Freelance writer exploring Melbourne and beyond. If you enjoy the following article click on the Like button, Facebook it to your friends or subscribe. I'll update you with yummy and often free events. Like my photos? I instagram @redbagwilltravel
Many of us have been bemoaning the fact we can't travel overseas. We miss the immersion in a different culture, hearing a foreign language, eating international dishes and getting on a plane and just going. Well, here is one place you are allowed to go to and where you can enjoy all those experiences.
Norfolk Island is a Pacific Island and closer to New Caledonia and New Zealand than to Mainland Australia. While English is the spoken language Norf'k (also known as Norfuk) is the unique local language that fuses a type of 18th-century English and Tahitian.
But Norfolk is also an Australian territory so when Norfolk Island reopens its borders on July 10, 2020, you can go there and that means flying overseas! Or at least flying over the sea. It's about a 2.5-hour flight from either Sydney or Brisbane.
Norfolk Island is an absolutely stunning destination and if you think these images are just advertising... No, this is how beautiful it gets.
It is a historic location as well as being stunning.
Early comers to Norfolk Island were Polynesians and evidence of their civilisation continues to be found including adzes (a type of axe), hooks and jewellery. These intrepid travellers came by canoe as part of the great Polynesian voyages which also took them to Fiji and West Polynesia, including Tonga and Samoa. Amazingly they navigated by the stars.
Later Norfolk Island was a penal settlement so there's lots of great convict history here as well especially in the cluster of preserved historic buildings. Afterwards, Queen Victoria gave Norfolk Island to the descendants of the Bounty mutineers and their Tahitian wives who were running out of room on Pitcairn Island.
Not only has Polynesian culture played an important role in Norfolk Island's history but Tahitian culture is still evident today in the music, food, arts and language of the Pitcairn Islander descendants. And Norfolk's inhabitants continue to keep alive the romantic story of the intrepid Polynesian voyagers who bravely sought new lands in their ocean-going canoes.
In January 2021, Norfolk Island will host a Polynesian Fusion Festival to share their wonderful cultural heritage with you. It runs from the 23-30 of January.
The week-long packages to Norfolk Island start from $1229. These include flights from Sydney or Brisbane, meet and greet at the airport, accommodation transfers and 7 nights twin share accommodation and even your car hire for the entire time.
When I went to Norfolk Island in 2019, the return airfare alone was around $900 so this holiday, which includes accommodation and a rental car, is incredible value.
Enjoy Polynesian music, food and culture on a beautiful island holiday.
Lots of important entertainers have been booked to entertain you for the event including Gee'd Up, Annie Crummer and Pacific Elvis.
There is also a fun and engaging programme celebrating Polynesian fusion including:
Concerts encompassing performers from Norfolk Island, Pacific Islands & Aotearoa
Gospel at the stunning St Barnabas with its rich history and
William Morris designed stained glass windows.
Taste of Pacific Fusion Food - Hangi, Fish Fry (being an Island they have the great fish), Tahitian, Vanuatuan, and Fijian dishes to name a few!
Movies from Aotearoa & the Pacific
Grazing Table Fashion Fusion at the South Pacific Resort
Workshops – Traditional carving, weaving, language, cooking, ethnobotany (the traditional use of plants), lei making, poi and haka sessions (including a session for school-age children)and Tahitian and Fijian Hula (including a session for school-age children), Tahitian & Fijian Hula.* Polynesian Pathways Tour
Some sessions will be koha (complimentary) others paid
You will find the locals really getting behind this event. Polynesian Fusion Norfolk Island is a not for profit group of volunteers. A number are descendants from the famous Bounty mutineers. Some are Australians or New Zealanders who have made Norfolk Island their home because of the relaxed vibe and perfect temperatures - the sub-tropical climate is tempered by sea breezes, so it never gets too hot and rarely cold enough for a light jumper.
Lots of creatives have made Norfolk home over the years such as novelist Colleen McCullough (you can take tours of her eccentric home) and singer Helen Reddy.
Driving around the small island you won't even use a tank of petrol but will find many scenic nooks and crannies where you can be totally alone with nature. Note cows have free run of the Island and you can buy local produce on the side of the road, all of which is a really charming thing to do. There are some wonderful tours with locals. And because the bulk of the food is grown on this sub-tropical island the produce used in the restaurants is top-notch.