48 Hours on Waiheke Island

Escape to an Island paradise like no other in the Hauraki Gulf. With pristine beaches, boutique vineyards and wineries, Waiheke is calling your name. Head out on a luxurious tropical getaway on one of the world’s largest islands, just a 40-minute ferry ride from Auckland/Tāmaki Makaurau. With four Hertz rental car branches throughout Auckland, including Auckland Airport and Auckland Downtown, it’s easy to get to Waiheke and traverse the Island at your leisure. 

Waiheke Island Beginnings 

Once you’ve arrived in Auckland and picked up your Hertz rental car, it’s time to embark on your luxurious escape to Waiheke Island. Book a spot on the vehicle ferryand enjoy scenic views of the Hauraki Gulf on your cruise across the South Pacific Ocean. After a 35–40 minute ferry ride, you’ll arrive in Oneroa, Waiheke’s largest village. Relax into your holiday with breakfast at a boutique cafe. Bisou is a charming French-inspired eatery serving up delicious coffee, Parisian treats and pastries, located just five minutes from the ferry terminal. From here, elevate your afternoon with an outing to Waiheke’s finest winery and restaurant, Mudbrick. Nestled amongst picturesque rolling hills with the sparkling waters of the Huruhi Bay serving as a backdrop, indulge in a tour of the vineyards or guided wine tasting. Savour the flavours of Waiheke with a South Island tasting, limited-release tasting or flagship tasting, each offering a taste of Mudbrick’s bespoke varieties. Private vineyard tours are available, where you’ll learn about the wine-making process and wander the grounds for a relaxed and insightful Island experience. Remember to appoint a designated driver when drinking alcohol during your road trip. 

Life on Island Time 

Spend the afternoon at Oneroa Beach, a long stretch of white sand popular for swimming and leisure activities. Lean into the island life, let the beauty of the bay and laid-back atmosphere melt all your worries away. Whether you prefer to laze on the shore, go for a swim, or browse the gift stores and clothing boutiques in town, there are plenty of ways to make the most out of your time in Oneroa. Feeling adventurous? Embark on a guided sea kayaking tour to paddle along the tranquil waters and explore the scenic landscapes of Waiheke. Opt for a two-hour tour setting off from Matiatia Harbour, or request a customised trip to discover the Island at your own pace. After exploring the seas, head to Onetangi for a refined meal amongst luscious rolling hills and picturesque landscapes. Experience the taste of seasonal cuisine and expertly selected wine pairings with dinner at The Shed at Te Motu Vineyard. Choose from delicious offerings on the à la carte menu, like beetroot ceviche and crispy pulled lamb shoulder, or let the chef do the deciding for you with a specialty shared menu. Plus, guests can delight in snacks and Te Motu’s flagship wines with a cellar-door experience. 

Matiatia Harbour

Scenic Drive and Coastal Exploration 

Start your second day on the island with a scenic drive exploring hidden bays and coastal villages, and taking in the stunning views. From Onetangi, cruise south to reach Rocky Bay/Whakanewha Bay. If you’re seeking a spot of golf along the way, the Waiheke Golf Club is open to visitors and offers an idyllic 18-hole course. The Whakanewha area is a popular spot for kayaking, boating at high tide and bird watching, plus there are some tracks and paths to roam at your leisure. After a short stopover in Whakanewha, continue west along the coast to reach Palm Beach. Head here for a refreshing dip, or trail the Lookout Path for a blend of coastal views and woodland terrain.  

Please note: Some trails are closed to prevent the spread of Kauri Dieback disease. Check the trail map to confirm the condition of the trail before arriving. 

Lastly, head to Church Bay for a peaceful picnic. Pick up some charcuterie and local delicacies to prepare your basket, and find a cosy spot nestled between the shore and the forest to relax and let go, basking in Waiheke’s glorious atmosphere.  

Waiheke Gold Club

Unwind and Dine 

After discovering the island's southern shores and forested areas, relax with a visit to a luxurious day spa overlooking Owhanake Bay. Delamore Lodge offers lavish-style lodging on Waiheke, with day spa and dining services available to both in-house and external guests. From rejuvenating facials to soothing body therapies, indulge in a spa treatment to put your mind, body and soul at ease. Choose between the Deep Relaxation Massage, Hot Stone Massage or Absolute Hydration Facial, or if you’re holidaying with a loved one, consider the couple's experience which includes a massage, bottle of bubbles and platter to share. Complete the experience with a farewell dinner at Delamore’s on-site restaurant. Guests staying at the lodge can savour a three or five-course seasonal meal, while external visitors can enjoy the ‘Trust the Chef’ five-course menu, with wine pairings able to be added on. To end your luxury escape to Waiheke, head out to a beach or secluded spot, roll out a picnic blanket and lay back to enjoy the twinkling lights of the night sky above. 


A world full of pristine beaches, premier vineyards, and unparalleled luxury awaits just a short ferry ride from Auckland. This island paradise offers a unique blend of relaxation and adventure, inviting you to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and immerse yourself in its tranquil beauty. From exploring hidden bays to indulging in gourmet cuisine, your Waiheke adventure will leave you with unforgettable moments that will become cherished memories.