Stewart Island 1st

Trip code: SI2021/1
Expedition Rating: Explorer Travel
Leaving: 20 Mar 2021 Starts: Invercargill
Returning: 28 Mar 2021 Ends: Invercargill

Hiking, Birding, Swimming , Kayaking , Photography, Cultural, Cetacean watching

Beyond Halfmoon Bay (Oban) and nearby Patterson Inlet lies some of the greatest cruising grounds in New Zealand. Little known and seldom visited areas such as Port Adventure, Lords River, Port Pegasus and Broad Bay are crammed full with opportunities for the adventurous and curious traveller. There is a rich human history of discovery, exploration and exploitation. Sealers, whalers, tin miners and fishermen have all left their relics and stories. The natural history is unique in New Zealand, with a rich mixture of temperate and Sub Antarctic. The landscapes are not what you imagine. It is an area that has to be seen and experienced to be fully appreciated.      

Day 1 Joining the Expedition 

Joining the Expedition. We will arrange a complimentary shuttle bus to pick you up from your Invercargill accommodation and transfer you and other team members to Port of Bluff, where you will take the Stewart Island ferry to Halfmoon Bay. On arrival you will be met by our team and welcomed aboard the Strannik where you will be introduced to the vessel and our team. Over a meal and cup of tea we will look at charts and maps (including weather maps) and we will discuss our objectives and goals for the expedition. We plan to find a good anchorage this first night that allows an opportunity,to get ashore, as well as practice with the ship’s Naiad RIB which will be the key to getting ashore during the expedition. 

Day 2 – 8

Our goal is to discover a part of New Zealand that very few people have had the opportunity to see and experience, especially the areas south of Oban/Halfmoon Bay and Paterson Inlet. We plan to visit both the Oban and Paterson inlet areas, including Ulva Island, but the lure of the southern parts of the island will be strong; places like Port Adventure, Lords River, Port Pegasus, Broad Bay and, if the weather is good, the southern Muttonbird Islands, and possibly Easy Harbour and Doughboy Bay. We want to explore the importance of this area for the Māori, the impact of the European sealers and whalers, the saw millers and the tin miners. We would like to give you the opportunity to climb and explore some of the striking geographical features, such as Trig D, the Fraser Peaks including Gog and Magog, and possibly Smiths Lookout, as well as explore the myriad of sheltered bays, coves and inlets. With names like Smugglers Cove, Cooks Arm, Evening Cove, Shipbuilders Cove and Acheron Anchorage there is much to learn. We will search for kiwi (they can often be seen in daylight), and look for other bush birds and of course seabirds and pelagic species. Fur seals and sealions will also be on our hope to see and photograph list. The forest mosaics aren’t what you would expect, it’s both a unique and exciting botanical wonderland. Finally, an expedition to this region wouldn’t be compete without at least one meal of the legendary blue cod or, if you are keen and you bring a wet suit, crayfish can often be found just with a snorkel, providing the sea conditions are suitable.   

Day 9 – Farewells 

Breakfast aboard the Strannik and then time to say our farewells. We plan to get you onto the first ferry from Halfmoon Bay to Bluff where you will be met by a complimentary shuttle bus and transferred to your accommodation or flights in Invercargill.  

Please note, we do not publish a day to day itinerary, except for first and the last days because these are expeditions. However each of our expeditions has a clear goal or objective and you have a role in both defining and achieving those. That, in our opinion, is the spirit of genuine expedition travel. Also please note, these are not “guided” trips, but the crew on board know the areas we are visiting intimately. There will be significant resources on board for your use.  


$4896.00 NZDpp
Price Includes:

GST, all meals and accommodation, complimentary wine and soft drinks (limited selection available), Internet access for Email, transfers to/from the Strannik from Invercargill.

Trip Info

Proposed expedition leader: Rodney Russ
Visas required: New Zealand

Requirements may vary depending on what passport you are travelling with. It is your responsibility to check to ensure you are compliant.

Trip Map

Map for trip: Stewart Island 1st

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