PLANNING YOUR TRIP TO THE PITCAIRN ISLANDS
IMPORTANT LEGAL INFORMATION ABOUT TRAVELLING TO AND STAYING ON PITCAIRN ISLAND
The remoteness of Pitcairn Island, as well as its unique history and dramatic landscape, is part of the Island’s attraction as an adventure destination. But these features also present certain risks. Please read the following information carefully.
Pitcairn is one of the most isolated Islands in the world. When you travel on board the Pitcairn Government’s dedicated Passenger/Shipping vessel, ‘MV Claymore II’, you will be at sea for at least two nights before arriving at Pitcairn Island. There is no airport on the Island, so when on the Island you will be at least two days sail from the nearest airport – back in the Gambier Islands (where you will have boarded the Claymore II).
Although the Island has a functioning Medical Centre and qualified resident doctor, medical assistance is necessarily limited by the Island’s isolation. The Island itself is steep and rugged in parts.
All visitors to Pitcairn Island must therefore be aware of the following:
- MEDICAL INSURANCE IS MANDATORY
TRAVEL TO PITCAIRN IS AT YOUR OWN RISK
Visitors who intend travelling on the Pitcairn Islands Government’s Passenger/Shipping Vessel, the ‘Claymore II’, can view the Terms and Conditions of Travel at: www.pitcairn.pn or contact email@example.com. Passengers travelling on other vessels are advised to check the Travel Terms & Conditions of their carrier.
STAYING ON PITCAIRN IS AT YOUR OWN RISK
By s 22 of the Immigration Ordinance (Laws of Pitcairn, ch 12), liability on the part of the United Kingdom Crown, the Pitcairn Islands Government and officials (and other persons performing statutory functions) is excluded for personal injury or death. Section 22 reads as follows:
PART X—GENERAL PROVISIONS
Exclusion of Official Liability
22.—(1) Where any person visiting the Islands, whether pursuant to any permit or clearance issued under this ordinance or not, sustains any damage to or loss of property or suffers personal injury or death by accident, there shall be no liability in law for compensation or damages arising directly or indirectly out of such damage, loss, injury or death, notwithstanding any rule of law or any enactment to the contrary, on the part of the Crown, the Governor, the Island Council or any member or members thereof, or any person by virtue of any statutory function or duty, or any other person acting in any function or capacity as servant, employee, agent or delegate of the Crown, the Governor or the Island Council.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the act of visiting the Islands shall be deemed to commence, if landing by means of a Pitcairn boat, at the moment of boarding it from another vessel or, if landing by other means, at the moment of stepping ashore; and to end, if departing by means of a Pitcairn boat, at the moment of leaving it to board another vessel or, if departing by other means, at the moment of leaving the shore.
OTHER THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
- TRAVEL INSURANCE is also strongly advised. Bad weather and sea conditions can unexpectedly lengthen travelling time and there are generally only two flights per week from Mangareva (in the Gambier Islands, French Polynesia) to Tahiti.
- BEING PHYSICALLY FIT & AWARE OF YOUR LIMITATIONS is important when considering Pitcairn as a travel destination. If you have recently experienced injury or illness please ensure your doctor has given you medical clearance before you make your travel plans.
- IF YOU TAKE REGULAR MEDICATION, we strongly advise that you seek extra supplies from your doctor prior to travelling.
- If you are prone to SEA SICKNESS please ensure you travel with appropriate medication.
- As with most Islands throughout the Pacific, MOSQUITO REPELLANT is strongly advised.
- Pitcairn’s night skies are incredibly beautiful. Remember to BRING A TORCH if you enjoy an evening walk and a bit of star gazing.
CLOTHING & FOOTWARE
Clothing should be comfortable and light weight. Visitors are advised to bring trousers, a warm jumper and light rain coat for wet weather and cooler winter nights. Hats, sun glasses and sun-block are essential in the summer months. You will need COMFORTABLE, STRONG WALKING SHOES when exploring Pitcairn Island. Many roads and walkways to the island’s historic and natural attractions are steep and gravelly - all care must be taken regardless of weather conditions.
