An Insight to Norfolk Island
Villa Tour Leader Chris Slee explains why Norfolk Island is one of the most amazing places in Australia you can visit. With so many departures for this amazing island, this will have you reaching for the phone to book!
Where in the world could you possibly be where they have a language without a single swear word? Unbelievably, you are still in Australia, one of our territories in fact, the beautiful Norfolk Island.
The language is a blend of the Old English of the Bounty mutineers and the Tahitian of the islanders either who accompanied them or who were taken as prisoners to Pitcairn Island. However, don’t worry, being good Aussies, they’ll tell you they use English if they do need to swear!
Situated in the Pacific Ocean, closer to New Zealand than Australia, this small island has so much to offer. The scenery is gorgeous and being a sub-tropical climate, the warm, crystal clear turquoise water will draw in even the most reluctant swimmers. Then there is the haunting and gruesome history of Norfolk as a convict settlement, designated for the worst repeat offender convicts. The convict buildings have been restored and the well-informed guides from Pinetree Tours can tell many stories of the tragedies and hardships of those imprisoned here.
There is the fascinating history of the Bounty mutineer’s descendants who were granted Norfolk Island by Queen Victoria after their Pitcairn Island home became severely overcrowded. The Pitcairn Settlers Village gives an insight into the life of Norfolk Islanders in those early years. The pace of life on the island is relaxed. Why wouldn’t it be when the maximum speed limit is the fastest speed a cow can walk, supposedly 50 km per hour (by the way, cows have right of way on the roads). It may also have something to do with the number of potholes in the roads. One local told me that the potholes have all been “heritage listed” and that’s why they can’t touch them. You’ll find that the locals have a great sense of humour and fun.
If you like clean air, no rubbish lying around, no snakes or poisonous spiders, friendly locals, little crime and fabulous shopping then you will love Norfolk. Most of the fresh food is grown on the island, in the rich, deep, volcanic topsoil and is delicious. Then there is the fish! I regard it as the best I have ever had without a word of a lie.
Being only a small island and without major industry, they rely heavily on tourism. Luckily for us, they do it very well. Everyone waves wherever you go, you will be made to feel welcome and you’ll feel like you’ve had experiences that are quite unique. The Progressive Dinner will give you an insight into the lives of local families as you share a meal. Mutiny on the Bounty is a local production with a ¾ size replica of the Bounty and the Wonderland by Night is an entertaining and cultural experience.
I’m sure you’ll return home as a Norfolk Island ambassador, everyone does, and the really good news is that you’ll want to come again.
So, what’s stopping you? I have been 8 times and feel like a local and I can’t wait to go back.
Check out villa's new Norfolk Island holidays departing in 2018. Click here for the full itineraries.