Our journey through the Glenfern Sanctuary unveiled mesmerizing sights at Sunset Rock and Kauri Tree Crown Lookout. The sanctuary not only treated us to stunning vistas of the whenua (land) but also provided a symphony of natural sounds from cicadas and an array of native and endemic bird species. Among these were the Kōtare (kingfisher), Kereru (New Zealand wood pigeon), brown teal, Pīwakawaka (fantail), Tui and many more, creating a rich auditory experience.

Docking adjacent to Tiritiri Mātangi, our expedition was welcomed by knowledgeable tour guides. Two hikes awaited us: the shorter Wattle Track and the more extensive Kawerau Track. Both routes showcased exquisite landscapes and introduced us to New Zealand’s diverse wildlife, including the Ruru (morepork), Titipounaumu (rifleman), male and female Hihi (stitchbird), and a sighting of the Tuatara, New Zealand’s largest reptile.

The day’s expedition across Aotea (Great Barrier Island) and Tiritiri Mātangi Island provided an immersive experience into the natural wonders, biodiversity, and captivating landscapes of New Zealand. Each moment, from sunrise to sunset, offered a tapestry of unforgettable memories and discoveries for all expedition participants.