Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Waiheke Day ..

Goodbye Auckland, see you tonight - this was me on Sunday, 8.00am, on the ferry to Waiheke Island. I had not been to this island before, heard heaps about it, but like lots of things, one of the many places in my lovely country that I had yet to visit . . . I always knew the Waitamata harbour and Hauraki gulf had many islands dotted around, but was amazed at how many there were. Even at that hour of the day, there were small boats out with fishermen  trying their luck - a cherry wave as we lumbered past.
It was a gorgeous day; slight breeze, blue sky and sparkly sea - after the stress with my job that has been happening lately, this was just what I needed - a total change of pace !

My first close-up sight of Waiheke, deep green water with native bush growing down to the shore line. I had taken my car over, so once we docked, I drove up the windy road to the cliff top, meandering my way to the little village of Oneroa.
My first stop was at the Steiner Kindy Fair where I gave a 30min introduction to a large crowd about TopBar hives. The fair had lots of interesting stalls - yummy food, beautiful handmade crafts, old fashioned games for kids with an amazing medieval court set up, complete with wooden horses, big ones, that ran along railway tracks so you could do the jousting thing ! Music playing and many happy people - a very nice vibe throughout ... my huge thanks to Christy,  www.islandgardening.com for inviting me over to her special island.
The view from the cafe in Oneroa where I had lunch. There were lots of little sail boats out and about.. Waiheke Is has many sheltered bays, really picturesque, even at this time of the year. The population is around 8000 with many more over the summer and weekends - lots of holiday places, big and small, with most of what you need on the island. It is a 45 min ferry ride from Auckland, just enough time to enjoy the sea air and views.
Oneroa Bay is where I ran my TopBar Hive workshop - this the view of the bay from the rather lovely winery/b&b owned by Christy and hubby, where we all sat out on the decking in the sunshine.
The land down to the water is a wetland, the surrounding hills are covered in manuka - Christy`s bees have a great choice ! With guests expected, we moved back to the Kindy and concluded the day sitting around the table, coffee and tea and chat.  
This is my lovely group of enthusiastic TopBar beekeepers to be ! I did so enjoy my day with all these lovely friendly folk, was invited back in the spring to check out their beezzz and you can be sure I will be there !

The car ferry on its way to Waiheke and my journey home . . . I was back in Hamilton in 2 hours, so really, it is not a long trip, a trip I will be making again, this time I think I will organize a `girls` weekend, there are so many other places to discover on Waiheke, stunning scenery, friendly locals - a small slice of NZ to treasure ..


Marilyn said...

I have a great love of Waiheke, always have. My first holiday on the island was when I was just six years old. It was just a bush clad island with little baches hidden away. When our children were little there more holidays, the island was growing and developing then, now it it very different but still so very lovely - and with a car it is still possible to 'get away from it all'. I loved seeing your photos.

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