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Positive outlook for Kaikoura tourism

Around ninety per cent of tourism activity providers and more than seventy-five per cent of accommodation providers in Kaikoura are back operating following the November earthquake.

Whale watching, dolphin, seal and albatross encounters are operating daily, offering plenty of activities for the increasing numbers of visitors making their way back to the town.

“It’s fantastic to see that Kaikoura has bounced back so quickly and it really shows how resilient the community is,” says Tourism New Zealand’s Acting Chief Executive Brighid Kelly.

A group from Tourism New Zealand, including Kelly, visited Kaikoura recently to meet with industry. The trip included a flight over State Highway 1 north and south to survey earthquake damage, a site inspection of South Bay Marina, and a working lunch meeting with the mayor and local industry members.

“The visit allowed us to see first-hand what the current situation in Kaikoura is. It also gave us a chance to find out from local industry how we can continue to support them.

“One of the most important things we can do is continue to get the word out internationally that Kaikoura is open for business and providing visitors with a great experience like they always have.”

“There is a really positive feeling in Kaikoura amongst industry, despite the setbacks the earthquake caused this peak season.

“They are focused on getting through winter and preparing for shoulder season visits and the next peak season.

Destination Kaikoura’s General Manager Glenn Ormsby says, “It was terrific to have Brighid and senior staff from Tourism New Zealand visit recently.

“It meant a lot to local tourism operators to know that Tourism New Zealand cares about how the community is progressing and that they are doing their utmost to provide accurate and relevant information to the wider industry about how we’re going. It’s very much appreciated.

“Things are going well in Kaikoura and we hope to have more positive news to announce over the coming weeks.”

The next update from Destination Kaikoura comes out on Tuesday 14 February, three months to the day since the earthquake. Coinciding with Valentine’s Day, the update will be themed ‘With love from Kaikoura’ offering a thank you to New Zealand for the support shown to the community.