Waiheke is about 35 minutes from Auckland Central by ferry. I made use of one of the first nice weekend days in quite a while and went there. On the island I rent a bike and started my exploration tour. I had read in my New Zealand guide that the island was supposed to be quite hilly but I had not expected to be that bad. I guess, being used to flat Hannover and not having cycled in half a year did not really help either.
Most of the 8000 habitants live in the west part which is where the main beaches are as well. In the centre of Waiheke there are some vineyards and the east is dominated by farm grounds for sheep and cows.
All in all it was a really nice day out with heaps of fantastic views and colourful gardens.