They were married just over a week when he shook her world.

And that's a pun that Edward Llewelyn-Evans is already beginning to get sick of.

"The ongoing gag at the moment is 'mate, you're meant to rock her world but not literally'."

His new wife, Lesley-Anne, said the night of the quake they slept on a blanket laid on gravel on a hilltop in Kaikoura.

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"Edward tells me that he's taken me on a star-gazing adventure," she laughed.

If anything, Edward said, it would be a story "we'll be living off at dinner parties in years to come".

The pair were this morning two of many tourists standing in an ever-growing line waiting to get their names on a list for a flight out of Kaikoura today. Hundreds of people are anxious to get out.

They've got a flight to Nelson scheduled this afternoon but they realise they are not as important as others who are sick, have kids or travelling internationally.

The couple married on November 5 and have three weeks in New Zealand.

"It's definitely a memorable honeymoon. I hope it's not an omen," Lesley-Anne joked.

"Although we are coping [sleeping] in a car."

She was also pleased that they escaped without injury, considering "how violent" the quake was and how long it lasted.

"Some people weren't so lucky."

She said it started off as a "normal" quake and then "intensified".

"The hotel was completely trashed, we had stuff falling down around us and we managed to get out and just ran up the hill because we knew there could be a tsunami soon after an earthquake.

"It was pretty terrifying. I've never been so terrified in my entire life," she said.

Edward said he could tell it was bad when even the locals were frightened.

"When you see the Kiwis start to panic as well, that really made us run faster up the hill."

Once up on the hill, they were surprised at how organised the situation was, as people were given blankets and supplies.

Lesley-Anne found the hardest thing now was dealing with the aftershocks.

"You don't know if it's another aftershock or a big earthquake."

Read more: What happened in New Zealand?