Added by Rachel von Hahn
Katiki Point is the largest yellow-eyed penguin colony on the South Island. The lighthouse is only a short walk from parking lot.
From the car park, the trail leads in two directions. Following the track to your left will take you down to a penguin hide overlooking the coast. Watch the rocky shoreline carefully as many of the large boulders are actually napping fur seals. From the hide, you can observe penguins going out to sea or coming back ashore. The transition between graceful swimming and awkward rock-hopping is a must see. The trail to your right wraps around the backside of the lighthouse and is the best place to see the penguins up close as they nest in the grassy areas. Make sure to stay on the designated trail and never use flash when photographing the wildlife.
The best time to view penguins is either before 9:00 am when they are heading out to sea or after 3:00 pm when they are returning to their nests. Onsite volunteers and staff close the reserve when it gets dark (usually around 7:30). There is a donation box at the front – leave what you can to help them keep it all going!
- Warm clothing layers (weather can change quickly)
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