31 May 2009

31.3.09 A Day on Waiheke Island

Just 35 minutes from Auckland by ferry takes you to Waiheke Island. Situated in the Hauraki Gulf, Waiheke boasts a subtropical climate and a beautiful 100 km coastline.

My family used to holiday regularly on Waiheke when I was growing up, it was a very popular destination. In those days it would take us 3 hours on the old 'Baroona' ferry and more often than not at least one of us three girls would be throwing up by the time we arrived! There was only one shop where we were, in Surfdale, where you could only get fresh milk & bread (delivered daily from the mainland) & other basics and as we were always there for Christmas Day I hate to think how my parents managed to get us, food for two weeks, our clothes and all our xmas presents there in one piece! There were no cars & very few buses either so we walked everywhere.

Dennis has lived in NZ since 1964 but has never been there so today was the day, especially as all public transport is now free for us pensioners, including the ferry! Up early, pack our picnic lunch, catch the train into the city & onto the ferry that is now only a 35 min trip.


Inside the Britomart Railway terminal in the city.


Don't you love people that walk in front of you!


Outside the station on the way to the ferry we stopped to look at this magnificent bronze sculpture of a Maori Warrior made by Molly MacAlister in 1964.


The old Ferry Building built on reclaimed land in the Edwardian Baroque style in 1912 is now a Category 1 Historic Place. It was extensively restored in 1986. Taken from the roof of the ferry by Dennis.


The waterfront as we pull out from the wharf (Dennis again).akl-waiheke-ferry_jpg_2092326501

I forgot to take a photo of the ferry we went on so I found this on the net.


Just coming into Matiatia wharf. From there we caught the bus to Onetangi Beach.


The local mothers' walking club at Onetangi.


Onetangi Beach on a Tuesday morning in March. It's the most beautiful long sandy beach, we walked along to the end and back to catch the next bus to Surfdale.


I wanted to have a look around at the place I stayed at over 50 years ago, it's changed beyond recognition, no shop, no wharf where the ferry first stopped, very nostalgic though.


This is where the Surfdale wharf used to be, now there's absolutely no sign that it was ever there! Just around the corner is Blackpool beach.


We stopped to have lunch on Surfdale beach, not the most exciting beach in the world but we kids had such fun here.


Joined by a few ever hopeful seagulls!


The water that day was like glass.


I can't be exactly sure but I think this might be the house we used to stay in, but then again maybe not.


Back to the bus stop to catch the bus onto the main shopping centre at Oneroa Beach.


And here it comes.


Toi Tois at Oneroa. Yes that's a sailing shop anchored in the bay.


This is as close as we got to the beach, after walking around the shops we didn't have time to get down there before the bus was due again. Back on to the ferry where we had nice hot mochaccinos on our way home.


Going past the container wharves with the city behind them. We didn't see any sun that day although it was a lovely warm day it was overcast all day. The city looks sort of smoggy doesn't it.


What a contrast in the colouring of these two photos.


A different view of the Ferry Buildings.


Auckland Waterfront Serviced Apartments built to look like a cruise ship on Prince's Wharf where all the cruise ships berth.


And so back to the railway station and home. This is the facade of the old Auckland Post Office, step inside the doors and you're in the Britomart Railway Station. You will find a photo of the post office when the trams were still running here.

Next stop the cemetery......

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