Auckland Anniversary Weekend

Kicking off the New Year with an anniversary weekend?

Why not ditch the city for a long weekend in coastal bliss? Throw everything you need in the car, hit the road and head to greener pastures – we’re talking about Hawke’s Bay (of course). Don’t worry about the pre-trip research, leave the planning to us, we’ve put together the perfect itinerary for those wanting a romantic escape to Hawke’s Bay.

Check out our itineraries for some inspiration


 

Couples Getaway

Fieldtrip Private Tours
Explore the very best of Hawke’s Bay with your own private guide – Desa from Fieldtrip Private Tours. Get taken through a range of experiences including: award-winning wine, craft beer, locally roasted coffee, artisan food, art, history and hidden gems. Rely on Desa’s local knowledge as she tailors a day around what interests you most, and what you’d like to see so you can explore like a local, with a local! Book your private tour here.

Winery Dinner for two
Nothing says romance like dinner at a Hawke’s Bay winery, so treat you and your loved one to a fine-dining experience while you’re visiting. Thanks to award-winning chefs, the food is always in a league of its own, matching the top-shelf wines. Choose from coastal settings with ocean views or inland wineries among the vines for your evening out. Our ‘Winery Dining’ page makes it even easier to make your choice – peruse the options and book your seat at the table.

Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Market
One thing we know for certain: you can’t come up to Hawke’s Bay without visiting the Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Market – it’s the oldest and one of the biggest in the country. With the warmer months bringing those summer fruit and vegetables we love (think strawberries, cherries, blueberries, apricots and nectarines), the Farmers’ Market is bursting with fresh produce plucked straight from the source to the stall. Grab coffee and some breakfast or pick up fresh local produce, meats for the barbeques, gourmet goods for your platters, divine wines, beers and other non-alcoholic beverages, baked delights, sweet temptations, gifts and so many unique and interesting things to take home with you.

Farmers Market2

Hawke's Bay Farmers' Market

Te Mata Peak & The Redwoods
You’ll be able to spot mighty Te Mata Peak in Havelock North before you reach the carpark. Rising 399m above sea level, it’s the ultimate outdoor activity for a couple wanting to squeeze in fitness into their long weekend; New Year resolution and all that… There are a range of track options to choose from that best suit your fitness levels so you can take the flatter approach or challenge yourself with steep inclines. Trust us, the views are worth the climb! The sweeping 360-degree backdrop from the summit is spectacular. We also recommend wandering through the Redwood forest at the base of Te Mata Peak. Not only is it stunning grove of giant Californian Redwoods, but the clustered trees provide a cool respite from the summer sun, perfect for a leisurely rest.

Redwoods2

Redwoods walk

Wine Tasting
With 200 vineyards, 70+ wineries and 32+ cellar doors, it’s safe to say wine is our forte. If you’re a couple who loves a glass of Merlot Caber then you can’t go past wine tasting at some of the regions cellar doors. There are plenty of ways to do it: self-drive, self-guided cycling, or cycling tour – the choice is yours! If you want to go it alone, a Food & Wine map will be your bible while you’re travelling from one cellar door to the next, otherwise choose a tour from our expert locals. Discover more on our Wineries & Cellar Doors within the Drinks Guide.

Sunrise Gannet Tour
Have your own personal encounter with the magnificent Gannet seabirds as the sun rises over the plateau. You will be taken on a private tour in a 4x4 Range Rover to the Cape Kidnappers Gannet Colony, while being given the story of the area on the way. When you’ve reached the colony, you’ll be metres away from the colomy, and be able to watch adults and chicks nesting and performing their courtship dance. You’ll also be served a gourmet breakfast of croissants, ham & cheese, pastries and more. It’s a one-of-a-kind tour you won’t forget in a hurry!

Gannet Overland Safari Sunrise Tour2

Gannet Safari Overland Sunrise Tour

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Family Fun

Cycle on the Hawke’s Bay Trails
The entire family will love a morning or afternoon cycling the Hawke’s Bay Trails – they’re perfect for well-seasoned cyclists or young in’s with little legs. You can pick up a bike from one of the local operators using the Cycle map as your guide, or for the ultimate stress-free experience, book a tour. They can sort you out with the perfect bike for your abilities, and give you tips on where to go. They can even offer guided tours not to mention the drop-off and pick-up services if you’ve ridden too far and need a ride home.

Cycling

Cycle the Hawke's Bay Trails

Hit the Beaches
Sun, surf and sand is a combination best experienced in Hawke’s Bay. We’ve got a selection of top-notch beaches that we think will be perfect for the entire family. Locals love Waipatiki Beach (approximately 35 minutes north of Napier), and Waimarama and Ocean Beaches located 25-40 minutes south of Havelock North.  Each beach offers easy swimming, some higher swells thrown in for fun and golden sand to build sandcastles. We recommend having a few supplies in your arsenal (shade cover, sunscreen, food and water) as the beaches are isolated on the coast with limited supplies available.

Waipatiki Beach5

Waipatiki Beach

Eat & Drink: Options in Hawke’s Bay
With an ever-growing foodie scene harnessing our fresh produce, it means you are really spoilt for choice when it comes to dinner options in Hawke’s Bay. Whether you’re after fine-dining, street food or a quick bite on the go, we’ve got you covered. The brunch scene is also impressive – you can find more than just eggs on toast at one of the many cafes and eateries. Our ‘Food Guide’ makes it even easier to make your choice; with so many tasty options to choose from, you can make the entire family happy! Click here to find the full range.

