As we once again continue our journey through some of the world’s most divine island destinations, we make our way this time to the Chatham Islands, a group of islands off the coast of New Zealand. Encompassing some of the most historic, most beautiful and most exciting destinations in the region, Island Trader Vacations invites you to learn more about the Chatham Islands and find out what you have been missing.
A chain of islands which are situated in the Pacific Ocean some 400 miles off the coast of mainland New Zealand, the Chatham Islands consists of about 10 islands within an area about 25 miles in size. Part of an archipelago called Rekohu or misty sun by the local Moriori peoples and Wharekauri by the Moari, it is the countries easternmost point.
Relatively young islands in the grand scheme of life in general, these islands are actually sitting on top of a large relatively shallow chunk of land known as the Chatham Rise. Hilly with stunning coast, beaches, lagoons and even sand dunes, the islands are even dotted with many lakes and even streams, unlike many other Pacific islands which lack freshwater.
Definitely off the beaten track for most, many travelers who make the trek here find themselves simply not wanting to leave.
Chatham Island is by far the largest of the group and is home to around 300 residents. Around 360 square miles in size, much of the island remains remote and wild, perfect for an adventure. Home to mountains and lakes it is also home to many rare and critically endangered species as well. Today, a renewal of the Moriori people and their culture in the area has made this a destination which is much more than just a place to explore nature. Ancient sites which tie to the first native peoples as well as museums fill with artifacts dating back over 1,000 years, help to tell the story of the island and it’s past.
Pitt island is small and home to only 30 residents however, while the main industry of the island is farming, a growing tourism industry and a rich fishing industry also sustain the area. Much of Pitt Island is actually Scenic Reserves making it a fantastic area to explore if you enjoy birds and wildlife.
Throughout the islands, visitors should keep their eyes opened along the shorelines for remnants of the islands’ rich history in the form of the Rakau Momori or Moriori Tree Carvings. These dendroglyphs or tree carvings have been found on coasts of both Chatham and Pitt Island. The J. M. Barker (Hapupu) National Historic Reserve and Taia Bush Historic Reserve are home to a number of these historic monuments.
From history and culture to nature at its most splendid, enjoy a trip to the Chatham Islands of New Zealand and have a real adventure.
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