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The Catlins - New Zealand Travel Information

Photos from The Catlins

אריה ים ניו זילנדי - New Zealand sea lion קטלינס - The Catlins יער מאובן - מפרץ קוריו - קטלינס קטלינס - נקודת נאגט קטלינס - נקודת נאגט קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins קטלינס - The Catlins

Catlins is the name of seashore strip embracing the south part of the south island. The strip is located between Invacargil and Dunedin. In order to travel in this area there is a need for a private transportation.

The Catlins is full of interesting places for stopping and offers variety of sceneries and animal life. Here are some places that I found to be especially interesting.

Getting to The Catlins

To travel around the Catlins you will usually need your own transportation.

Curio Bay

In Curio Bay lies one of the most extensive fossil forests in the world, and it can be seen during low tide. This fossil forest is about 160 million years old. The trees and fossil?s stumps are evidence that New Zealand was a part of the Gondwanaland super-continent in the past, since those fossils are identical to the ones in South America identified from the same era.

In Curio Bay lives a small colony of yellowed eye penguins, which can be observed 2 hours before sunset, as they come out of the ocean, going to their nests.


Getting there

Curio Bay is located 88 km south-east of Invercargill.

Waipapa Point

Waipapa Point is the place where the second biggest sea catastrophe in New Zealand occurred. In 1881 the SS Tararua ship hit Otara Reef, about 1 km from shore. Out of 151 passengers, only 20 survived. 65 of the victims are buried in the close cemetery. In 1884 a lighthouse was build on the shore to prevent a similar catastrophe to reoccur.

Waipapa Point attracts New Zealand?s Sea Lions and various water-birds, which can be observed while they are resting on shore,

Nugget Point

In my opinion, Nugget Point is the prettiest among the Catlins. The small islands near the lighthouse (established in 1869) seem to vanish in the horizon.

The area is full of various animals, leaving all together. You can view hairy seals lying next to huge sea elephants and to other water birds.

It is recommended to visit the point in the late afternoon or early morning. These are the most beautiful hours during the day and you can watch a vast number of animals.

Those who are interesting in watching the penguins can do it in Roaring Bay, located near Nugget Point?s parking lot, from a well hidden viewpoint. The best time to see them is about 2 hours before sunset, as they come out from the ocean going back to their nests.

Jack's Bay

About 30 minutes walk from Jack?s Bay there is Jack?s Blowhole. This 55 meter blowhole is located 200 meters from the ocean and the water is getting there through an underground tunnel.
At high tide and rough sea, the sight of waves crashing into the bottom of the blowhole from the underground tunnel is beautiful. Unfortunately the photos from the blowhole itself do not reflect the beauty of it?

Jack?s Bay is named after Tuhawaiki Tahu Maori chief Home (Jack) Nagi who lived there at the beginning of the 19th century.