8-day, 7-night tour prices from (per person):
Hotel upgrade options:
(all packages come with a standard single room with shared facilities)
Your tour leader will meet you and support with check-in at your departing destination terminal. During the flight you may like to put your watches forward – the Chatham Islands are 45 minutes ahead of NZ time.
During your first day on the Chatham Islands we will visit:
- Blind Jim’s Creek (Fossilized Sharks Teeth).
On the shores of beautiful Te Whanga lagoon, near Blind Jim’s Creek, you may discover 30-million year old fossilised shark teeth. These incredibly ancient objects are almost as scarce as hen’s teeth but can be found in the Chatham Islands. By the time you leave Te Whanga Lagoon you may be in possession of one or many of these prized ancient fossils.
- Nikau Reserve
Nikau Bush is 19ha reserve located 1.5km North of Blind Jim’s Creek. It conserves broadleaf forest with Nikau palms – the only palm native to the Chatham Islands.
On Day we will visit the southeast and fishing settlement of Owena – a fishing village with a working fish factory.
Deep Sea fishing is an optional extra at Owena (numbers gathered night before) – all fish caught will be filleted and bagged, frozen and able to be brought home. Extra free flow blue cod or groper can be purchased at $33 per kg.
At Owena we will:
- Participate in a short walk and tour of downtown Waitangi with a visit to the Museum.
- Visit the Moriori Kopinga Marae on the hilltop at Te Awatea.
This is the only Moriori marae in New Zealand.
- Visit the Tommy Solomon Statue at Manakau, Owenga.
Tommy Solomon (7 May 1884 – 19 March 1933) is believed by most to have been the last full-blooded Moriori (the indigenous people of the Chatham Islands).
- Visit the Eva Cherie Tuck Art Studio.
Her works represent a spiritual connection with the landscapes, seascape, bird and fish life. ** There are no eftpos/visa facilities at the studio, but you can get your purchase billed back to your room. Your purchase will also be packed well for your flight home.
On Day Three we will visit Waitangi West.
At Waitangi West we will:
- Visit Stone Cottage & Maunganui Bluff
The cottage was built between 1866-1868 for the Moravian Missionaries who arrived in the Chathams in 1843. These German missionaries made no converts, but had a significant input into the history and lifestyle of the Chathams, introducing large-scale horticulture, sheep farming, shipbuilding and literacy. The cottage is built largely of local stone and wood, which reflects the missionaries’ attitudes. They were committed to the idea of being self-reliant in their own lives, and as an example to others, and hence using only local materials.
- Visit the safest fishing harbour with the most shipwrecks on the island, at Port Hutt.
- Our next stop is the amazing Basalt Columns at Waitangi West.
Over farmland down to Ohira Bay lies massive olivine basalt columns – part of lava flows dated around 80 million years ago. These are another interesting geological formation – a series of pentagonal shaped volcanic rock columns on the shoreline, and not found anywhere else on the island, and only two other places in the world.
- Dinner this evening is a barbecue at Admiral Farm.
This is the fourth generation Chathams property owned by the Croon family with a gorgeous garden featuring the eerie skeletons of dead kopi trees and great drifts of the stunning Chatham Island forget-me-not. Lois and Val Croon will be in attendance.
On day four we will visit Kaingaroa – The North part of the Chathams
At Kaingaroa we will:
- Visit Ocean Mail Reserve – Board walk and wander through this wetland area.
- Visit J M Barker Reserve
- Visit Hapupu Historic Reserve.
Hapupu Historic Reserve is another unique archaeological site. Carved into the bark of kopi (karaka) trees within the reserve are Moriori tree carvings – known as dendroglyphs. They are among the little evidence of pre-contact Moriori culture remaining on the island.
- Visit Broughton Landing.
Broughton Landing is an old Mission and Whaling Station.
This is where we will be able to view the remains of a wrecked RNZAF Short Sunderland and a newly arrived Fokker Friendship in the process of preservation. This particular Sunderland aircraft provided an aviation lifeline to the island until it was holed by a rock while taking off from the Te Whanga Lagoon in 1959.
- We will also travel across many paddocks to reach the huge fur seal colony at Point Munning.
Day 5, 6 & 7