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Introducing Stewart Island

Travellers who undertake the short jaunt to Stewart Island will be rewarded with a warm welcome from both the local kiwi and the local Kiwis. New Zealand’s ‘third’ island is a good place to spy the country’s shy, feathered icon in the wild, and the close-knit community of Stewart Islanders (population 420) are relaxed hosts. If you’re staying on the island for just a few days, don’t be too surprised if most people quickly know who you are and where you came from – especially if you mix and mingle over a beer at NZ’s southernmost pub, in the main settlement of Oban.

Once you’ve said g’day to the locals, there’s plenty of active adventure on offer including kayaking and setting off on a rewarding tramp in Stewart Island’s Rakiura National Park. With a worthwhile injection of effort, relative newcomers to tramping can easily complete one of NZ’s Great Walks, and be surprised and entertained with an uninterrupted aria from native birds. And if a multiday tramp still sounds too intense, spying a kiwi in the wild can also be achieved with the straightforward combination of a short boat ride and an even shorter bush and beach walk.