New Zealand Geographic and Heritage Expeditions invite readers to experience the rawness, beauty and abundant wildlife of Stewart Island/Rakiura – ‘the land of glowing skies’ – and Ulva Island/Te Wharawhara in October, on an exclusive eight-day expedition with a yet-to-be-announced New Zealand Geographic expert sharing their knowledge.
Described by botanist Leonard Cockayne in 1909 as being “an actual piece of the primeval world”, his comment still rings true today. Just 30 kilometres from the Mainland and with more than 85% of the island dedicated National Park, Rakiura combines stunning landscapes spanning towering granite cliffs to unspoiled wilderness (more than half the island is covered by podocarp and rimu, miro, kamahi and southern rata dominant forests), 700-kilometres of coastline, beaches, hidden bays and coves, with numerous conservation success stories, rich history, epic sunrises and sunsets and the rightly famous hospitality of the friendly locals.
There’s also the opportunity to experience the spectacular Aurora Australis, which often puts on a mesmerising show as it famously paints the southern skies.
With only 25 kilometres of road, Stewart Island and its remote, hard to reach shores and historic spots are best explored by sea including nearby predator-free and bird-laden Ulva Island – your best chance of seeing New Zealand’s national icon the kiwi during the day.
Guests will also get the chance to experience the iconic South Sea Hotel, historic Paterson Inlet, Port Pegasus and more.
DATES: 26th October – 2nd November, 2023
DURATION: 8 days
SHIP: Heritage Explorer