The South Pacific has been hiding a gem all this time. Norfolk Island defines what a true paradise on earth looks like. A lush national park takes up most of the landmass and serves as the home to endemic and rare species; beaches are unspoiled and free from crowds, and fishing is bountiful with excellent surfing and snorkelling opportunities in the sparkling turquoise waters.
With all these beauties, you would surely have a hard time envisioning this place that was once called hell in the Pacific. Instead of the nightmarish experiences of convicts who served life sentences in the area, today, all you can see are giant Norfolk pines shading white sandy beaches, attractive stone buildings, and the locals’ friendly faces.
If you are looking for a holiday like no other, Norfolk Island got it all for you.
Norfolk Island is a Gold-level Dark Sky Town
Light pollution is minimal on Norfolk Island which gives stars the chance to be at their brightest after sunset. The island has been designated with the highest status of Gold-level Dark Sky Town by the Australian Dark Sky Register in 2019.
This makes Norfolk Island a favorite among dreamy stargazers and amateur astronomers alike. Head over to the tallest peaks of the island, Mount Bates or Mount Pitt to get a 360-degree view of the stunning nightly show of the heavens.
Galleries and Museums Everywhere You Go
With less than 2,000 population, Norfolk Island serves as the home to five galleries, four attractive museums, and a World Heritage convict site, a rather remarkable per capita number of cultural institutions. Visitors can vividly imagine the early days of the island as a penal colony of Britain as they wander through the remains of old jails and historical buildings.
Authentic Paddock to Plate at Its Finest
There is no need for flashy ads for the fact that menus in the 20-odd cafes and restaurants on Norfolk Island are filled with locally grown, caught, foraged, organic, and seasonal food. Locals have always lived this way and will continue to do so.
The farmers’ market in Burnt Pine begins at 7 in the morning every Saturday, rain or shine, with lots of stalls laden with produce grown in the area’s rich volcanic soil. The island commemorates its bounty every November at the Taste Norfolk Island Food Festival. You can book in advance for a Progressive Dinner to meet the locals and enjoy local dishes at the same time.
Be in Awe of the Uluru of the Pacific
If you are up for the challenge, take on a guided tour to Phillip Island, the rugged rocky mass dubbed the Uluru of the Pacific protected by the Norfolk Island National Park. Phillip Island which is only 6 km from Norfolk is soaked in sunset colours with yellow, orange, and deep red soils that rise from the sea. This also serves as a sanctuary for endemic plants and seabirds and offers panoramic views back to Norfolk.
Get Lost and Discover the Treasures of the Island
Who would imagine that something as small as an 8×5 km dot in no-man’s-land will have so much in store for its visitors? There is more to the area than the changes in scenery and the captivating tropical waters.
Most of the island is a national park where rolling pastures and soaring Norfolk Island pines give way to the subtropical forests where endemic species live, including the Norfolk Island morepork owl and Norfolk Island green parrot.
Explore Norfolk Island and discover its hidden gems!