The world of the Chathams is your paua (although there are oysters here). Hotel Chatham's tours will show you our incredible place with our own guides. We have general tour itineraries to suit the time you have available here or you may have areas of special interest to pursue.
We have our own vehicles for groups or independent self-drive tours and remember there is no public transport on Chatham Island. Many places of interest are on privately-owned land so both local knowledge and access is essential to make your visit one you'll remember forever.
Hotel Chatham can tailor a fully inclusive holiday package to suit your group’s special interest such as history, ornithology, photography, diving or you name it. We can recommend the best things to do, organise bookings, catering and transport. Local guides will accompany your group to make your experience unique. Some specialist tours are hosted by specialist guides.
An excursion to Pitt Island is a popular additional tour visitors enjoy. This should be arranged directly with the operators.
Meet locals around the island. See where and how they live. Listen to their stories of yesterday and today. See what locals are doing to make a living. Catch a netball match or the annual Jockey Club meeting. You can do a little or a lot, but it's the place to take a breather from your other hectic life. One journalist recently wrote about the island, "Unpredictable, unfussy, utterly memorable."
For a place with so little population, so far away from anywhere else, you will be amazed at the history of the Chathams. From the arrival of Moriori in about 1500, Europeans in 1791, Maori in 1835 and German Morovian missionaries in 1843 right through to the crayfishing boom of the 1960's, there are countless stories and places of interest. That includes the 1959 Sunderland NZ4111 crash in Te Whanga Lagoon. The aircraft was recovered and can be seen near Kaingaroa.
The Chatham Islands have a complex geology with ancient volcanoes, basalt columns, schists and sediments, including limestone. The land has been eroded, uplifted and drowned countless times, resulting in a diversity of environments. Guided by geologist and research scientist, Hamish Campbell, these tours are a fascinating insight into the diversity of these isolated islands.
You'll be spoilt for choice when it comes to walking or hiking. Walks organised by Hotel Chatham are conducted across private land so walkers must be accompanied by a tour guide. The guides have extensive knowledge of the local areas, flora and fauna so our trips are informative as well as scenic.
A must-do, all-inclusive day tour includes return airport transfers, return flights to Pitt Island on Air Chathams 5-passenger aircraft.
This is a fully escorted tour showing off Pitt Island highlights: Mt Hakepa, Glory Cottage, Flower Pott Jail, Waihere Bay and Moriori and European history.
Lunch is hosted at Flower Pott Lodge.
Minimum passenger numbers apply
Subject to weather conditions
Take a fishing or diving tour for a real Chatham Island experience. We run our tours with seasoned operators.
Hotel Chatham Fishing Charter $200pp Half Day
Or if hunting is your thing, you can track and shoot introduced animals which now pose a threat to indigenous flora and fauna of the Chatham Islands including swan, ducks, boar, wild sheep and wild bull.
Subject to weather conditions and hunting seasons
With so many indigenous plant species on the Chathams, there is much to see, if things botanic are you. We can arrange botanic tours with a specialist guide. See the Chatham Island Forget-Me-Not (myosotidium hortensia) in their natural habitat or en masse at Admiral Garden; Lois Croon's absolutely fabulous garden. Also see other endemic plants, including rautini, kekeretehe, the Chatham Islands ice plant, mahoe and the karama.
It's amazing how many unique endemic species there are on the islands. Similar to mainland species but never-the-less different. Chatham Island Shags, Pitt Island Shags, Chatham Island Taiko, Chatham Island Oyster Catchers, Chatham Petrels, Black Robins, Parea (Chatham Island Wood Pigeon), Chatham Island Warblers, Chatham Island Fantails, Chatham Island Tui and Chatham Island Tomtits and red-crowned parakeets make for outstanding bird life here. Other wildlife includes albatross, penguin, wekas, seals and even emus.
The Chatham Islands offer outstandingly beautiful and ruggedly raw photographic opportunities for wildlife, landscape, historical ruins, shipwrecks, tea-stained streams plus sunrises and sunsets from a variety of vantage points. Fully escorted and mentoring by multi-award-winning photographer Lesley Whyte, you can join women-only or mixed-gender small group photography tours.
LUXURY TOURS FOR WOMEN
Girls on the Road Again offers awesomely fun, fully escorted luxury tours for women to the Chatham Islands. Led by Lesley Whyte, these small group tours explore the Chatham’s rugged beauty, including places that only the locals know about. The days are filled with exploration and the evenings, laughter and good times.