BE MINDFUL & ASK FOR HELP Most Pitcairn households will have a sturdy handmade Pitcairn walking stick available – don’t be afraid to ask for one - they work wonders , going both up and down hill – and make a wonderful keep sake.
There are many remarkable, must see, natural attractions on Pitcairn Island. Some are not easily accessible. It is strongly recommended that you USE LOCAL GUIDES when visiting these sites and that you are prepared and able to deal with Pitcairn’s sometimes rugged environment. Be sure to always let your hosts know where you are going when you explore the island independently. In hot weather always carry drinking water.
ON-ISLAND TRANSFERS AND TRANSPORTATION
All Pitcairn Accommodation hosts welcome their guests at the Bounty Bay Landing on arrival providing free transfers, generally via 4 wheel Quad Bikes. Quad Bikes are the primary means of transportation on the island. While islanders are skilled riders in all types of weather and road conditions, quads bikes are not designed to carry passengers and accidents can occur. Visitors should be aware that travelling on quad bikes is undertaken at the passenger’s own risk. Local safety standards require that no more than 2 passengers per vehicle may be carried at any one time.
PASSPORT STAMP/LANDING FEE
All visitor arrivals must pay US$35.00 landing fee, payable to the Pitcairn Island Office, prior to arrival or to the Pitcairn Police and Immigration Officer on arrival.
Local voltage is 230-240Volts. For electrical travel adaptors - Pitcairn’s plug / socket system is the Australia / New Zealand standard.
CLIMATE Pitcairn’s average summer temperature ranges from 20-30 degrees centigrade. In winter it can drop as low as 17 degrees centigrade. The humidity ranges from 60-100% all year round. Winter temperatures can be felt from May to October. Roads and walkways can become very muddy and slippery in the winter months. During summer the island can become tinder dry and very dusty. There is a HIGH FIRE RISK in dry weather. All care must be taken when extinguishing cigarettes. Pitcairn’s fresh water catchment is dependent on rainfall. In dry weather consideration must be given to water conservation.
You do not have to apply for a visitor visa if your intended stay on island is less than 14 days. If you wish to apply for a Long Term Visitor Visa (up to 6 months) or a Business Visa please go to www.pitcairn.pn or contact firstname.lastname@example.org for an application form.
A successful Seventh-day Adventist mission in the 1890s was important in shaping early Pitcairn society. In more recent years, church attendance has declined but most Pitcairners still attend church on special occasions and visitors are always welcome. Dress code is tidy casual. The church, which was built in 1954, is run by the Church board and resident Pastor, who usually serves a two-year term. The Sabbath School meets at 9.30am on Saturday mornings and is followed by the main service (Divine Service) an hour later. On. The Sabbath (Saturday) is observed as a day of rest and as a mark of respect for observant Adventists.
CURRENCY All Pitcairn Island Accommodation costs and local souvenirs are priced in US Dollars. You can access cash on Credit Cards and have money exchanged at the Government Treasury Office, located in the town square. Post Office and General Store purchases are priced in New Zealand Dollars.
Pulau School provides pre-school and primary education for Pitcairn’s children, based on the New Zealand syllabus. Qualified, registered, New Zealand teachers are appointed by the Pitcairn Island Government for a 2 year term. Although guests are always given a friendly welcome, visits during school hours are not permitted without the prior consent of the teacher. A visit can be arranged on request.
GOVERNMENT CHARTERED PASSENGER TRAVEL - TERMS & CONDITIONS
VISITOR APPLICATIONS FOR CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF 16 yrs
There are currently restrictions in place regarding visits and settlement by children under 16 years of age. If you wish to apply to visit Pitcairn, on behalf of a child, please contact the Deputy Governor’s Office at Kevin.email@example.com before submitting any application.