On our first full day in Auckland last December we decided to take a day trip to Waiheke Island and follow the coastal path around the north of the island from Matiatia wharf to Oneroa Beach.
The island is just a 40 minute ferry trip from Auckland City.
The walk begins directly from Matiatia wharf where the gnarled trees and windswept grasses make an immediate impression beside the yachts bobbing in the bay.
It was the beginning of summer in New Zealand and we were extremely lucky with the weather. Clear skies provided stunning views out over the Hauraki Gulf.
For the privileged few there, the island is home to some of the most stunning properties overlooking the sea on the rolling green hills.
At Owhanake Bay we needed to take a detour down Korora Road since the Island Bay track was closed due to storm damage. This cuts about 40 mins off the walk.
Approaching Oneroa Beach, we passed a garden full of beautiful Agapanthus (African Lily).
While the water was pretty chilly, I wanted to have my first swim in the southern hemisphere so braved the shallows for about 30 minutes. Afterwards, we wandered up to Ocean View Road and found a cafe to have a late lunch.
From the beach, you can walk all the way back to the ferry port via Atawhai Whenua Reserve but we opted to take the bus since we were still feeling tired after the long flight.
The walk takes 2-3 hours to complete and a map can be found on the Auckland Council website.