Waiheke Island, New Zealand
Volcanic Waiheke Island is located in the Hauraki Gulf and is the second-largest of this group of islands. With a major city like Auckland nearby, there are a number of tours available from Auckland to Waiheke Island as well as island tours. If you happen to find yourself in the Auckland area or anywhere nearby, a visit to this lovely island could very well become the highlight of your entire trip.
For wine connoisseurs, Waiheke has a number of outstanding vineyards including Mudbrick Vineyard, Stonyridge Vineyard, Man o War Vineyards and Top Knot Hill Vineyards. Should you be a beer drinker, then a visit to the Waiheke Island Brewery is a unique boutique brewery.
Nature and wildlife areas
The Waiheke Island is bursting with life and there is plenty to see and enjoy when you visit. The Stony Batter area is a lovely location to visit. It does take about 30 minutes to reach from the car park but it is worth every step. After all, you are here to walk around and take in some stunning fresh air, right? Along with the beautiful, natural scenery, you will also come across some interesting remnants of the local coast defences that date back to World War II.
If you are an animal, or particularly a bird fan, the Onetangi Forest and Bird Reserve is sure to tickle your fancy. The calm, quiet surroundings make for the ideal conditions for these birds to thrive. Take your time to walk and look around at these beautiful feathered creatures.
As unreal as it may seem, the Island actually does have a couple of museums for tourists to visit! The Whittaker's Musical Museum is known for its extra friendly and accommodating service as well as the interesting collection of musical instruments that they have on display. Even if you are not a musician; there is plenty to learn and enjoy at this fine speciality museum.
Connells Bay Sculpture Park is another top place for visitors to frequent. Visitors do need to make a booking in advance in order to avoid disappointment. You will be taken on a guided coastal walk for about 2½ hours. On your way, you will be able to enjoy a vast collection of large sculptures by local artists.
Along with these sites and activities, this island is also a great place to go when you want to escape and leave your daily stress behind. Take a trip and allow the sea air to fill your lungs and rejuvenate body and mind.