• Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton

Stewart Island – a New Zealand gem

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Located off the south coast of the South Island of New Zealand, Stewart Island is an often-missed gem that offers untouched scenery and a plethora of wildlife. 85% of the island is made up of Rakiura National Park, and is home to the Raikiura Track – a hiking (or as the New Zealanders call it ‘tramping’) track that holds great appeal to keen walkers. This long distance track has huts along the way in which a bed can be booked for the night – and these hikes can be taken with a pack on your back, or with someone else to transport your luggage for you.

Stewart Island is one of the few places in New Zealand where you may encounter a native Kiwi bird in the wild. Nearby Ulva Island offers a predator-free environment where these, and other endangered birds, can thrive. Take a bird watching tour with an expert for the best chance of seeing these elusive birds.

There are no large hotels on Stewart Island, which keeps visitor numbers to a level that has little impact on the environment, and enables those who visit to stay in small, friendly B&B’s and lodges with attentive hosts and a chance to experience small island life.

Accessed by air from Invercargill or by ferry from Bluff, Stewart Island can be visited as a day trip, although we would always recommend a 2-3 night stay to enable you to explore the island more thoroughly. A visit here can easily be incorporated into a self-drive bespoke holiday within New Zealand, and is sure to be a highlight for nature lovers.

To discuss Stewart Island, and how a tailor made New Zealand itinerary to include this gem might come together, call us on 01323 446550, email us at info@experienceholidays.co.uk, or pop into our offices in Hailsham, East Sussex.


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