16th – Kaikoura Cracker!

We finished off the little kms left to the seaside town on the east coast called Kaikoura. Now I’d heard so many good things about this place before so was looking forward to seeing it. The weather was a little grey but the little main street (which is the whole town really) is very cute and has cool little designs and sculptures about. It goes alongside a little river do there are a few sweet bridges to walk over too. We immediately noticed that there were so many eateries of all different cuisines so let’s be honest I was pretty happy with that. A few clothes shops and souvenir shops made up the rest, oh and a couple of hair salons – more on that later.

Oo I forgot to say as we were driving towards the town we emerged round a bend out of the trees and all of a sudden the road was right on the sea. Of course we were blown away by the bright turquoise colour, even with it being overcast it was still so blue, and with huge rocks near the shoreline it was very picturesque. I did lots of gasping and ooing and then about 30 seconds after we first saw the water we spotted a ton of splashing and there must have been about 200 dolphins playing in the surf! It was amazing and I pulled over as soon as I could and got on the zoom. Aah so cool to see them flipping and jumping and going crazy – yay we saw our Kaikoura dolphins already and we hadn’t even reached the town yet! One happy Sam. As we drove slowly along the water we also saw a load of seals rolling around in the kelp and snoozing on the rocks. Oh god I liked this place already. Now I just need to see some whales and an albatross please!

Speaking of, our first stop was the usual i-site and, with the help of a very friendly woman with amazing writing and typing skills seeing as she had no hands, we quickly booked a whale watching tour for the next day. Unfortunately there were no spaces for like a week for dolphin swimming (which is what we were going for originally) and at first we booked a dolphin watching tour with her but then for only double the price she convinced us to go on the whale watching tour as you would probably see dolphins on that tour anyway. So we were sold. Easy haha.

We’d found a campsite that was on the edge of town as the few inside the square km of main town were so expensive, called Lobster Holiday Park or something, so went to check in. It was a weird kinda dingy reception but the girl was nice and we had power for the night so it was a treat to plug in again and charge cameras etc. We parked on our little grassy area right opposite the loos/showers/kitchen facility which was nice.  After we checked in, even though it was kind of drizzling, I needed to move my limbs so we went for a walk back along the long road into town and browsed the shops. It was a sweet little town, quaint. Then we turned to nature and went for a looong walk along the coast all the way to Seal Point where yep you guessed it, a resident seal colony was hanging about. The tide was way out by this point, about 4pm maybe, so you could walk out on the flat rocks and get in amongst the animals.  Well, the stupid tourists were doing that – I photographed some individuals getting actually in between a clearly irritated seal and two others, like only a few feet away from them, and snapping away at the animal getting more and more bothered. Ugh some people.  OK you’re excited to be so near wild animals and they’re so relaxed around you, so please RESPECT them and give them their space. There were about 12 seals dotted about sleeping and you really could get close enough for pics without bothering them. There was a one eyes one that was entertaining a few of us for a while. Oh and guess who we saw there too observing the seals – Chris and Maddy our retired Brit friends haha! That was nice.

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Not too long later we were hungry and it was around dinner time (loving the 5-7pm dinnertimes woohoo, none of that 9-10pm Spanish stuff for a while thanks!) so on the long walk back we popped into an Indian restaurant I’d clocked earlier and got our takeaway,  yummy. That was devoured pretty quick before bed. And there was lots of snot and red faces going on, we’d only asked for medium heat but oo it was good!

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