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Norfolk Island

A pine-studded speck in

the South Pacific Ocean

Norfolk Island is a tiny 8km x 5km island located between Australia and New Zealand and very much exposed to the wind and swell from the South Pacific. Captain Cook encountered it in 1774 and named it after the Duchess of Norfolk. It is a picturesque, pristine environment with beautiful beaches, a rugged coastline, World Heritage convict site, historic cemetery and National Parks dotted with the iconic Norfolk Island pines. Originally settled by East Polynesians, Norfolk Island was colonised by Great Britain as part of its settlement of Australia in 1788. The island served as a convict penal settlement until May 1855, except for an 11-year hiatus between 1814 and 1825, when it was abandoned. In 1856 Queen Victoria granted permission for the inhabitants of Pitcairn to settle here as their island was no longer habitable. In 1901, the island became a part of the Commonwealth of Australia. Our morning tour of the island first visited the lookout for fabulous views of the coast, Philip Island, penal colony, golf course and historic cemetery. Onward to Cascadas Bay, St Barnabas Chapel. with a tea stop in the garden of a residence built by Fletcher Quintal (descendant of Mutineers of the HMS Bounty’s Fletcher Christian and Matthew Quintal) We enjoyed a picnic lunch of red emperor fish at Emily Bay before visiting the Botanical Gardens with its 40 endemic, or unique species. On our return to the ship we visited the historical Georgian settlements of Kingston on Quality Row. These were originally built for use by the military officers of the penal settlement, and were then used as residences by the Pitcairn settlers after the closure of the penal settlement. Most of these old houses are restored to some degree, with one even functioning as a church with regular worship services. Then we walked around the ruins of the old jail. Kingston also has the oldest cricket pitch in the Southern Hemisphere - and one which is still used regularly by the islanders.


Norfolk Island has a steady, mild climate of between 10 to 26 degrees all year. Officially classified as a marine subtropical climate, it gets over 1300mm of rain every year. Due to the warm, damp atmosphere moss grows on the tree trunks and even on telephone wire poles.


Wherever you travel around Norfolk Island you will see an abundance of spiders with very impressive, large spider webs. There are no snakes, centipedes or other nasty creepy crawlies and no sand flies or fruit flies.
SOUTH SEAS CRUISE - Norfolk Island