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Akaroa

Spotting Kiwi, Kea, penguins and dolphins!

semi-overcast 19 °C
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Day 1
After Kaikoura we headed to Hanmer Springs, however I didn't take any photos there so have skipped over that day.
We headed to Akaroa next, past Christchurch (which we would visit last). Our first stop was a beach near to Christchurch. It was lovely to just sit and watch the waves for a little bit, however it was a little bit cold and we still had to get on!
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Our next stop was one that had been added quite last minute. It was at a wildlife park and nature reserve, and we chose to go in order to see some Kiwi! They have a mixture of animals here, and there is a dark house with Kiwi in so we got to see two that were active (no photos as it is dark and their eyes are very sensitive to light). It was much better than we expected, and we enjoyed seeing all the animals.
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The drive to Akaroa was very picturesque and we some nice views.
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Laura and I parted ways for the night in Akaroa. I wandered around the town for a little bit and booked a nature cruise for the next day (Laura was going to do a walk). My B&B had a very pretty view.
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Day 2
I woke up today to the sound of quite heavy rain which didn't bode too well for my boat cruise. Thankfully by the time I left it was only spitting a bit, and I wore my raincoat and walking boots to stop myself from getting too wet. I got on the boat, and we soon got on the way. There were only 6 of us on board (pus the skipper and one staff member) which was really nice as we could move around easily. The main aim of the trip is to see Hector's dolphins, which are the smallest and rarest marine dolphins in the world, and only found in New Zealand. Akaroa is known as a good place to spot them, and trips are usually successful. Our boat featured a dog called Buster, who can apparently detect the sonar of the dolphins and so can help spot them, however Buster isn't fond of rain and preferred to nap for most of the trip! Within about 20/30 minutes though we had spotted our first dolphin, and everyone ran outside to the bow of the boat to see it . Along the way we also saw mothers and their calves. It's amazing as the dolphins swim along with the boat, underneath the bow. We also saw four little blue penguins, which are native to New Zealand and the smallest penguins in the world. One of them even put on a show for us as he preened himself in the water!
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Before our dinner of fish and chips Laura and I went for a wander around Akaroa. Akaroa is a small town just south of Christchurch with a rich history of British and French colonial buildings. It is also very busy in the summer with cruise ships.
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Posted by pkaplicz 12:36 Archived in New Zealand Tagged penguin dolphins akaroa kiwi Comments (0)

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