Splash Planet
If you’re looking for a family activity that will keep the kids entertained for an entire day, you can’t go past Splash Planet. New Zealand’s only water park is open seven-days during summer from 10am – 5pm, is suitable for all ages and offers an impressive selection of dry rides and water attractions. Want to feel an adrenaline rush? Zoom down the indoor and outdoor waterslides, race around the track on the jungle jeeps, and collide with friends on the bumper boats. Rather take it easy? Choose your tube and float your way around the ‘Never Ending River’ while soaking up the glorious summer rays. All the action can make you hungry, so fuel up at The Fuel Shed, The Coffee Bean Cove or the Train Kiosk. You can also bring your own food into Splash Planet.

Splash Planet2

Splash Planet

Hike to breathtaking waterfalls
Hawke’s Bay is home to many natural wonders, a few of those being the collection of majestic waterfalls: Shine Falls, Te Ana Falls, Maraetotara Falls and Tangoio Falls. The ideal activity for the kids, you can get in a little exercise that has an epic reward at the end. Take your pick of which one suits you best, lace up your shoes and get exploring! We recommend taking supplies with you – sunscreen, hat and water as some include a 1h30 return walk.

Gannet Beach Adventures
Discover the colonies of Gannets at Cape Kidnappers with a fun and informative Gannet Beach Adventure! Jump on the back of a tractor as you are pulled along the coastline, learning about the geological features of the area on the way. See ancient fossils, earthquake faultlines and gullies that will fascinate both young and old before you reach the magnificent birds gathered together at Black Reef. Marvel at one of the most stunning seabirds as they hatch their young, soar gracefully and preen one another. To book a place on a Gannet Beach Adventure tour click here.

Gannet Beach Adventure2

Gannet Beach Adventures

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Food & Wine Lovers Escape

Fieldtrip Private Tours
Explore the very best of Hawke’s Bay with your own private guide – Desa from Fieldtrip Private Tours. Get taken through a range of experiences including: award-winning wine, craft beer, locally roasted coffee, artisan food, art, history and hidden gems. Rely on Desa’s local knowledge as she tailors a day around what interests you most, and what you’d like to see so you can explore like a local, with a local! Book your private tour here.

Art Deco Walking Tour or Vintage Car Tour
You may have heard of the Art Deco architecture lining the streets of Napier, but have you seen it for yourself? Lap up the city’s past from the knowledgeable folk at Art Deco Trust on a 2-hour walking tour of the city or a plush car ride through Napier’s affected suburbs. Did we mention, it’s an experience you can’t have anywhere else in New Zealand? After you’re done, wander through the CBD at your own pace and grab a coffee from one of the many talented baristas at one of the cafes/eateries.

Art Deco2

Vintage Car tour with Art Deco Trust

Winery Dinner for two
Nothing says romance like dinner at a Hawke’s Bay winery, so treat you and your loved one to a fine-dining experience while you’re visiting. Thanks to award-winning chefs, the food is always in a league of its own, matching the top-shelf wines. Choose from coastal settings with ocean views or inland wineries among the vines for your evening out. Our ‘Winery Dining’ page makes it even easier to make your choice – peruse the options and book your seat at the table.

Winery Dining

Dining at Elephant Hill Winery

Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Market
One thing we know for certain: you can’t come up to Hawke’s Bay without visiting the Hawke’s Bay Farmers’ Market – it’s the oldest and one of the biggest in the country. With the warmer months bringing those summer fruit and vegetables we love (think strawberries, cherries, blueberries, apricots and nectarines), the Farmers’ Market is bursting with fresh produce plucked straight from the source to the stall. Grab coffee and some breakfast or pick up fresh local produce, meats for the barbeques, gourmet goods for your platters, divine wines, beers and other non-alcoholic beverages, baked delights, sweet temptations, gifts and so many unique and interesting things to take home with you.

Wine Tasting
With 200 vineyards, 70+ wineries and 32+ cellar doors, it’s safe to say wine is our forte. If you’re a couple who loves a glass (or two) of Merlot Cabernet blends, Syrah or Chardonnay then wine tasting will be right up your alley. The toughest part of it all will be deciding where to start, but with the Hawke’s Bay Wine & Food Map, it’s easy. The map outlines some of the hotspots where you’ll find the must-visit wineries and how to get there. Or, if you to join a tour, there are plenty of options to choose from here.

Wine Tasting

Wine tasting at Oak Estate

Book a Hunter Gatherer Tour
Enlist the help of renown cheese master, Juliet Harbutt, as she guides you on a progressive journey through the region collecting all manner of artisan goods from fresh baked bread and juicy figs to cheeses and salamis all whilst telling a tale or two and sharing stories of the region. Wrap up the tour back at Juliet's place as your carefully collected goodies are turned in to a delectable lunch accompanied with a delightful Hawke's Bay drop.

Award Winning Restaurants
Book your seat at one of Hawke's Bay's award-winning restaurants! Six Hawke's Bay restaurants were recently embellished with winners titles and Hats at the Cuisine Good Food Awards. this is your opportunity to see for yourself why these establishments took out top honours.

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EXPLORE MORE

Hawke's Bay has so many hidden gems! Be sure to get exploring while you're here!

5 'Must Do's in Hawke's Bay

5 'Must Do's' in Napier

5 'Must Do's' in Hastings

5 'Must Do's' in Central Hawke's Bay

5 'Must Do's' in Wairoa

 

LOOKING FOR REFRESHMENTS? LOOK NO FURTHER...

Summer Hydration Hot Spots

Get a Hawke's Bay Scoop

Award Winning Dining

New kids on the Napier dining scene

 

REST YOUR WEARY HEAD

After all this adventuring, you'll need a cosy spot to recharge at the end if the day. Check out our Accommodation Guide for accommodation options to suit all needs!