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Private Walking Track New Zealand Guided Walking Tours Kaikoura

KAIKOURA WILDERNESS WALKS
All inclusive guided walk on our spectacular private walking track north of Kaikoura on the east coast of New Zealandís South Island.

History

Kaikoura has one of the longest records of human habitation in New Zealand, thought to date back over a 1000 years.

Early Polynesian settlers were drawn to the region by its temperate climate, abundant seafood and major forests that teamed with bird life. These early settlers ventured into the surrounding Seaward Kaikoura Mountains to harvest the treasured titi or shearwater, an alpine nesting seabird that was traded, for the highly prized greenstone, with tribes further south.

By the mid 1800's the European settlers arrived, drawn here by the riches of the sea particularly the abundant seal and whale resources. Unfortunately these were hunted relentlessly until numbers were reduced to a point where it was no longer viable to continue. These settlers then began harvesting the surrounding forest and converting the cleared land into farmland which dominates the landscape today.

Many traditional place names of significance in the region have survived eg. Puhi Puhi means "to gather feathers" and one of the highest mountains in the region Te Ao Whekere translates to "World of the Gods".

Today, within the Puhi Peaks Nature Reserve, exist landscapes and forests of extraordinary diversity harbouring some of the region's rarest and endangered plant and animal species. These are now protected, in perpetuity, by a Queen Elizabeth II National Trust Open Space Covenant. Kaikoura Wilderness Walks, with the exclusive Shearwater Lodge situated in the reserve, offers a place of escape and inspiration; truly a wilderness romance.