This New Year me and my friends headed to Waiheke Island for a week. We hired a lovely house and embarked on a holiday filled with plenty of sun, beach, wine and laughs.
Waiheke Island is situated in the Hauraki Gulf and is about 18km or an hours ferry ride from Auckland.
The house we hired was in an area called Onetangi, which has a beautiful beach but is quite far away from the main centre of the island, Oneroa, where all the shops, cafes and supermarkets are located. Since the island is too large to navigate on foot we took two cars over to help transport us around.
Onetangi has one of the most spectacular beaches on the entire Island.
From our place you could drive to the beach within minutes, but we often chose to walk through a bush track which took around 15 minutes. It is the only beach on Waiheke where you can sit at a cafe with a glass of wine right on the waterfront. Dining options include 4th Avenue and Charlie Farlie’s. Both places have a pub stigma but are deceptively delicious.
We spent a lot of our time down at the beach. We played a swedish game called Kubb, sunbathed, napped and went swimming. Being North facing, the water at Onetangi was warm and also quite calm so it was a great place to spend the day in and around the water.
One day we went for lunch at Cable Bay Vineyard.
Cable Bay is an award winning winery and restaurant situated on the west coast of Waiheke Island.
The day we visited was absolutely stunning, and the vineyard has the most spectacular panoramic views looking back toward Auckland city. Though we were a little bit parched from the previous nights antics, we easily managed to sip on their delicious rosé and chardonnay and ate numerous sharing plates.
Later that night we barbequed at our house and watched the sun set.
For new years eve we went to High Life, an all day festival held at Stonyridge vineyard. The entertainment included DJs, dancers, live acts and performers. To top it off, at midnight there was a mesmerising fireworks display.
Unfortunately it rained for about an hour during the concert, but we managed to secure a table with an umbrella right in front of the main stage; we had the best view.
For me and my friends (who hadn’t been lost in the dash to get under shelter) we had a great time dancing the night away.
On the last day we went on a winery tour in a double decker bus to three local vineyards: Mudbrick, Kennedy Point and Goldie, we finished by having lunch at 4th Avenue. The sun was out, the wine was flowing and the views were spectacular. I would highly recommend this tour to a group even if you have just one day on the island.