Key Facts

Stewart Island or Rakiura is the third-largest island of New Zealand and lies just 30 km south of the South Island. It has only close to 400 inhabitants, who almost all live in the settlement of Oban on the eastern side of the island. The island is at the heart of Maori mythology and while it is unknown when it was first settles, it is believed to be continously inhabited since the 13th century. While the island remains to be best known under its English name, which is a nod to William Stewart, who proved it was an island in 1809, it was officially renamed in Stewart Island/Rakiura in 1998. Residents of the island have gone further than that and repeatedly made mock promotions for independence, peaking in a mock independence declaration and selling passports in 1970 to raise funds for the local museum.

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Due to the tiny population, not much is known about sport on the island. The community center does claim that locals do mostly play basketball, volleyball and netball, but also offers tennis, badminton, squash and bowls.Other sporting facilities are not found on Rakiura and there is no evidence of any organised sport structure.

Community Centre Stadium (photo by

Uncharted Football x Stewart Island

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