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This delightfully unique destination will take you by surprise – so rich in history and breathtakingly beautiful, Norfolk Island is as enchanting and quaint as its friendly locals who have lived on this tiny island for generations, many of whom are descendants of those famous Bounty Mutineers.
You’ll find it hard to believe, as you drive down quiet country roads or walk through the soaring trees of the national park, that this could ever have been the setting for such a checkered and at times gruesome past: firstly as the site of two penal colonies, then as a new home for descendants of the Bounty Mutineers.
Adventure tourism is still growing, but if you’re after a little excitement, you can opt for activities like sea-kayaking, mountain biking, big game fishing and horse trekking.
The subtropical temperature is the icing on the cake: average maximums range from 16˚C in winter to 24˚C in summer. Despite its compact size (total area is less than 35 square kilometres) Norfolk Island is the ‘Bounteous Isle’, in every way – just awaiting your exploration and discovery. Norfolk Island is truly a captivating experience.
Norfolk Island was selected as an ideal penal colony thanks to its remoteness and economic potential. The first settlers arrived in 1788 and set about building a gaol and other town facilities. The gaol and several other buildings remain today and are often said to be the best examples of all Australia’s convict sites, so much so that it has won UNESCO World Heritage status. Kingston, situated on Slaughter Bay, is the island’s main town. Many of its buildings have been restored and now house museums and galleries documenting Norfolk Island’s storied past.
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Discover the amazing National Park and botanical gardens of Norfolk Island. The National Park covers over five square kilometres and offers incredibly picturesque walking trails, stunning scenery and rich diversity of bird and plant life. Tracks wind through lush palm forests, stands of Norfolk Island pine and along the coastal fringe. Many endemic and endangered species can be spotted. You can even walk beneath the tallest tree ferns on earth. Tracks are well marked by signs and have a range of grades and lengths to suit all fitness levels. Take in the incredible island views from Mt Pitt and Mt Bates, the two highest points on the island. Visit the Captain Cook monument and lookout platform for spectacular coastline views. This is a great place to stop for a bite to eat as there are picnic facilities and barbecues on-site. Explore the Botanical Gardens and learn about Norfolk Island’s plants and animals. The track is mostly boardwalk so easy to enjoy at a leisurely pace.
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Nightfall at Kingston brings a different mood to the convict settlement. The stillness and the stars are there just as they were before mankind arrived in 1788, until the mood is broken and you experience the horrifying decades of Norfolk Island’s convict era in a theatrical show.
With ten acres of magical pines and bushland lit up like an enchanted forest you’ll feel like you’ve entered a magical wonderland. Meander along (or ride in the ‘moon buggy’) a gentle winding path with Archie, a descendant of the Bounty Mutineers as he recites his poems.
Take your choice of a stroll through Hundred Acres Reserve or for the more energetic, a leisurely 3.5 kilometre walk through scenic Mt. Bates to Captain Cook Monument. At the end of the walks meet on the cliff top for a delicious breakfast BBQ. We can’t think of a better way to start your day.
Current time in Norfolk Island
New Zealand is 1 hour ahead of Norfolk Island
Australia Dollar (AUD)
Current is 230V, 50HZ. Plug the same as New Zealand
English and Norfuk
Norfolk Island has two banks, Westpac and the Commonwealth Bank. Branches of both are located in the middle Burnt Pine shopping area. Both banks are opened Monday to Thursday from 9AM-4PM and on Fridays 9AM-5PM. There is one ATM on the Island which is located outside of the Commonwealth Bank. Both banks can exchange your foreign currency for you. All major credit cards and travel cheques are also widely accepted on the island.
Hospitals is located on Norfolk Island.
If you’re travelling on a NZ Passport, a Visa is not required but you are required to have proof of return or onward ticket. If you intend on staying longer than 30 days a visa will be required.
2 hours 20 minutes
Are you planning your next trip to Norfolk Island? Want to learn more about this destination? Or looking for ideas and inspiration for your next holiday? Here is where you can find our featured articles on Norfolk Island.
This is just a taste of the information and advice we have available through our House of Travel consultants.
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