Paraparaumu Beach & Kapiti Island 

Paraparaumu Beach & Kapiti Island 

I decided that it was time to get an updated photo of Kapiti Island. So, while recently in the North Island, I detoured over to Raumati Beach before heading the short distance along to Paraparaumu. It was one of those hot summer days that I’m reliably informed is typical of the Kapiti Coast in late December and early January. So, after successfully dripping ice cream all over myself, I went in search of views of Kapiti Island from the beach.

Kapiti Island Wildlife Sanctuary

Kapiti Island Reserve – Buy 

During the 1840s, the whaling trade/industry around parts of New Zealand had started to fade away. Kapiti Island was one of these locations. At this time, much of the land on the Island was cleared for farming and sheep, goats, pigs, deer, cats, and dogs were introduced. For the next forty to fifty years, the island was farmed until around 1900 when the government purchased most of the island and developed it into a predator-free, bird sanctuary.

Kapiti Island

Kapiti Island – Buy 

Accessible only by specific ferry companies, Kapiti Island is a wonderful place to spend some time. These days, the predator-free Island is managed by the Department of Conservation however back in the mid-1830s, there were up to five whaling stations on the island. At the time, European traders and whalers were populating the coastlines and so local iwi provided them with land, pigs, potatoes, dressed flax and women in return for guns, tobacco and alcohol.

Paraparaumu Beach

Paraparaumu Beach – Buy 

My intention was to photograph the sun setting beyond Kapiti Island on the West Coast of the North Island. It was a lovely clear evening and to the north the coast stretched up all the way up to the coastal communities of Peka Peka, Ōtaki and Waitārere Beach. To the south, in the distance the coastline reached Raumati South, Paekākāriki before linking into Pukerua Bay.

Kapiti Island Shoreline

Kapiti Island Shoreline – Buy 

Some years ago, I had the pleasure to spend a day on Kapiti Island. Being a nature reserve, it lies 5 kilometers off the West Coast of the North Island, at Paraparaumu. Often visited by Maori, before europeans sailors arrived, at one point it was a busy whaling and sheep station that was then turned over to the government and made into a predator-free, bird sanctuary. For over 100 years it has been managed by the New Zealand Government in order to protect its flora and fauna.

Paraparaumu Beach & Kapiti Island

Paraparaumu Beach and Kapiti Island Buy 

Looking out from Paraparaumu Beach, across to Kapiti Island and the setting sun, I recalled recently reading that back in the 1830’s, whales migrated with their young through the channel between the Island and the shore. It would have been marvellous to see. I also recall reading that the channel provided a sheltered anchorage for ships and several shore-based whaling stations operated near-by, which explains why you don’t see whales in the area any more!