The drive to Kaikoura was the first (and only!) time I have been breathalysed. Not because I was drunk – the Police were breathalysing everyone on that road. They held something close to my mouth, which I assumed was a microphone, and they asked me to say my name. I said my name and was expecting them to explain what was going on, and then ask to breathalyse me. However apparently that was it – they must have breathalysed me when I said my name – so it was done without me knowing what was going on. I was miffed about that, but didn’t think it was worth complaining – they could have made my life a lot more difficult! So I walked away. Well, drove away, as I was sitting in a car at the time.
We went to Kaikoura for the same reason most people go to Kaikoura – for whale watching! Apparently the ocean floor drops off sharply just off the coast of Kaikoura, so the water is extremely deep relatively close to the shore.
We took a boat out and I remember the guide saying that the ocean is so deep you could fit the Auckland skytower between the boat and the sea bed. Scarily deep!
Due to previous bad experiences making me very travel sick (see Nazca blogs, here!) I became really anxious and worried that I would be sick. Purely psychological, I’m sure, but it made me anxious nevertheless. I found the trip fine going out – the boat was bouncing over each wave and everyone went “wahayyyy!!”. (Of course, on the way back everyone went “bleuurggh!!” 😉 ). However I managed not to be sick, and the boat eventually stopped once they found a whale. It was amazing. My camera wasn’t the best so the photo is a bit rubbish, but just having the privilege of seeing those creatures in the wild was amazing.
On the way back to land, the boat stopped to see seals sunbathing on some rocks. It was an awesome trip, however I can’t say I wasn’t glad to be on solid earth again!
We spent time relaxing in Kaikoura and on the beach. The beach was stunning, with black sand, and blue azure water.
After that, it was back on the road again!
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I had the luck of spending a semester in Kaikoura while I was in college. In addition to whales and seals, they also have albatrosses, rare Hector’s dolphins, and the incredibly acrobatic dusky dolphins–there’s even a company that will take you to swim with the duskies. There’s also a waterfall in the forest. Not a big deal, except it just so happens that this particular waterfall’s pool is filled with baby seals.
So glad you enjoyed your trip!
Wow! Thanks for that – I didn’t know about the rare species – they may have announced it on the boat but I was too busy trying not to be sick 😉 The pool with baby seals sounds amazing also! Lucky you, getting to explore the area for a whole semester! 🙂