Weekly Update - 12th December 2016

Kia Ora Friends

The team at Whale Watch Kaikoura are continually humbled by the ongoing support we are receiving from our friends near and far. We can’t thank you all enough for your continued patience as we work towards being able to operate our whale watching tours again.

It is now one month on, it may seem slow but we can assure you that progress is being made daily, however we are still unable to provide you with a definite date but we are working hard on this.

New legislation has been past through government to help speed up the repair work on the Kaikōura Marina and plant is currently being mobilised from Christchurch, we are hopeful that work will begin soon.

Huge progress is being made in regards to road access to Kaikōura with the Inland Road route under supervised convoy Mon – Fri and State Highway 1 set to open also under supervised convoy mid-December. (All subject to weather conditions and seismic activity).

The good news is that our land operations are open with our Customer Service team ready to take your calls or answer your emails. They will be available between the hours of 9am – 3pm daily.

Our gift shop is also open 9am – 1pm. There are many fantastic marine & local based products available both in store and online BUY ONLINE TODAY

Fluke Café is also open from 9am – 1pm with fresh baking, great coffee, friendly service and stunning views on offer.

It is also well worth noting that whales, dolphins, seals and an abundance of marine birds are being sighted off the Kaikōura coastline which is so encouraging.

 

Kaikōura Business Update:

47 - Accommodation Providers (61%) are currently open for business.

82 - Retail, Hospitality and General Service Providers (82%) are currently open for business.

27 – Activity Providers (57%) are currently open for business.

Please also take a look at http://visitkaikoura.nz/ for more information.

If you have any questions in regards to your booking or a refund please contact our Customer Service team directly on res@whalewatch.co.nz or phone +64 3 319 6767 or free phone 0800 655 121 (within NZ) and they will be able to help you with your inquiry. Please refer to our TERMS & CONDITIONS in regards to our refund policy.

Again our team appreciate your continued support,

 

The team at Whale Watch Kaikoura

 

 Update

There have been some beautiful sunrises in Kaikōura over the past week, with more sunshine forecasted for the upcoming days too!

Out on our tours we saw semi-residential Sperm Whales Aoraki, Tutu and Tiaki feeding in the Hikurangi Trench as well as Sperm Whales new to our region. When time allowed, we were able to view NZ Fur Seals on Barney’s Rock, a rock thought to be used as a lookout point by early whalers.

This week we had only one juvenile Humpback Whale passing through our waters. It’s coming to the end of their annual migration which only means one thing, the Summer Orca season is approaching us!

We currently have an end of winter sale on at our Retail Store at the moment, a whopping 25% off all hoodies, jackets and merino items! We need to make room for new summer stock, so head over to our online store to get your hands on some winter goodies.

REGULAR, SCHEDULED CLOSURES OF STATE HIGHWAY 1 SOUTH OF KAIKOURA

There is a possibility of short delays and it will be 30km/hour through parts of the route. Inland Route 70 remains open 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

From Tuesday, 22nd August, drivers will need to watch for 28 metre truck loads moving bridge beams to Kaikōura, via the Lewis Pass and the inland road via Waiau/Mt Lyford. The beams are for a new bridge build as well as smaller bridge sites north of Kaikōura. Some minor delays can be expected due to the length of the load and the slow and winding nature of parts of the route. These truckloads are scheduled to follow this inland route until September.

During the cooler winter months it is a good reminder to take extra care on the roads and to check the NZTA website for road updates before traveling.

Progress is continuing to be made on the repair of the Kaikōura Marina, with the modified trailer and public jetty now being used for launching our vessel Tohora. This is due to tidal restrictions and repair work as a result of the coastline lifting by +1.0m. All our berths have now been removed. This is an end of an era but we are excited to see our new and improved marina once it is completed! The use of the modified trailer and public jetty will continue until further notice. It is anticipated that the Kaikōura Marina will be fully restored in October 2017. Below is a graphic (indicative only) of what is being restored at the marina.

Currently our available tour times are based around the tide times on the day and may differ from the tour times originally advertised, please bear with us as we continue to work toward being fully operational again. For an update on the tour times available, please contact our Customer Service team directly either by email on res@whalewatch.co.nz, phone +64 3 319 6767 or free phone 0800 655 121 (within NZ) and they will be able to help you with your inquiry.  Please note we are operating at a reduced capacity in the interim with up to 3 tours available per day. Please contact our team prior to arriving in Kaikōura to secure a space on one of our tours and to save disappointment. 

KAIKOURA BUSINESS UPDATE

Kaikōura is open for business. For latest updates on accommodation, restaurant and retail information please contact the team at the Kaikōura I-Site who will be able to help you find what suits your needs during your stay in Kaikōura. 

TRANSPORT UPDATE

Hasslefree Tours & Canterbury Leisure Tours have daily services from Christchurch to Kaikōura with a return service from Christchurch, as well as Kiwi Experience now having the option of a day tour out of Christchurch for their travellers.

Progress on the work being done on roads (along with harbour repairs) can be found on this dedicated KAIKOURA EARTHQUAKE RESPONSE page provided by the team at NZTA. This page is updated weekly on Friday. Work is also starting to take place on the railway network, please be aware and take care when using rail crossings.

The team at Whale Watch Kaikoura.