Walking: Pitt Island has over 12 kilometres of public road and plenty of beaches to wander along. Most times you will have the beaches to yourself and traffic usually isn’t too much of a problem on Pitt Island. Guests at Rauceby Homestays are fortunate to have exclusive access around Rauceby farm. From cliffs and coastal scenery, to bush-clad gullies, steep hills and sweeping pastures. We’ve got it all. That will keep you occupied for a while. Take a stroll down to nearby Waihere bay and have dig around on the beach for buried treasure (really!) or simply relax and soak up the spectacular scenery.
Sightseeing: Martie, or one of the crew, will take you on a guided tour of all the most important historical, geographical and cultural sites on the island. Covering a fair bit of the central highway (all 12 kilometres of it) we can go from the main port of Flowerpot, to the historically interesting Glory Bay and all points in between. You will get a guided tour that highlights the intriguing history of this beautiful little dot in the ocean, and you’ll probably meet a few other locals during the day. (More cups of tea!)
Fishing: Whether you are fishing from a chartered fishing boat, or from the rocks or the wharf, you can catch all sorts of fish around Pitt Island. Moki, Groper, Blue Cod are all available and waiting to be caught. You can also don a wetsuit and jump in with them if you are that way inclined. (Wetsuits not supplied)
Hunting: If you, or someone in your group are keen on hunting “Pitt Island-style, then you have come to the right place. Martie knows where all the best spots are and he knows just when to be there. Come along on a night-time pighunt and experience the thrill of hot pursuit behind the dogs (and hopefully the pigs) as you plunge through the foliage.
For the more gentlemanly hunting type, having a crack at the infamous Pitt Island Wild Sheep will be a test of your wits, accuracy and often, your fitness. These are rather intelligent animals (for sheep) and many an over-confident hunter has returned home with nothing but mud, sweat and tears to show for an afternoon.
A real novelty for visitors to these parts can be hunting Weka. Protected on the mainland of New Zealand, these flightless, miniature, kiwi-like birds are fair game here and at the right time of the year they provide a welcome addition to the table if prepared properly (being cooked tends to be the most welcome way.)
Fossicking: For rare shells and stones. Spending a bit of time on the shores searching for Gold or Greenstone could be an enjoyable past-time and certainly time-consuming. However, neither of these minerals are found here, (unless they’ve been dropped) but there are plenty of other things to pick up and collect from the beaches.
History: Pitt Island is one of those special places where the history is right there waiting to be seen. Visit the Jail, carved out of limestone on the beach at Flowerpot Bay back in the whaling days. Climb in and imagine what it must have been like to be chained up in there at high tide. Ask Martie about the earlier inhabitants of this island. Visit culturally-significant sites where the Moriori lived before they were taken away by force over 180 years ago.
Conservation: Pitt Island is home to numerous indigenous species of bird, plants and insects, many of which are specific to the island or to the Chathams.
Beachcombing: Comb our beaches for free. If you find buried treasure, you can keep some of it. We have so much buried treasure that we dont even know how much there is. Who knows what treasure you might find. If you get bored with that, then you can bury some treasure. (Please note: Treasure not supplied).
Farm Tours: Come and have a guided tour around one of the best performing farms on Pitt Island. Despite the relaxed attitude that you may have observed in our farm staff, this really is a working farm. If we have something going on and you want to participate or just come and have a look, feel free to do so. If we are shearing sheep, mustering stock or drafting cattle, you can get involved as well.
Stargazing: If you want clear skies, no lights and unlimited stars to gaze at, then Rauceby Homestays is the place to be. Bring your scope and come and study the heavens from the deck in front of Rauceby Homestays.
Relaxing: Come and sit on the deck and watch the world go past, 24 hours a day if you want.
This is the best place to sit and read, chat, eat, drink, hit golf balls from, photograph (views, birds, clouds, flying and resting golfballs) and just generally enjoy being here.