Stewart Island New Zealand
Rakiura - 'Island of the Glowing Skies'
The Maori name for Stewart Island
may be in reference to the Aurora Australis or Southern Lights that
are sometimes visible from this latitude. The island is located approximately
30kms south of the main South Island of New Zealand and is accessible
by sea ferry from Bluff and air transfer from Invercargill. The island
has 85% of its landmass designated as National Park and only
a few kilometres of sealed road. The highest peak is Mt Anglem to
the north west at 979m, sometimes capped by a dusting of snow.
The main settlement of the island
is at Halfmoon Bay located on the northern coast at Patterson Inlet.
In the sheltered waters of the inlet is Ulva Island a 'must do' for
all those interested in nature, in particular birdlife. Stewart Island
is well known for its population of Kiwi but for the most diversity
visit the sanctuary of Ulva Island. Birdlife includes: Kakapo,
Kaka, Stewart Island Robin, Saddleback, Mohua, Kaka, Kakariki,
Tui, Bellbird and Weka, plus seabirds Sooty Shearwater, Albatross,
Mollymawk, Prion, Petrel, Cormorants and Blue Penguin.
Infrastructure on the island is
limited, and there are no banks or ATMs, so kick back and enjoy life
at a gentle pace with a focus on the natural features of island life.