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“An awesome experience”

Wild Kiwi Encounter - Stewart Island Experience
Ranked #11 of 16 Tours in Stewart Island
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Cruise at dusk to Little Glory Bay for an opportunity to encounter wild southern brown kiwi in their natural habitat. Depart Halfmoon Bay, Oban at dusk for a cruise across Paterson Inlet. During the cruise, pass Ulva Island (a predator-free sanctuary) and learn about Stewart Island's rich history. The walk, led by a nature guide, is on a track across the peninsula, through spectacular coastal forest to a secluded sandy beach. The track emerges on a wide sandy beach and as daylight diminishes, this is where Southern brown kiwi (Rakiura Tokoeka) are often found feeding among the grasses and seaweed. - Departures: Sep - May - Small group: 8 per guide, max 16 per night.
Reviewed 2 April 2018

Normally when it comes to pre-booked events I am unlucky. It had been a rainy day in Stewart Island and I feared the worst but the weather calmed before our trip, and a beautiful full moon lit our way. Pre boat trip our knowledgeable guide Ian talked us through about Kiwis. We boarded our boat (with another Ian skippering) and made our way to Little Glory Bay. The group I was with was understanding and appreciative, and walked through the bush quietly whilst Ian listened for Kiwi activity - unfortunately there was none and I started to think oh well I will not see anything. However once we hit the moonlit beach we quickly came across 2 hungry Kiwi. Ian kept them in his red light beam so we could view them without disturbing them although they seemed oblivious to us for the most part. We inspected their tracks and even some sandhoppers that been missed. I was excited to get close and get some great photos and a couple of films with only a standard digital camera. People have to realise that this is nature and not a game park. I feel privileged to have seen my views and hope everyone else is so lucky. Coffee and biscuits on the way home topped off the night. Thank you to both Ian's

Thank Bokke_on_tour
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Real_Journeys, Guest Relations Manager at Wild Kiwi Encounter - Stewart Island Experience, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2018

Kia Ora and thanks for this amazing review. We are absolutely thrilled to see how much you enjoyed this experience. You are absolutely correct in saying that this is nature and not a game park. Everything is run in a way to minimize our impact on the kiwi and allow people to observe in their natural habitat. It's great to have such an appreciative group and our guides do an amazing job in finding the kiwi and allowing as much time as possible with them. We will be sure to pass your comments onto the team here - they love getting great feedback! We hope the rest of your time in New Zealand was just as memorable.
Kind regards, the team at Stewart Island Experience.

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"split into groups"
in 3 reviews
"muddy conditions"
in 2 reviews
"magical experience"
in 2 reviews
"new zealand"
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"shoes"
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"bugs"
in 2 reviews
"kiwi"
in 20 reviews
"presence"
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"path"
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"outing"
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"wildlife"
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3 - 7 of 32 reviews

Reviewed 23 March 2018 via mobile

First time to see kiwi and they are so adorable. Maybe it’s a bit expensive but you also get lots of information from the trip. Highly recommend!!

Thank NicoleChiu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 March 2018

There is little point in going to Stewart Island unless you plan to see kiwis. Wild Kiwi Encounter is the perfect choice. Johnny Sharplin is an exceptionally knowledgeable, exceptionally caring guide. He led us through the dark forest, stopping occasionally to point out kiwi calls and kiwi beak holes. I have no idea how he was able to initially spot this holes with a flashlight, but he did. We reached the beach and Johnny located a kiwi. Neither Johnny nor the kiwi were in a rush to leave, and we enjoyed a long, lingering viewing. Obviously seeing kiwis is up to chance, but Johnny also found us one on the return trip. We had about 16 on the trip, with one other guide, so the ratio of guide to client was perfect. Hot drinks and coffee were included in the trip.
A photography tip: you can use your iPhone--the pictures I have posted were with my iPhone. I also used my digital camera with a strong telephoto lens and an ISO setting of 6400.

Thank PraisePhotogrphy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Real_Journeys, Guest Relations Manager at Wild Kiwi Encounter - Stewart Island Experience, responded to this reviewResponded 20 March 2018

Kia Ora and thanks for posting this review. We are delighted to see how much you enjoyed this trip and to learn how well Johnny looked after you all. We have passed on this feedback to him already! Hope the rest of your time in the region was just as good.
Regards, the team at Stewart Island Experience.

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Reviewed 27 February 2018

If you're interested in seeing a kiwi this is a must do trip. It was unlike anything we'd experienced. Johnny was our guide. He was knowledgeable and helpful. He was able to locate a kiwi on the beach that we followed for well over half an hour.

Thank meanmoma3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Real_Journeys, Guest Relations Manager at Wild Kiwi Encounter - Stewart Island Experience, responded to this reviewResponded 20 March 2018

Hi there! Thanks for posting this awesome review. Johnny will be delighted to read your feedback. We trust you enjoyed the rest of your time on Stewart Island and hope to see you again.
Kind regards, the team at Stewart Island Experience.

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Reviewed 12 February 2018 via mobile

This trip is a great experience if you’re interested in wildlife. Our guide ‘Jonny’ was very knowledgable and obviously passionate about kiwis so it was great to listen to the very informative introductory talk before the cruise.

Once on the boat we saw albatross before we even reached the island.

The small groups this tour takes makes sure everyone gets a great view of the kiwi - we just saw the one but down on the beach where we could all get a good view. The guide had fantastic skills and was able to track and hear things that the rest of us were unaware of!

Definitely worth the money, but take warm blotches and be aware it will be late!

Thank Cherry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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