Where to Go near Auckland in 2019
james palmer: "Fantastic stay in a beautiful, peaceful and private location. Highly recommended."
Hayley Mallen: "We recently stayed at the Circular Bay Retreat and despite the gloomy weather, it was a stunning place to stay. The remoteness and beautiful views out to the bay were a standout, and it was a treat to sit in the hot spa in the freezing rain. We traveled with our toddler who enjoyed the assortment of kids games, and Netflix (and going up and down the stairs repeatedly). We will have to return in the warmer months next time so we can fully appreciate the place, take the kayaks out into the bay, and visit a wider selection of the local wineries as many were closed mid-week for the off-season. The island has experienced weeks of rain making the steep and winding track in very slippery so would certainly agree with the property manager's advice to use a 4WD."
Claudia Craig: "This is a very special property -secluded, picturesque and completely private. The cottage is perched between two hills and looks out to a magical cove so you feel at home simply lying around enjoying the view. There are exquisite vistas from the living room, master bedroom, extensive decking and lawns. The BBQ was great for dinner and S'mores, and the jacuzzi tub a big hit with both adults and kids alike. We all used the kayak (it is only a single berth so we had to take turns) and the water was calm and clear. The grey sand is very rocky and uncomfortable without shoes, so not so good for swimming near the shore. It was summer when we were there (about 25 degrees Celsius) and the interior of the house was quite warm. We had to open windows to let the outside cooler air in but there were a lot of bugs. There is an air conditioner but it didn't reach the upstairs bedrooms. My children used the fan. The bathroom is small but manageable and there were plenty of towels. The road in is unsealed for about 4km and extremely steep in parts. It is worth taking the 4WD advice and stocking up on food supplies as there is no supermarket within half an hour, and you don't feel like popping out into town because of the unsealed road driving. Nearby wineries were open for lunch, not dinner midweek, so we self-catered each night. I believe they are open for dinner on the weekends but worth checking before you come. Waiheke Horse Tours is very close (about ten minutes) and we did a spectacular trail ride down to the beach then up to the high points where the views were stunning. In summary, the few shortcomings of this property are far exceeded by its exceptionally beautiful location, exclusivity, and the sense of sheer wonder you feel when waking to the sparkling cove and green hills."Show More