Field Trip | Levels: 3-8: Visiting Kapiti Island and Kapiti Marine Reserve is an opportunity for your students to experience a remote natural area.

Kapiti is one of New Zealand’s most valuable nature reserves, and it is the only large island sanctuary for birds between the Hauraki Gulf in the north and New Zealand’s southern outlying islands.

Kapiti Marine Reserve is 30 kilometres from Wellington city and is located between Paraparaumu and Waikanae beaches and Kapiti Island. To visit you will need a landing permit, a launch booking, and transport to and from the Kapiti Boating Club, Paraparaumu Beach.

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Species cards

Bats and invertebrates




About the resource

This resource has been developed to assist teachers in providing an exciting and interesting outdoor learning experience at Kapiti Island. A range of activities are suggested for students stimulating active learning based on what they encounter during their visit.

Visiting Kapiti Island and Kapiti Marine Reserve is an opportunity for your students to experience a remote natural area. During your visit you may see threatened species, study a marine protected area and hear about strange New Zealand plants and animals like the bat that walks with its wings or a fungus that eats caterpillars alive. And the island is steeped in history; it has been home to Maori, whalers, farmers and conservationists for over 1,000 years.

Get health and safety and pre-planning information, curriculum links, learning outcomes and teacher pre-visit, on site and post-visit lesson plans.

Learning areas

  • Science
  • Social sciences
  • Health and PE

Learning outcomes 

Primary level: This is a very large unit, divided into 5 parts (themes), each part with its own identified learning outcomes. Students will investigate:

  • threatened species
  • introduced pests
  • marine reserves
  • conservation management.

Secondary level: Students will:

  • investigate food chains and webs in an Island setting
  • plan an outdoor experience
  • gain knowledge about Island restoration and Pest eradication.

Links to curriculum 

  • Science: Living World: Ecology/ Evolution
  • Investigating about Science/ Participating and contributing/ Understanding about Science
  • Social Studies
  • Health & PE


  • Marine and coastal
  • Native plants
  • Native animals
  • Offshore island


Kapiti Wellington Office
Phone:   +64 4 470 8412
Address:   13b Wall Place
Porirua 5022
Postal Address:   PO Box 5086
Wellington 6140
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