Just over two hours flying time from Sydney or Brisbane lies what Captain James Cook described in 1774 as “paradise on earth”.
Steeped in a tumultuous history, Norfolk Island is blessed with jaw-dropping scenery, pristine beaches and a fascinating past to discover.
If the unspoiled natural beauty of Norfolk or the gripping history lesson doesn’t do it for you, the diverse range of island activities surely will. From watersports, art gallery and museum hopping, pampering, progressive dinners, golfing and local tours, there is something to suit everyone.
We’ve put together some information to assist you with planning your holiday on our beautiful island. Please navigate through the options on the right to learn more and we look forward to seeing you at The Paradise Hotel & Resort soon.
Nestled among superbly landscaped gardens and handy to Norfolk Island shopping, restaurants and attractions, The Paradise Hotel & Resort is the perfect place to stay during your holiday in the South Pacific.
Paradise is situated on Queen Elizabeth Avenue, next door to the world famous Fletcher’s Mutiny Cyclorama and is a leisurely 10 minutes stroll to the Burnt Pine Shopping Precinct. The hotel is a short drive to the international airport, historical Kingston, beaches and most of the island’s star attractions.
We can happily arrange airport transfers and car hire during your stay on the island. Just ask!
Norfolk Island is an external, self governing territory of Australia. Before booking your flights we recommend you visit Norfolk Island Customs which provides excellent advice on passports, visas, quarantine and duty. There are relaxed regulations for travellers holding either an Australian or New Zealand passport.
Air New Zealand operates flights from Brisbane every Saturday and from Sydney every Monday and Friday. With additional flights offered during peak seasons. Visit their website for further information or to book at Air New Zealand website.
Further information about Norfolk Island is available on the Norfolk Island Tourism website.
See you in Paradise!
Although Norfolk Island generally has over 1300mm of rainfall each year, we can always do with more due to reliance on rainwater to supply most of the islands water needs.
Average temperatures range from 18C – 19C in Winter and 23C – 25C in Summer. However, nights tend to be cooler so don’t forget to pack a sweater.
Norfolk Island has over 170 km of sealed roads and its only 8km wide by 5km long! Once you are on the island how do you ensure you don’t miss an inch of it?
Being a small island there is no public transport networks. You can discover ‘The World of Norfolk’ by way of:
Providing the ultimate flexibility and from as little as $50.00 per day a hire car is the answer.
Facts for car hire include:
- There is a large selection of cars from numerous hire companies to suit your needs.
- Australian road rules apply.
- For most car hire you must be over 25 years of age.
- To drive on Norfolk Island you need to hold a current drivers license in your country of residence.
- The local speed limit ranges from 25-50km per hour.
- Livestock have the right of way on roads. Take care at night as cows are sometimes hard to see. Be mindful that the law states if you injure one you will have to compensate the owner – so make sure you take out insurance.
- There is no street lighting on the island.
Pushbikes can be hired on the island from ‘Land & Sea’ and with sealed and unsealed roads, island wide, there is an adventure around every corner for every level of experience.
Norfolk Island has a lot of hills so some areas are not for the faint hearted but there are also great flat precincts for a leisurely and picturesque ride.
There is only one taxi on the island so it is advisable to book it in advance if required. However most accommodation houses have courtesy buses or will arrange to have you picked up from restaurants or planned activities.
There are a myriad of tours on the island to ensure you see everything ‘The World of Norfolk” has to offer. These can all be booked once you arrive either directly or via your accommodation.
Trying to keep fit or just love the outdoors? You can walk just about everywhere on the island. But please ensure you take a torch at night as there is no street lights.
A little history:
During the 14th and 15th centuries Norfolk Island was inhabited by East Polynesian sailors that had travelled from the Islands around New Zealand to find a new land. Although it is not known what killed off these settlers, their history is still present in the banana trees that they planted during their stay.
In 1774 the first European explorer to discover the Island was Captain James Cook, who had set sail two years earlier for general discovery and search of new materials. He officially gave the Island its “Norfolk” name after the Duchess of Norfolk back home in England. Cook was particularly impressed with the tall trees and new species of plant, sending back samples to the UK. The flax plant and hemp found on the Island were considered a good material for ship sails and ropes and the wood was seen as a great resource. Also as food the crew particularly enjoyed the Palm Cabbage. Cook did not find anything to suggest there were previous settlers so to them they were the first to set foot on the Island and were proud of their new discovery of a beautiful land abundant with efficient materials.
After Russia began to play hardball with their supply of hemp and other materials, Britain needed a new supply and looked to Norfolk Island for help. Without the material their ships and Navy would become weak, so it was decided that they would colonise the Island. 1787 was the year the uninhabited Island was put to use and it not only proved to be a valuable resource for flax and hemp but also as a destination for convicts sent overseas, which had become common practice several years earlier.
However it was soon discovered that the Island wasn’t as perfect as first thought. There weren’t many safe landing spots for ships and wood ended up being too weak for making masts. It then dawned on them that the flax plant was too difficult to prepare and nobody had the skills to weave it. On top of this prisoners became unruly and idle, making the whole project slow to a halt. The Island’s purpose quickly changed to producing crops and taking on the overbearing convicts from Sydney.
By 1825 the Island was completely abandoned as it had proven too costly and remote to maintain. Many were reluctant to leave the beauty of an Island that they helped prosper, but they were ultimately forced to destroy everything so no other settlers could benefit from what they’d created.
Shortly after they began using the Island again (but this time as a prison for the “worst” convicts) it became known as “Hell in Paradise,” and remained a secluded mess until 1855 when the operation was moved to Tasmania.
On 8 June 1856 the ever-growing Tahitian population from the Pitcairn Islands got permission to settle on the Island and began rebuilding and evolving the area in to more of what we see today. The Island was briefly used as a refuelling depot for World War II and as a base for the New Zealand army.
Finally In 1979, Norfolk Island was given limited self government by Australia and more or less remains independent. Although tourism is growing, the Island is considered one of the few remaining paradise destinations in the world.