Discover some of Auckland's amazing wineries and beaches on Waiheke Island! While you can enjoy this paradise in a day trip, a long weekend is even better.

With ferries leaving Auckland’s downtown every 45 minutes or an hour, the 35-minute scenic journey is quick and easy! From white-sand beaches to world-class wineries, you are spoiled for choice on this island paradise. It is easy to spend a few days here because there is so much to do and see! But if you are pressed for time, we have done the research and compiled a list of some epic places to eat and drink, as well as things to see and do while you are there.

Here is how to make the most of the island’s best attractions in 24 hours

10am - Departure from downtown Auckland

Board a ferry from downtown Auckland and begin your journey with breath-taking views of the Hauraki Gulf. You will cruise past Auckland's stunning coastline and beautiful islands as you journey towards Waiheke Island. 

10.45am – Coffee time 

Once you have arrived at Waiheke Island, your first stop is only five minutes’ walk from the ferry, Ahipao Café. The Ahipao cafe and garden bar is the perfect place to hang out before a long day of exploring the island. This friendly and welcoming café serves great pies, cakes and more. We recommend that you try the Ahipao Breakfast with eggs, bacon, sausages, baked beans, creamy mushrooms, crispy potatoes, sourdough toast, and coffee. You will be energised before heading to your next stop. 

Catch the bus 

Catch the bus for about five minutes to your second stop on the itinerary, Oneroa Village and Beach. 

Explore Oneroa Village and do some shopping 

Explore the picturesque Oneroa Beach, along with numerous cafes, bars, restaurants, and art galleries on the main street, as well as plenty of small shops where you can pick up a Waiheke souvenir. Then get ready to head to the beach and get some sand between your toes. The main beach beneath the village is lovely, with a long stretch of white sand. Make sure to also check out Little Oneroa Beach, located a little further east. 


Feeling a bit hungry? It is time to stop for lunch. Check out The Oyster Inn, a landmark eatery in Oneroa village by award-winning chef and owner Josh Emett. Expect a seafood-focused menu with oysters, cured or raw fish dishes, and crowd favourites such as fish and chips and the Iconic Eats - Kahawai Mousse. Book a table on the sunny veranda and enjoy your lunch as you take in the gorgeous views across the bay. If you are lucky, you might be able to spot a few dolphins. 

1pm - Scenic walk 

There are a wide range of walks available on Waiheke Island, from short and easy to longer and more difficult. You can begin anywhere, end anywhere, and travel in any direction. Check out the Te Ara Hura walking track network to explore the coastline, native bush, and historic sites. This collection of walks is ideal for exploring the island and discovering its natural beauty. 

2pm - An afternoon of wine tasting  

After exploring Waiheke’s coastline by foot, it is time to take a break and do some wine degustation. You cannot be on Waiheke Island without going to one of the numerous vineyards scattered all around the island. Just remember to always book in advance! 

Head to Casita Miro in Onetangi village and add some Catalan flavours to your Waiheke journey. You will be amazed not only by the delicious food featuring freshly baked focaccia, dips, cheeses, and charcuterie, but also by the incredible views looking out over the vines, the village, and the sea. 

For aromas of the south of France, head to Stonyridge Vineyard. Using the French style of winemaking, Stonyridge focuses on Bordeaux-style Cabernet-dominant red blends. The venue is gorgeous! It is nestled in a shimmering valley of olive trees and colourful vines. The tasting lounge is open daily from 11:30am for wine tastings and nibbles. 

If you have enough time, make sure to add a few of the more off-the-beaten-path wineries to your itinerary such as Tantalus Estate, Stonyridge Vineyard, Wild Estate or the family-friendly Man O’ War. If beers and whisky are more your thing, check out The Heke Kitchen, Brewery & Distillery. You won’t regret it! 

5pm - Dinner with a view 

After tasting the delicious wines, it is time to enjoy dinner with a view. Head to Batch Winery to enjoy astounding views while tasting wine from the barrel before its bottled. It makes it a perfect place to have dinner and end your trip with some scenic fine dining. If you are a meat lover, try a dish from the unique Josper charcoal grill. Expect juiciness and smoky flavours – delicious! 

7pm - Time to relax at your hotel 

For a five-star experience, book a suite at the chic and luxurious The Boatshed. Located just above the sun-drenched bay and white sandy beaches of Oneroa, each suite has panoramic ocean views. Relax with a glass of wine, read a book, enjoy a nice walk on the beach or make the most of the in-suite spa treatments available. There are plenty of other accommodations on the island. Click here to see more. 

Getting around 

The Hop-On Hop-Off Explorer Bus tour 

One of the easiest ways to get around Waiheke Island is with the Hop-On Hop-Off Explorer Bus tour. The bus stops at over 16 destinations, including popular vineyards, beaches, and seaside villages full of galleries, shops, and cafes. It gives you the freedom to visit at your own pace. 

Waiheke Island car rental 

If you want the freedom of having your own wheels on Waiheke but do not have your own car, you can easily rent one on the island. 

Hop in a taxi 

Taxis, while not the most cost-effective mode of transportation, do provide flexibility. Split the cost if you are travelling with friends.