About Stewart Island our next destination
Kia Ora, welcome to Stewart Island
The Island offers a special experience - a glimpse into a simpler, slower lifestyle, in rhythm with the sea and the tides, attuned to the natural world of bush and beach. In 2002 the very qualities that make this a great place to treasure were recognized in the formation of the Rakiura National Park,
comprising 85% of the island's 1570 square kilometres.
Those who live there permanently value the Island's special qualities - its clear, clean waters, the lush rainforest, sweeping sands, flora and
fauna and the unspoilt natural beauty that are constant in our lives.
From the 13th century the island's rich resources of native flora and birds, seafood and that very special delicacy, the titi (Sooty Shearwater/Muttonbird) provided a bountiful harvest for Maori.
Early in the 19th century explorers, sealers, missionaries, miners and settlers from all corners of the world made their mark on the island. Marriage with local Maori women created strong family and cultural links to Rakiura.
Saw millers, boat builders and fishermen followed. The island's population grew, stabilized and settled, mainly around the edges of Paterson Inlet and the heads of Halfmoon and Horseshoe Bays, and in short-lived ventures at Port William, Port Pegasus, and Maori Beach.
In the 1920's new arrivals came from Norway as part of the Rosshavet whaling enterprise. Those who chose to stay permanently added another thread to the interesting tapestry of nationalities living on Stewart Island.