• Sydney Australia - credit Jackie Appleton

Wildlife of South Island, New Zealand

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Credit Angie Watson

Credit Angie Watson














New Zealand is not only a country of stunning scenery, a rich and interesting culture and friendly people, but is also home to a wide variety of wildlife – predominantly marine and birdlife, and mostly in the South Island.

Perhaps the most famous of these is the kiwi – a rare flightless bird native to New Zealand. 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.

The Catlins, located in the deep south of the South Island, is comprised of rolling farmland, temperate rainforest, beautiful deserted beaches and plenty of waterfalls. Here, observe New Zealand sea lions lounging on the beach, tramp one of the many walking trails through the rainforest, and explore the small villages of this quiet region. A visit to Curio Bay and the Petrified Forest is a must – with a chance to see the rare Yellow Eyed Penguin in its natural environment.

Visit the Otago Peninsula with opportunities to see the Royal Albatross, Little Blue Penguin, Yellow Eyed Penguin and sea lions too.

On the east coast of the South Island, Kaikoura is famous for its whale watching opportunities. Here, take a cruise to see humpbacks, blue whales and giant sperm whales, along with orcas, dolphins, New Zealand fur seals, shearwaters, albatross and petrels.

In the Fjordlands National Park, take a cruise to Milford or Doubtful Sound. Here, a highlight is the Fjordland crested penguin, along with seals and dolphins. See breathtaking scenery including mountains, waterfalls and rainforest.

If wildlife is of interest, then the South Island of New Zealand is well worth a visit. For information on bespoke New Zealand holidays, see our website www.experienceholidays.couk, call us on 01323 446550 or email us at info@experienceholidays.co.uk.

Photo courtesy of Mr Hardman

Photo courtesy of Mr Hardman



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