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  • Woman in lush forest on Ulva Island, Stewart Island Woman in lush forest on Ulva Island, Stewart Island
    Listen to nature's soundtrack Ulva Island
  • Couple sightseeing on the Ulva Island Explorer Couple sightseeing on the Ulva Island Explorer
    Venture South Stewart Island

Ulva Island Explorer

30 March 2019

"Ulva Island Explorer with tour of Paterson Inlet"

A great tour with an informative skipper and an exceptionally good and well-informed guide on the island.

We learned about the natural features and interesting history of Stewart Island and Paterson Inlet. On Ulva Island the wonderful guide showed us otherwise hidden flora and fauna and explained the fascinating story of the island's recovery from predation and misuse to be now a small piece of natural paradise.

traveloz2, via TripAdvisor

9 November 2017

"An unexpected visit from a Southern Right Whale!"

We booked the Bird watching trip to Ulva Island.  We were surprised that there were only 3 of us on this trip!
Talk about a treat! Our crew was great, very informative and fun. We were on our way to Ulva Island when suddenly our captain spotted a whale breaching the water.   We spent quite a bit of time following him and watching. It was great! We saw blue penguins playing in the water and seals laying on rocks.   Our tour of Ulva Island was great. A very beautiful place and our guide was fantastic, sharing all sorts of information.  We saw several rare birds and the Southern Right Whale?!
It was the best finale to our last day in NZ! You can't beat it!

shutter_bug1971, San Antonio, Texas, USA via TripAdvisor

5 November 2017

Excellent value for money

Looks like this is the trip mum and I did today. For $95 it was excellent value. A bit of history, two free cups of tea/coffee, stopping to watch albatross fly near the boat, various little bays and (often old) buildings, and Ulva Island. Luckily the weather held out, I imagine Ulva Island wouldn't be so good in the wet unless you've got good raincoats & rainhats. One by one we came across a lot of different birds, led by our guide (Erin?). I'd never seen Yellowheads before. I missed the Stewart Island Robin the first time around (others saw it) but right near the end myself and another got a fantastic view of one. Though not fast enough to get a picture.

glennomeister, Wellington, NZ via TripAdvisor

2 April 2017

Maximum experience for travellers pressed for time

With only a short time to explore, we booked this cruise. We were warmly greeted, and the boat was very clean and tidy-including separate Ladies and Men's toilets!  We preordered a lunch and the portions were generous, and food was fresh.  The crew were professionally attired and knowledgeable of the land and sea.  Shortly after leaving the wharf we encountered a group of dolphins including a mother and calf.  Next a large group of albatrosses arrived in the waters, and they were exciting to watch.  Penguins greeted us as well.  The inlet tour was gorgeous and the guide shared its history as we cruised.  We disembarked at Ulva Island and we're split into small groups, each with a guide.  The guide facilitated numerous bird viewings-Stewart Island robins, mohua, saddlebacks, spoonbills, kaka, kakariki, and weka.  She also shared interesting facts about the flora.
Great value for price and time budgets!  Would highly recommend!

Visited April 2017

Kenna S via TripAdvisor

28 February 2017

Nice cruise and informative guide

A nice cruise combined with an informative guide made this trip interesting and useful.  They use a catamaran which tours the Inlet before stopping at Ulva Island for a 45 minute nature walk.  Guide was excited about the fauna and knew a lot about the nuances of trying to keep an Island pest free for native species.  Very enjoyable trip.

Visited February 2017

John M, Las Vegas, USA via TripAdvisor

30 October 2016

Rewarding few hours .......

Thoroughly enjoyed this 2.5 hr cruise including walk on Ulva Island.  If you have limited time on Stewart Island, this trip is a great introduction to bird, plants and trees.  Ulva Island is absolutely beautiful, guide Leah was very knowledgeable & informative.  We saw many bird species as well as learning about the plant life, trees, orchid spotting and a short beach walk.  I would love to return for more hours walking on Ulva Island as this brief trip whets the appetite for more.  The crew were good, boat comfortable; this is an excellent short trip.

