Subantarctic Islands

Subantarctic Islands

Overview

The Subantarctic Islands are tiny havens for some of the most abundant and unique wildlife on the planet. They lie in the cool temperate or Subantarctic Zone to the south and east of New Zealand in the great southern ocean that encircles Antarctica. This is a windswept and at times forbidding swath of sea, surprising in its fecundity.

The Subantarctic Islands are comprised of six groups: the Bounty Islands, the Antipodes, the Snares, the Auckland Islands, Campbell Island and Macquarie Island. Flora and fauna are densely concentrated in the Subantarctic Islands: the number of indigenous plants and seabirds found in the Subantarctic Islands is far greater than that found on similar groups in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

It is little wonder that these islands of the Subantarctic are all Nature Reserves and World Heritage sites. As such, the New Zealand and Australian Governments that administer them afford the Subantarctic Islands the highest protection. Tourism is allowed, but only under special license, and numbers are restricted to minimise impact and to ensure a world class wilderness and wildlife experience. The Subantarctic Islands not only play an important role in the Southern Ocean ecosystem - they also have a rich human history. From their discovery 200 years ago, they were exposed to an era of exploitation. In time we began to understand their true worth and treasure them for their intrinsic value as wild and beautiful places. Visiting them is a pleasure and a privilege. You will not be disappointed.

Birding Down Under is our most comprehensive exploration of the Subantarctic Islands. This 18 day expedition explores seven different island groups including the remote Antipodes, Bounty and Chatham Islands. Our Galapagos of the Southern Ocean voyage encompassing the New Zealand Subantarctic Islands as well as wildlife rich Macquarie Island, is so popular that we now run two voyages per season.

Our eight day Forgotten Islands of the South Pacific voyage takes you to a part of New Zealand that few have been privileged enough to visit. On Beyond Fiordland: New Zealand's Wildest Islands we explore Fiordland, Stewart and Ulva Islands and the Subantarctics as we journey back to where the Heritage Expeditions story began more than 35 years ago.

Every expedition aims at maximising the opportunities for all participants, regardless of your interest, with quality time ashore with experienced guides who know the islands and the wildlife well. We also include the Subantarctic Islands on our Antarctic Expeditions.

Plan a Subantarctic adventure today. Questions or ready to book one of these exciting expeditions? Please contact us today or call toll free and speak with an Expedition Specialist.

Overview

The Subantarctic Islands are tiny havens for some of the most abundant and unique wildlife on the planet. They lie in the cool temperate or Subantarctic Zone to the south and east of New Zealand in the great southern ocean that encircles Antarctica. This is a windswept and at times forbidding swath of sea, surprising in its fecundity.

The Subantarctic Islands are comprised of six groups: the Bounty Islands, the Antipodes, the Snares, the Auckland Islands, Campbell Island and Macquarie Island. Flora and fauna are densely concentrated in the Subantarctic Islands: the number of indigenous plants and seabirds found in the Subantarctic Islands is far greater than that found on similar groups in the South Atlantic and Indian Oceans.

It is little wonder that these islands of the Subantarctic are all Nature Reserves and World Heritage sites. As such, the New Zealand and Australian Governments that administer them afford the Subantarctic Islands the highest protection. Tourism is allowed, but only under special license, and numbers are restricted to minimise impact and to ensure a world class wilderness and wildlife experience. The Subantarctic Islands not only play an important role in the Southern Ocean ecosystem - they also have a rich human history. From their discovery 200 years ago, they were exposed to an era of exploitation. In time we began to understand their true worth and treasure them for their intrinsic value as wild and beautiful places. Visiting them is a pleasure and a privilege. You will not be disappointed.

Birding Down Under is our most comprehensive exploration of the Subantarctic Islands. This 18 day expedition explores seven different island groups including the remote Antipodes, Bounty and Chatham Islands. Our Galapagos of the Southern Ocean voyage encompassing the New Zealand Subantarctic Islands as well as wildlife rich Macquarie Island, is so popular that we now run two voyages per season.

