Luxury Holidays, Accommodation and Experiences

Auckland and Waiheke Island

  • Auckland City towards Rangitoto Island


A city of over 1.4 million, Auckland is still characterised by it's seaside position in the Hauraki Gulf, with sheltered sailing waters, beaches and islands never far away. If coming from overseas you will most likely enter and depart New Zealand from Auckland International Airport. Spend time on the waterfront, exploring the marinas, quays and restaurants near Wynyard and the Ferry Terminal and visiting the excellent Auckland Maritime Museum. Auckland was founded in 1840 and the harbour frontage still has some grand Victorian buildings in amongst the modern developments of hotels and cafes. Behind the Britomart Transport Centre is a well designed little retail and restaurant zone with several of New Zealand's top fashion designers displayed and some good breakfast cafes. Away from the water are the retail and restaurant hubs of Parnell, Newmarket and Ponsonby. Auckland is also the world's largest polynesian city and a good place to begin your experience of Maori and Polynesian culture, art and history. Take a guided tour, visit the Auckland museum or simply enjoy the atmosphere of this pacific city.

Cuisine Magazine's Good Food Guide - a useful guide to eating your way around Auckland (and New Zealand)
Auckland Art Gallery - Toi O Tamaki
Auckland Museum, artifacts and collections but also daily cultural performances and Maori tours
Auckland Maritime Museum
Tiritiri Matangi - day trip to an island bird sanctuary just a short ferry ride from Auckland city centre

Waiheke Island

Waiheke Island is just 30-40 minutes away from the city centre by ferry, a treasure trove of good food and wine, pretty beaches and relaxing walks. It is quite possible to base yourself on Waiheke and explore the city from there, as many locals do. Ananda Tours do an excellent job of guiding you around the island and showing you the best wineries, fascinating artists, galleries and boutique olive groves. The island also has some easy short coastal walks. We highly recommend Mudbrick winery for views, ambience and lunch - but book ahead. You can take a car onto the island by ferry.

Driving Times

Auckland-Waihiki Island: 40 mins-1 hour by ferry
Auckland-Kerikeri: 3 hours
Auckland-Coromandel: 1 hour 40 mins
Auckland-Rotorua: 2 hours 45 mins
Auckland-Taupo: 3 hours 15 mins

Fullers Ferrys to Waiheke and other Hauraki islands
Sealink Car Ferry from Half-Moon Bay to Waiheke and  other Hauraki Gulf islands
Small planes or helicopters to Waiheke and other Hauraki Gulf islands from Auckland airport.

Auckland & Waiheke Island