Visited October 2016

Jan M, Cobram, Australia via TripAdvisor

21 April 2016

Great Experience

I really enjoyed the Paterson Inlet cruise.  The staff were really knowledgeable and friendly. I learnt lots from it and got to see lots of cool birds.  On Ulva island there were Robins that would jump around your feet because it's pest free so they have nothing to be afraid of.  I would definitely recommend doing this cruise and it is great for families too.

Visited April 2016

Aimee E, Havelock North, NZ via TripAdvisor

20 April 2016

Great afternoon on the water

Rain rain rain but that certainly didn't stop us from enjoying our afternoon out on this tour of Paterson Inlet.  The crew were great, the boat comfy and the nature around us amazing.  Fran was the albatross whisperer for the day and we had plenty of mollymawks surround the boat.
The walk on Ulva Island was wet but great. A little Stewart Island robin hopped around our feet so close you could almost touch it. Lots of gorgeous birdsong and interesting native forest facts from our guide Josephine.
Highly recommend doing this tour.

Visited April 2016

Catriona M, Havelock North, New Zealand via TripAdvisor

19 March 2016

This made my 60th

Leah, our guide on Ulva Island who was a convincing ornithologist and conservationist was an exceptional guide on this trip, the Albatross accompanying the catamaran for a feed, it was all wonderful stuff, than you so much.

Visited March 2016

JaneB57, Whangarei, New Zealand via TripAdvisor

5 February 2016

Outstanding trip

We went on the Paterson Inlet Cruise and had the same two guides from the Ferry trip over to the Island. What a pleasure to have two gentleman with a sense of humour and loads of knowledge about the Island and its inhabitants. Our guide Leah on the guided walk was just outstanding, her knowledge was incredible. we saw Robins, rifleman, a morepork, and another bird with a bright yellow head that is on the $100 note!! (can't remember the name...) All in all what a fabulous afternoon topped off by Spirit of New Zealand moored in the inlet , spectacular photo opportunity.

Visited January 2016

Sandra255106, Auckland, New Zealand via TripAdvisor

20 January 2016

Loved this tour

This tour is well worth booking as you get a boat trip to the island and a one hour walk with a guide through the forest. Our guide Bevan made it a good experience for us as he enthusiastically talked about the vegetation and spotted the birds for us.
Visited January 2016

730kayr, Tonbridge, UK via TripAdvisor

9 January 2016

Very educational

We had an amazing trip to Ulva Island. Our guide, Kylie was amazing. She knew everything there was to know and showed a real passion for the environment on Ulva Island. Would highly recommend to everyone.
Visited January 2016

Teresa W, Auckland, New Zealand via TripAdvisor

29 December 2015

Highlight was Guided Tour of Ulva Island

We went to Stewart Island by the ferry for the day and included the Paterson Inlet cruise in our package. The cruise was enjoyable but cruise but the highlight of the trip and worth a five-star rating was the hour or guided tour on Ulva Island. Our guides were very informative pointing out plant species such as orchids and birds. I got close up images of SI Robin, the endangered and rare Yellowhead. If you’re into wildlife rather than history of Stewart Island, then just take a tour that only goes to Ulva Island.
Visited November 2015

Ray P, Yateley, UK via TripAdvisor

12 March 2015

A brief insight and view into this wonderful place

...Stewart Island was wonderful and then to add this cruise and visit to Ulva Island and guided tour made it special. As a novice with flora and fauna and bird life it was great to now be able to recognise Saddlebacks Bell Birds and the cocky NZ robins it was all over far to quick.

The guide was good and answered every question along with the need to keep developing the redress from non-native visitors such as the introduced and feral animals and humans that have exploited this environment...

Visited February 2015

StPolo, Liverpool, UK via TripAdvisor

1 January 2015

Nature at its best

We didn't really know what to expect when we booked the tour in the visitor centre on Stewart Island, but as everyone we met so far recommended Ulva Island we couldn't really do anything wrong. We were surprised in a positive way by the trip around the tip of Stewart Island and the things we were told about some special places...

Visited December 2014

Mietzemaus, Munich, Germany via TripAdvisor

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