Kaikoura is a base for wildlife experiences of all kinds. It is also a great place to eat crayfish (in the Maori language kai means food, koura means crayfish). The environment is truly spectacular; the village is caught between the rugged Seaward Kaikoura Range and the Pacific Ocean. In winter the mountains are covered with snow, adding to the drama of the landscape. Kaikouras special talent is marine mammal encounters, as whales, fur seals and dolphins live permanently in the coastal waters. Whale watching trips leave the town several times a day and the local seal colony is always entertaining.