Chatham Islands Holidays
The Chatham Islands are located 800km (500 mi) off the coast of New Zealand, directly east of Christchurch. Similar to the Orkney and Shetland Islands of Scotland, the Chathams are low-lying, with rugged rocky outcrops, long sandy beaches and diverse wildlife. There are 51 islands in the group, however only two, Chatham and Pitt Islands, are now inhabited. Many of the islands were previously used for farming but are now wildlife sanctuaries under the control of the Department of Conservation. Only around 600 people live on the islands and tourism here is based around a 'host system', with your accommodation hosts providing transport, meals and guided tours, as there is no public transport on the island.
Chatham Islands Holidays Planner
Flowerpot Tours operate day-tours to nearby majestic and rugged Pitt Island, the second largest island in the group and home to some of New Zealand's rarest plants and birds. Most of Pitt Island is privately owned land, however Flowerpot Tours has negotiated access to some of the island's most scenic vantage points. Visitor numbers to Pitt Island are strictly limited to maintain the delicate balance of nature on the island.
The Chatham Islands are renowned for their excellent fishing and diving, including the thrilling shark cage dive. Charter tours are available from the main island village of Waitangi. There are a number of Department of Conservation nature reserves and walking tracks on Chatham Island. The short JM Barker track leads through mature Kopi forest, while the 2 hour Henga Scenic Walking Trail leads through forest to limestone outcrops, sand dunes and breathtaking views of Petre Bay.