After breakfast we walked over to the ferry again and took a trip to Waiheke Island. Known for its boutique wines and awesome landscapes, we thought it would be a great way to spend Thanksgiving.
We met a man on the ferry who was traveling to the island because someone had called out sick at the bank he worked for, and they needed coverage. Originally from India, he lived in New Zealand for about 6 years. Lovely man. His children are grown, one living in Sydney. His love of this country was palpable. Through the ferry ride he kept pointing out the various islands, volcanoes and other sights. It was a nice experience.
We had a bus tour planned, which included lunch and three wineries. We met the tour guide, originally from Germany, living in New Zealand for 20 years and on Waiheke for 8. There was about 20 in our group.
Waiheke is the third largest island in New Zealand, after the north island and the South Island. It is quite mountainous, with narrow, windy roads. Not for those that get easily carsick.
A hike, some wine and lunch at the first winery was lovely. The weather was beautiful too.
A windy drive to the second winery, which is Spanish inspired, and the owner likes to make mosaics and appears to be inspired by Antonio Gaudi.
A unique tasting as they served each wine with a bite of something to show how wine works with food.
Over the ocean and through the woods to the third winery, which took us on a bit of a hike, to, seemingly, the top of the world.
A ferry ride back to town, a nice meal at the tapas place and off to pack as tomorrow we leave for home.