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Kaikoura is a tourist and primary-industry town on the coast in the north-east of the Canterbury region of New Zealand.

Seat of government of the Kaikoura District, it was among the hardest-hit communities in the 2016 Kaikoura earthquake. Many buildings and much infrastructure suffered damage, and residents spent weeks unable to drive to anywhere else in the country. About a thousand tourists were stranded there, most being helicoptered to Christchurch over the first few days.

Retailers and tourist operators face a bleak summer with no through traffic because the national state highway linking to Marlborough District and the Cook Strait ferries is unlikely to be reopened for many months.

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