Saturday, February 6, 2010

Wine and Seals in Kaikoura

First stop in South Island was Kaikoura, a beautiful little beach town with an amazing mountainous backdrop.  We spent 2 days there in a place called the Adelphi Lodge.  We've been staying mainly in YHA hostels as the standard is generally better than other accomodations down in our lowly price range but the YHA was fully booked so we settled on the Adelphi.  Clean, well-appointed and modern are all words I would not use to describe this place however we scored a private room for only a couple of bucks more than a dorm so we were willing to deal with a bit of grime.

Kaikoura is home to a large seal colony where seals go to hang out, sleep, and have babies so we went to check it out.  We cycled out to Kean's Point on our Adelphi-supplied bikes (just as old and dusty as the lodge but free so we weren't complaining) and visited the seals.  It was pretty amazing.  When the tide is out you can walk right out onto the rocks and get within touching distance of hundreds of seals.  We were fortunate enough to see a few pups and one of them, a curious little fella, even came right over to us to check us out.  Very cool.

Kaikoura Winery Tour

In the afternoon we headed out to the Kaikoura Winery for a tour and tasting.  The winery was built on an old sheep farm and there are some incredible views of the ocean from the main building.  Our tour guide even gave us some binoculars so that we could look at the sperm whales that were swimming just off the coast.  The wines were pretty good, we liked the Sauvingon Blanc the most and decided to purchase a bottle to enjoy with dinner.

Kaikoura Beach.

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