Chatham Islands

The Chatham Islands, 800 kilometres east of the South Island, are a place that even most New Zealanders have never been to, but you shouldn’t let that deter you. The Chatham Islands are one of those rare places on this planet, a place that reminds you of the way the world used to be. On Te Whanga lagoon you can go swimming, kayaking, sailing or indulge in a spot of recreational fishing. Fossick along its shores and the chances are that you will find fossilized shark teeth, around 30 million years old. Other treasures of the island are the delightful Chatham Island forget-me-not and the tiny Chatham Islands Black Robin, a bird brought back from the edge of extinction.

A Chatham Islands adventure holiday will be a journey of discovery. You will take a step back in time, to how life used to be. Landscapes with volcanic peaks thrusting up out of rolling peatland, forest topped towering seacliffs, the vast expanse of Te Whanga, endless kilometres of sandy beaches and the ever present ocean. Situated in the South Pacific Ocean, about 800km east of Christchurch, the Chatham Islands are New Zealand’s most easterly region. An archipelago of 11 islands, only Pitt and Chatham are inhabited, by about 600 people. Meet the Chatham Islanders; people who remain true to themselves while extending warm hospitality to visitors.

Visit heritage sites and learn of the fascinating history shaped by years of isolation; Moriori, Maori, sealers, whalers, missionaries, farmers and settlers.  See for yourself the strange and beautiful Chatham Island plants. Although some of the rare birds are protected on island sanctuaries, you can readily find others in bush, on roadsides and beaches. Walk through forests, expansive wetlands and conservation areas. Venture to Pitt Island, even more remote and surprisingly different from Chatham Island. Share in the bounty of our oceans; crayfish, paua, kina and blue cod, which also help sustain the Chatman Islands’ economy. Then relax and absorb the peace and tranquility of the Chatham Islands.