Take five: Stewart Island/Rakiura

With a permanent population of around 400, the island  booms during the cruise season. But come...
With a permanent population of around 400, the island booms during the cruise season. But come Easter weekend, the doors shut, the ‘‘closed’’ signs go up and the only restaurant open is the South Sea Hotel. Barista Chelsea Broom describes the place as...
Rakiura translates as ‘‘glowing skies’’, a reference to the Southern Lights, which can  be seen...
Rakiura translates as ‘‘glowing skies’’, a reference to the Southern Lights, which can be seen from the island. Stewart Island is named after William Stewart, the first mate aboard the sealer Pegasus, who charted Port Pegasus in 1809.
Graham Cowley has worked for more than 20 years as ferry skipper, taking passengers between Bluff...
Graham Cowley has worked for more than 20 years as ferry skipper, taking passengers between Bluff and Stewart Island. He said the crossing could be really rough and advised skippers not to cross if it was not safe.
Locals often advise  Foveaux Strait is so rough at this longitude that on even the clearest day...
Locals often advise Foveaux Strait is so rough at this longitude that on even the clearest day the most sea-hardened passengers might feel their stomachs turn on the hour-long ferry journey.
Residents Anita Herbert and Jo Leask say  in a small community everyone knows each other by their...
Residents Anita Herbert and Jo Leask say in a small community everyone knows each other by their first names.

The fish is always fresh, seeing a kiwi is likely and the place is fuelled by the energy of its people.

The small community of Stewart Island/Rakiura is one of the most isolated in New Zealand, but the residents make up for that  with their friendly approach.

Part of the island’s charm is that you not only feel disconnected from the rest of the world, but also feel you have joined an exclusive  club of people who have
experienced this place. 

Luisa Girao took her camera to see what makes Stewart Island so special.

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