Waiheke Island Tips
Tip on : Waiheke Island - 4 years ago
If you know the value of doing very little in a beautiful place, I highly recommend Waiheke island. It's off the off the coast of the North Island of New Zealand, outside of Auckland. You can go through downtown Auckland to the peer, hop on a little ferry, and sail off to Waiheke, as a few friends and I did. As we pulled into the docking cove we could see the most vividly green hillsides I've ever seen with all of these random abstract art sculptures along the cliffs. The water was aquamarine, truly aquamarine, I mean tropical-island-blue and clear enough to see all the little fish beneath its surface. It was sort of deserted looking when we got off, so we followed what appeared to be the main road in order to rent a car, some bikes, get bus tickets...we really didn't know. The sun there is golden and the sky seems so close, so walking along the little road and listening to the funky little bugs in the lush greenery surrounding you is an experience in itself. You sort of stumble upon a little visitors info center and can find your way to this tiny strip of town, no more than a block really, with little ice cream shops and a little market and that sort of thing. You can make your way down to the beach behind it. It's gorgeous. The most intensely vibrant colors, warm water, all sorts of natural wonders along the sand – beautiful abalone, 10-legged "super-star" fish, crabs, etc. There were three people MAX on this so called "main" beach. Incredible. If you make your way along the little coastline and you'll find a tire tied to an old oak right on the shore. I suggest climbing the tree, playing on the rope-tire swing, taking a photo-op before going on your merry way. There is an unmarked path through the greenery on the Cliffside that will put you atop the cove. It was like being in another world, and I guess it almost IS another world here in many ways...walking on this deserted little road, still surrounded by lush greenery, passing the occasional English-style cottage along the way. The road turns up into a huge vineyard that you can walk alongside and that extends as far as you could see up the hillside. It eventually turns into some brush and a VERY prickly little trail. The trail brings you into a little forest along the cliff with steps dug into the side, but so unstable that someone has tied ropes to all the trees so you can sort of rope your way down the cliff forest and find yourself on this completely secluded little beach. "Fossil beach." You can walk along the shore (so very, very beautiful) to the center of the cover, where the beach turns into cliff. Another photo-op. Beyond postcard worthy, really. The beach ends as it turns into cliff, but there is this mysterious staircase etched into the cliff on the other side of the cove that sort of beckons... but it's private property so you're better off enjoying the beach!