Great Barrier Island / Aotea is home to an isolated rural community spread across a rugged, bush covered main island and several offshore islands. Lying 88km north east of Auckland Central City, the Island protects the waters of the inner Hauraki Gulf. The eastern coast is wild with long wave swept sand beaches, and towering cliffs. The western coast has several deep harbours and many mangrove coves and inlets.
Year-round residents’ number about 1200, while tourist / bach owner / boaties numbers over a busy summer season can peak at 15,000 on any one day.
The island has no reticulated power or sewerage. There is no bank or ATM. There is no High School, Early Child Care facility, Cottage Hospital, Rest Home, medical laboratory, physiotherapist, or undertaker.
Transport to and from the mainland is expensive and weather dependent. There is no public transport on the island and freight charges increase costs across all categories of consumables; particularly petrol / diesel, and food / cooking gas.