New Zealand's indigenous people, the Maori, called this land "Tamaki Makau Rau", a maiden with 100 lovers. It was a place desired by many and fought over for its riches, including its forested hills, productive volcanic soils and harbours full of seafood. The first sailors to settle here were the Maori, and in later years migrants from the Pacific Islands have contributed to the Polynesian population. From the first Maori waka (canoes) and colonial ships, Auckland has attracted immigrants from far and wide. Today, Auckland is the world's largest Polynesian city and is a cultural melting pot with more than 1 million people - one quarter of New Zealand's population.
Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf is home to a multitude of islands, each with its own distinctive character. A short 35-minute ferry ride from Auckland is Waiheke Island, with its sandy beaches, markets, artists and winemakers. Here you will find the enchanting lodge The Boatshed with its design-savvy yet casual vibe.
Great Barrier Island
Located at the edge of the Hauraki Gulf, Great Barrier Island is a remote, tranquil and untouched paradise 90km north east of central Auckland. Great Barrier Island is one of the most unspoilt places you'll ever find, promising a range of nature-related experiences. There are a variety of walking tracks to discover the stunning terrain, or try fishing, kayaking, boating, horse riding, golf or bird watching. Earthsong Lodge is located in this stunning paradise.
Renowned worldwide for its natural beauty, misty rainforests and pristine golden beaches, the Coromandel peninsula is located Southeast of Auckland. It is blessed with hundreds of natural hideaways, making it an ideal place to slow down, relax and unwind. The town of Thames, known as the 'Gateway to the Coromandel', has a wealth of boutique shops, a historic main street and Gold Museum. The West-coast of the Coromandel is rugged and in the summer it displays the famous red blooming New Zealand Christmas Trees “Pohutukawa”. The East of the Coromandel Peninsula seduces travellers with its white sand beaches and fine deep-sea fishing. Due east of Thames is Bushland Park Lodge.