Wherever you stay on Norfolk Island, you’ll quickly realise that everything is right at your fingertips.There are two main town centres, Kingston and Burnt Pine, both are great bases for getting out and about on the island. Kingston is the capital of the island and a tourist hotspot for its restored historic buildings, while Burnt Pine is larger and the place to go for duty free shopping. Be sure to check out the markets on Sunday! Other highlights include the amazing 360-degree painting at Fletcher’s Mutiny Cyclorama, Pitcairn Settlers Village, the Captain Cook Monument and St Barnabas Chapel.
Often touted as one of the best beaches in Australia, the azure waters of Emily Bay are hard to resist. Surrounded by golden sand and towering pines, the sheltered lagoon is home to a variety of marine life. The clarity of the water makes it the perfect spot for snorkelling or swimming. Adjacent to the Kingston Historic Area, you can soak in the sunshine and admire the beautiful scene that unfolds in front of you. You could also join a glass bottom boat tour and sail along the turquoise water while admiring the stunning coral below.
One of the island’s most beautiful landmarks, St Barnabas Church is certainly worth exploring. A historic place of worship completed in 1880, the church was built as a memorial to Bishop Patterson. Today it hosts a church service on Sunday mornings and is open to the public seven days a week. Be sure to pop by and admire the intimate chapel complete with wooden pews, exquisite stained-glass windows, coloured marble flooring and ornate decorations.
Most tours around the island will make a point to stop at Old Kingston Town. Situated at the centre of the World Heritage Listed Kingston and Arthurs Vale Historic Area, the town boasts many historic monuments and landmarks that have been remarkably well preserved. As the second-oldest town in Australia and one of the few convict sites, the surroundings have great cultural significance. To learn more, it is also worthwhile visiting the Norfolk Island Museum.
For scenic coastal views, spend an afternoon hiking along the northern part of the coast. Here you will find the spectacular Captain Cook Monument, erected where Captain James Cook is believed to have explored back in 1774. Continue along the Bridle Track and take in the magnificent views of the many islets. If you are feeling adventurous, keep going until you reach the Bird Rock lookout – just don’t forget to bring the camera!
To truly appreciate the island’s incredible natural beauty, head to the peak of Mount Pitt. At 320 metres above sea level, the summit provides matchless 360 degree views of the whole island. Accessible by car, it’s the perfect place to bring a picnic and admire a magical sunrise or sunset. It is also a great starting point for a number of walking tracks in the National Park or stroll over to Mt Bates, the highest point on the island.