One of the most isolated and remote holiday homes in New Zealand has been placed on the market for sale.
The two-bedroom cottage on Stewart Island is accessible by a two-hour hike or 15-minute water-taxi ride from Half Moon Bay which has Stewart Island’s only town, Oban.
Only two other dwellings on the opposite side of the Paterson Inlet are further south on Stewart Island.
The rustic cottage, situated on the Kidney Fern arm of the Paterson Inlet, has no electricity, no cellphone coverage, and no running water. Heat for cooking and warmth is generated from a coal range, holiday-makers must take in their own gas bottles, the toilet is an eco’-friendly long-drop, and communication with the outside world can only be made with a battery-powered hand-held marine radio.
Sitting on some 221 hectares of waterfront land and with unobstructed dual beach views from both the front and back porch, the crib shares boundaries with the Southern Ocean and Rakiura National Park – New Zealand’s southernmost wilderness reserve.
The cottage was bought by a Stewart Island fisherman and guest house operator in 1970 as a holiday home to get away from the ‘hustle and bustle’ of Oban…. with its population of approximately 270 people at that time.
Over the ensuing decade, weekends and summers were spent at the secluded cottage,
where the children fished for blue cod off the beach, and picked mussels off the rocks at the end of the front lawn. Holidays there also included cutting fire wood for the BBQ, fishing, stargazing and tramping up into the national park along the “Sludgy Wudgy” track,
The family moved off the island in 1981 but regularly returned return to Kidney Fern for its tranquillity and solitude.
The property is now being marketed for sale by negotiation through Bayleys Real Estate. Salesperson Mike Peterson said Kidney Fern was the southern-most property listing the agency had ever signed up.
“Kidney Fern truly was, and is, the essence of what it was to be a Kiwi kid. And nothing much has changed since then. The cottage is in pretty much the same state it was when the family enjoyed it as children,” Mr Petersen said.