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Kingston (Norfolk Island)

Travel Guide Oceania Melanesia Norfolk Island Kingston

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Introduction

Kingston is the capital and largest settlement on Norfolk Island, an Australian South Pacific Territory. It is just a small village where all the formal administrative buildings, government buildings and Government House are located. Nowadays, the main commercial centre is Burnt Pine, but the cultural and historical centre remains in Kingston. It is built on the only flat, sea-level land available on Norfolk and several people living here have been relocated from the Pitcairn Islands, thus being descendants of the Bounty mutineers.

Neighbourhoods

The old town dating from 1788 occupies several winding irregular lanes at the head of Kingston Pier. The modern town, as laid out by the Royal Engineers during the 1830s, consists of a Roman-style grid plan. There are two long east west roads: Bay Street along the foreshore and Quality Row, the town's principal thoroughfare, along the foothills. These two boulevards are connected by short cross streets of Pier Street, Bounty Street and the former Bligh Street (now part of the drive to Government House).[5] Small stone bridges carry these streets across Watermill Creek. Four roads wind up country from the edges of the grid: Country Road, Middlegate Road, Rooty Hill Road and Driver Christian Road. All the buildings are located either in the old town or along Quality Row, with the exception of Government House which is located on a small knoll called Dove's Plot Hill. The middle and west of the plain forms the Kingston Common and Kingston Recreation Ground, with the golf links occupying the eastern end, and Kingston Cemetery in the northeast. This broad greensward with the Kingston swamp in its centre separates the two long boulevards.

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Sights and Activities

Kingston is in the centre of the Kingston and Arthurs Vale Historic Area, which was inscribed on the World Heritage List on 31 July 2010 as one of the group of eleven Australian Convict Sites.

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Weather

Kingston's climate is subtropical with an average rainfall of 1328 mm per year. Summer days range from 24 °C - 28 °C, with nights around 19 °C - 21 °C. In winter temperatures drop to around 19 °C during the day and 12 °C at night.

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Events and Festivals

Norfolk Island Country Music Festival

Fans say there’s a reason they keep coming back to Norfolk Island. The island is petite and the Country Music experience is up close and personal. Throughout the week there’s plenty of opportunity to mix and mingle with performers including a special platinum pass lunch with a performer hosting your table. The relaxed island vibe is nothing short of enchanting for fans and headliners alike.

Norfolk Island Ballroom Dancing Festival

The Norfolk Island Ballroom Dancing Committee and the Norfolk Island Travel Centre sponsor Ballroom Dancing instructors to travel to this small island in the middle of the South Pacific. Visitors travel far and wide from Australia and New Zealand to learn the latest dances from this year’s winning England Inventive Sequence Dances, no less. As serious as this all sounds the festival is strictly social. Dancers meet on Norfolk Island to enjoy a week of dancing and a holiday on beautiful Norfolk Island. Regular attendees catch up over a waltz and first time dancers are warmly welcomed.

Norfolk Island Food Festival

Norfolk Island is very fortunate in the fact that it doesn't take very long for our produce to leave the paddock and reach our plate! Come & experience the delights of fresh seasonal fruits & vegetables, fresh fish from our surrounding ocean and tasty local beef & pork. The Norfolk Island Food Festival - "Taste Norfolk Island" is set to showcase our talented local chefs and some of the freshest produce you are likely to experience. Savour the flavours from numerous food exhibits offering mouthwatering Norfolk Island creations. Mingle with the locals in the relaxed island atmosphere, enjoy live entertainment & cooking demonstrations.

Bounty Day

Anniversary (Bounty) Day on the 8th of June 2016 will mark the 160th anniversary of the arrival of the Pitcairn Islanders to Norfolk Island. The Pitcairners were of course, the descendants of the infamous English sailors of mutiny on the Bounty fame and the Tahitian women who, under their leader Fletcher Christian began a new life on isolated Pitcairn Island. After outgrowing tiny Pitcairn the community, made up of eight family groupings, relocated to Norfolk Island where their descendants live today. This is now their ‘National’ day and always a highlight for visitors who are always welcomed to take part. It offers a wonderful opportunity to absorb the Norf’k culture, embodied through the local language (a mix of Tahitian and old English), food, crafts and customs.

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Getting There

By Plane

Norfolk Island Airport (IATA: NLK, ICAO: YSNF) is the only airport on Norfolk Island. Air New Zealand flies here several times a week from Auckland, Brisbane and Sydney.

A $30 departure fee is payable at the airport on day of departure.

Travel times are:

  • Sydney - Norfolk Island : 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Brisbane - Norfolk Island : 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Auckland - Norfolk Island : 1 hours 45 minutes
  • Newcastle - Norfolk Island : 2 hours 30 minutes

By Boat

There is no regular passenger service to Norfolk Island by sea. Cruise ships occasionally call at Norfolk Island. The local shipping agent, Transam Argosy, lists details of cruise ships calling at Norfolk Island. All passengers are ferried ashore using either the Ships Tenders or Zodiac inflatables – weather permitting.

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Getting Around

There is no public transport system on Norfolk Island. While it is possible to walk the length and breadth of it, most visitors hire a car. A taxi service has begun operation on the island. However, the viability of such a service on a small island is questionable.

It costs about A$45 a day to hire a car, A$20 a day for a scooter and A$15 a day for a bicycle.

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Keep Connected

Internet

There are 2 internet cafés in Taylors Road and wireless broadband is now available across large portions of the island.

Phone

See also International Telephone Calls

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Contributors

as well as Hien (4%)

Kingston (Norfolk Island) Travel Helpers

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This is version 5. Last edited at 8:10 on May 10, 17 by Utrecht. 3 articles link to this page.

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