Akaroa is a small town on Banks Peninsula, 84km from Christchurch in the South Island. The town was settled in 1838 by the French, and the area still shows a prominent French influence through many local place names. There are also a number of French restaurants which can be found in Akaroa. Akaroa is situated on the Akaroa Harbour waterfront. Therefore, it offers many boating trips such as fishing and sighting dolphins and whales. Akaroa is a great place to day-trip to, or spend a weekend in, especially if you are wanting to get out of the big city.