Attractions & activities
The Norfolk Island Golf Club is set within the Kingston and Arthurs Vale Historic Area (KAVHA), one of eleven former penal sites located around Australia that have been declared a World Heritage Site. Not only is it steeped in history, but this golf course is as picturesque as they come. After the game, set yourself up with a wine or beer and lunch at the onsite café, Aunt Mary’s Kitchen, and marvel at the uninterrupted views of the Southern Ocean.
There are a number of attractions that invite visitors to delve into the fascinating history of Norfolk Island. Visit KAVHA, the heritage region on the south of the island, where all four of Norfolk Island’s settlements – the Polynesians, the two Penal Settlements and the Pitcairn Island settlers – were established. The remnants of which still survive today as a living heritage site that reveals the multi-layered history of the island.
The Norfolk Museum is set within four historical buildings: the Pier Store, Commissariat Store, No. 10 Quality Row, and the HMS Sirius Museum – that houses artefacts inside the former Protestant Chapel (built in 1840) from the First Fleet flagship HMS Sirius that was wrecked off Kingston Reef in 1790.
Once you’ve brushed up on the history of the island it’s time to marvel at the artistic feat of Fletcher’s Mutiny Cyclorama: a 360-degree painting that depicts numerous scenes of the famous Bounty mutiny.
From history to food, stop by Hilli Goat farm for a tour of the clifftop home overlooking Anson Bay, meet the goats, learn about the cheese making process, sample the cheese and lotions, and enjoy a delectable tasting featuring dishes crafted with the farm-fresh produce. Alternatively, opt to visit Two Chimney Winery for a wine tasting accompanied by a sumptuous platter for lunch. Platters must be pre-booked.
Nature & beaches
Norfolk Island provides ample opportunities to explore its natural beauty. A colourful kaleidoscope of sea life awaits at Emily Bay Lagoon. Snorkel the sheltered reef off Lone Pine headland or swim with the kids in the calm waters – it is one of the safest beaches on the island, and has previously been named as one of TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Beaches in Australia.
Anson Bay isn’t recommended for swimming, but there is a winding track down to the beach that is not to be missed. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, return to the top to enjoy the views alongside a barbeque lunch.
The island is only 35 square kilometres in size but the National Park covers over five square kilometres of that land and provides visitors with over eight kilometres of walking tracks to traverse.
Take the 1.7-kilometre Bridle Track from the Captain Cook Monument along the coastline to the intersection of the Red Road Track. It’s classed as an easy to moderate walk with some steep sections to tackle, but the views make it all worth it.
There are also a number of beautiful walks through the Botanic Gardens, some of which are suitable for wheelchairs and strollers. None of the walks are long or overly difficult, but we recommend the Samson Circuit and Rainforest Gully Circuit.
And no matter where you choose to walk, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the rare Green Parrot. The precious bird can only be found on Norfolk Island and has been brought back from the brink of extinction through the island’s conservation efforts.
But if you’re just after the views minus the walk, drive up to the lookout at Mount Pitt for a 360-degree view of the whole island. Or make your way to the Puppies Point cliff top to admire the sunset and stay for the stars – Norfolk Island is a Gold Level Dark Sky Town.