Akaroa

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Settled by French pioneers, this lovely town has a distinctly French feel, and is a busy port for cruise ships.

Akaroa is 84 kilometres (52 mi) by road from Christchurch and is the terminus of State Highway 75. In the 2013 New Zealand census, the permanent population was 624, an increase of 9.5% since 2006. The town has a high (31.3%) ratio of residents aged over 65. It is set on a sheltered harbour and is overlooked and surrounded by the remnants of a miocene volcano. Akaroa is entirely dependent upon rainfall on the hills. Akaroa is a popular resort town. Many Hector's dolphins may be found within the harbour, and 'swim with the dolphins' boat tours are a major tourist attraction.
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