The southern most point of New Zealand is located in Bluff. What is famous here? Bluff Oyster!. Bluff is one of the oldest European settlements in New Zealand. People come here to enjoy the scent of the sea and the rugged character of an oystering port. The port of Bluff is the gateway to Stewart Island, and home of Bluff oysters – reputed to be the best in the world. The oyster season runs from March to August, and in May the locals put on a lively festival to honour Ostrea chilensis (that’s Latin for Bluff oyster).
Located about 30km from Invercargill, the southernmost and westernmost city in New Zealand, and one of the southernmost cities in the world.It is the commercial centre of the Southland region. Great stop point for overnight and had your meal here in the city centre after the visit to Bluff.
We were came from Dunedin the day before and overnight in Kaka Point, near The Nuggets Point. Driving distance from Kaka Point was about 175km but we make few stop before Bluff, so it wasn’t tiring for us. Great road trip and we were enjoyed with the amazing view of the coastal road.
Stirling Point, with it’s famous signpost and walking tracks, is the beginning of State Highway 1 which traverses the length of the country to Cape Reinga in the far north (we visited earlier) – the journey really does begin here in Bluff!
Near to Stirling Point, you can stop by and relax at Oyster Cove. Many people had their lunch & dinner here. Recommended place to enjoy the amazing view on top of the hill overlooking the sea. During oyster season, tourist will flocking this place, offer fresh and delicious seafood menus.
Stirling Point Lighthouse
Not far from the Stirling Point, you can visit the lighthouse. It’s an old lighthouse built in 1912 set by the shore. You can see Tiwai Point from here.
Tiwai Point is an ancient quarries to modern factories. It has been the location of a wide variety of activities spanning hundreds of years. The first Maori settlers identified the argil-lite outcrops here to be an ideal source of stone for making adzes. Over the years the site grew in size to the point where archeologist described it as one of the biggest prehistoric adze-making “factories” in New Zealand.
From the mid 1800’s early European settlers used the area for sheep, cattle and wheat farming. However the stormy coastal weather made agriculture at Tiwai difficult.
The beaches of Tiwai had several small gold rushes from the 1860’s until the 1930’s. However the gold was never in any quantity to produce a permanent mining settlement.
In 1861 Tiwai Point became the site of quarantine ground for cattle coming from Victoria, Australia. In 1900 the area had a jetty and a quarantine hospital for migrants on a 46 hectare reserve. At the time, Australia was undergoing a plague scare. However, the plague was never to eventuate and Bluff locals used the jetty for picnic excursions and empty hospital wards as a dance hall. The only plague at Tiwai was rabbits in the mid 20th century.
In 1969 work began on the 215 acre aluminium smelter site at Tiwai. Opened in 1971 the Tiwai smelter has become one of the largest industrial facilities in New Zealand.
The Stirling lighthouse was established here in 1884. The tiny but historic lighthouse is a popular attraction. The building is an old signal station. Accessible by road, although parking is very limited but not many people visiting this place. This place is operated by Maritime New Zealand.
This Lighthouse was listed as 10 most photographic lighthouse in New Zealand.