Our eight day Forgotten Islands of the South Pacific voyage takes you to a part of New Zealand that few have been privileged enough to visit. On Beyond Fiordland: New Zealand's Wildest Islands we explore Fiordland, Stewart and Ulva Islands and the Subantarctics as we journey back to where the Heritage Expeditions story began more than 35 years ago.

Every expedition aims at maximising the opportunities for all participants, regardless of your interest, with quality time ashore with experienced guides who know the islands and the wildlife well. We also include the Subantarctic Islands on our Antarctic Expeditions.

Plan a Subantarctic adventure today. Questions or ready to book one of these exciting expeditions? Please contact us today or call toll free and speak with an Expedition Specialist.

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Subantarctic Islands Expeditions

Beyond Fiordland: New Zealand's Wildest Islands
20% off selected departures

Explore New Zealand's Subantarctic Auckland, Snares and Campbell Islands along with the untamed wilderness of Fiordland's ice-carved mountains, forests and fiords. Encounter threatened native species flourishing on Stewart Island's Ulva Island on this iconic, 12-day expedition cruise of remote New Zealand.

28 Dec 2024

Birding Down Under: Subantarctic and Chatham Islands

Discover the 'Albatross Latitudes and explore the most remote Subantarctic islands including Snares, Bounty, Antipodes, Auckland, Campbell, Macquarie & Chatham Islands on this comprehensive 17-day expedition perfect for those interested in birds, history, wildlife.

3 Dec 2024

Forgotten Islands of the South Pacific: Subantarctic Islands

Campbell Island, Auckland Islands & the Snares Islands, these UNESCO World Heritage Sites are some of the most wildlife rich islands. This voyage is timed to coincide with the flowering of the megaherbs which paint the landscape vivid colours.

28 Dec 2024

Galapagos of the Southern Ocean: New Zealand and Australia's Subantarctic Islands

Explore wildlife rich Macquarie Island as well as Campbell, Auckland Islands and the Snares. These UNESCO World Heritage Sites are home to a vast array of albatross, penguins, petrels, elephant seals and more.

22 Nov 2024, 18 Dec 2024

Unseen Fiordland and Stewart Island: Exploring New Zealand's Remote Backyard

Discover the time-forgot rawness of wildlife-rich Stewart Island/Rakiura and primordial majesty of Fiordland where clouds scud the ragged peaks of glacier-cleaved mountains streaked with waterfalls only accessible by expedition ship, and the rare opportunity to combine both of these remarkable destinations on one, 6-day voyage.

3 Jan 2025

Unseen Fiordland, Stewart Island and The Snares: Exploring New Zealand's Remote Backyard

Explore New Zealand's remote southern backyard, Discover the time-forgot rawness of wildlife-rich Stewart Island/Rakiura, Zodiac cruise the rocky, inhospitable coast of The Snares and experience the primordial majesty of Fiordland on this unforgettable 8-day expedition cruise.

1 Mar 2024

Our ship: Heritage Adventurer

Heritage Adventurer is a true pioneering expedition vessel of exceptional pedigree. Often referred to as the 'Grande Dame of Exploration Cruising' due to her celebrated history and refined design, she was purposebuilt for adventure in 1991 at Finland's Rauma shipyard and specifically designed for Polar exploration. Setting a peerless standard in authentic expedition travel, Heritage Adventurer (…

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30 Dec 2023
The recent "Galapagos of the Southern Ocean: New Zealand and Australia's Subantarctic Islands" expedition aboard Heritage Adventurer has concluded. T…READ MORE
26 Dec 2023
The recent "Unseen Fiordland and Stewart Island" expedition aboard Heritage Adventurer has concluded. The Species List for this voyage is now availab…READ MORE
20 Dec 2023
The recent "Beyond Fiordland" expedition aboard Heritage Adventurer has concluded. The Species List for this voyage is now available through the link…READ MORE
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