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Rakiura Track Independent Walk Package

Days
5

Pricing From
$469

Difficulty

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Overview

Many centuries ago Maori came by canoe to the island to harvest shellfish and mutton birds, traditions still carried out today by local iwi. They named the island Rakiura - 'Land of the Glowing Skies' as it is renowned for its lingering sunsets of summer and the Aurora Australis or Southern Lights.

The Rakiura Track is one of the New Zealand Great Walks. The loop track traverses country with a rich diversity of trees, ferns, and perching orchids. Along the way visit many historical sites with the chance to see a variety of sea and forest birds. The circuit follows the coast, climbs over a 300 metre high forested ridge, and skirts the sheltered shores of Paterson Inlet.

Far removed from the hustle of the more commercial tracks in mainland New Zealand, the Rakiura Track in Stewart Island, the country's southernmost inhabited island, offers a real escape from the daily hum of civilized life. At only 37 km., the track is one of the shortest of the Great Walks and can easily be done in 3 days.

From Invercargill, you fly over Foveaux Strait and land at Oban where the track begins and ends at Halfmoon Bay. Passing through the Rakiura National Park, the track is known for its pristine forests, rugged ocean views, tidal flats, and rare sightings of kiwi in their natural habitat.

Tour Grading: C

  • A medium level of fitness is required for the Rakiura Track.
  • The walking is a mixture of undulating and generally flat.
  • The tracks can be muddy and wet after heavy rain.

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track Stewart Island

Rakiura Track, Stewart Island

Rakiura Track, Stewart Island

Rakiura Track, Stewart Island

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Arrive Invercargill

Arrive Invercargill and stay one night at the Bella Vista Motel in Invercargill.

Day 2Invercargill - Halfmoon Bay (Oban) - Port William HutWalk 4-5 hours / 12 km

Oban’s Department of Conservation Visitor Centre is your journey's starting point as you make your way to Lee Bay where the track begins. Pass through the chain-link sculpture that commemorates the creation of Rakiura National Park, and follow the Little River to reach Maori Beach.

Trace the coastline and walk the length of the beach before climbing the ridge through the forest. Follow the path as it descends to the water's edge and leads you to your hut for the night at Port William located at the end of Magnetic Beach.

Day 3Port William Hut - North Arm HutWalk 6 hours / 13 km

Make your way inland and pass through an area once used for logging but now re-vegetated with podocarp forest growing alongside the original native forest. Climb to the summit ridge through a sequence of rimu, kamahi and rata forests. The lookout tower provides expansive views of Paterson Inlet and beyond to the Tin Range. 

Heading to Paterson Inlet, cross several bridged creeks as you make your way towards North Arm Hut.

Day 4North Arm Hut to Halfmoon Bay (Oban)Walk 5 hours / 12 km

Follow the sawmill track that runs alongside bays and through forest amongst the birds and other wildlife found on the shore of Paterson Inlet. Enjoy the walk on the beach of Halfmoon Bay populated by kamahi and rimu trees as you return to Oban.

Stay overnight at the South Seas Hotel in Oban.

Day 5Halfmoon Bay (Oban) - InvercargillFly to Invercargill.

This morning fly to Invercargill for your onward trip.

Many people choose the option to stay an extra night at Halfmoon Bay to enjoy some of the short local walks, visit Ulva Island, sea kayak in Paterson Inlet or browse the local craft stores

Cost per person

24 October 2017 to 28 April 2018

  • From NZ$469

Itinerary

Open All
Day 1Arrive Invercargill

Arrive Invercargill and stay one night at the Bella Vista Motel in Invercargill.

Day 2Invercargill - Halfmoon Bay (Oban) - Port William HutWalk 4-5 hours / 12 km

Oban’s Department of Conservation Visitor Centre is your journey's starting point as you make your way to Lee Bay where the track begins. Pass through the chain-link sculpture that commemorates the creation of Rakiura National Park, and follow the Little River to reach Maori Beach.

Trace the coastline and walk the length of the beach before climbing the ridge through the forest. Follow the path as it descends to the water's edge and leads you to your hut for the night at Port William located at the end of Magnetic Beach.

Day 3Port William Hut - North Arm HutWalk 6 hours / 13 km

Make your way inland and pass through an area once used for logging but now re-vegetated with podocarp forest growing alongside the original native forest. Climb to the summit ridge through a sequence of rimu, kamahi and rata forests. The lookout tower provides expansive views of Paterson Inlet and beyond to the Tin Range. 

Heading to Paterson Inlet, cross several bridged creeks as you make your way towards North Arm Hut.

Day 4North Arm Hut to Halfmoon Bay (Oban)Walk 5 hours / 12 km

Follow the sawmill track that runs alongside bays and through forest amongst the birds and other wildlife found on the shore of Paterson Inlet. Enjoy the walk on the beach of Halfmoon Bay populated by kamahi and rimu trees as you return to Oban.

Stay overnight at the South Seas Hotel in Oban.

Day 5Halfmoon Bay (Oban) - InvercargillFly to Invercargill.

This morning fly to Invercargill for your onward trip.

Many people choose the option to stay an extra night at Halfmoon Bay to enjoy some of the short local walks, visit Ulva Island, sea kayak in Paterson Inlet or browse the local craft stores

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