Discover Auckland: The girls' weekend away you never knew you needed

It's time to pack your bags and temporarily leave Australia with your favourite girlies.

Nothing warms the heart (or fills the void) as much as a weekend away with your besties where you can escape the mundanities of every day and treat yourself to a variety of activities ranging from dining and drinking, island hopping, adventures, and cultural experiences. And what if we told you that you could cram that all into one long weekend and have it count as an overseas jaunt?

Auckland may just be the overlooked gem of New Zealand. With people heading to the south islands for picturesque views, snow trips, and hikes, Auckland is sitting pretty as an ideal weekend away destination only just over three hours from Sydney, Brisbane, and Melbourne.

From the breathtaking scenery and delicious wine on Waiheke Island to the thrilling heights of Auckland's Sky Tower, and the hidden gems and restaurants dotted along the water and into the city, there's never been a better time to grab your fave girlies and embark on a weekend you won't forget anytime soon.

Here's our ultimate guide to exploring Auckland for a girls' trip away

For the wine lovers

Two words: Waiheke Island.

A short 30-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland, the stunning Waiheke Island is a must-see for everyone enjoying an Auckland weekend. It's got everything... stunning wineries, picturesque beaches, and even a ziplining experience for those feeling more adventurous.

Waiheke Island's Stonyridge Vineyard is a must-visit. Photo:
Waiheke Island's Stonyridge Vineyard is a must-visit. Photo:

Must-visit locations: Kick off your day sailing through the skies with EcoZip adventures for an out-of-this-world view of the island. From there, wine lovers will adore Stonyridge Vineyard and their Bordeaux-style reds: Plus, the estate is now known as one of the top 10 must-visit wineries in the world, and for good reason!

Indulge in an epic lunch at Batch, the highest vineyard on Waiheke, and peruse at your leisure in the picturesque town centre before catching the afternoon ferry back.

Waiheke Island. Photo: Getty
Waiheke Island. Photo: Getty

For the deluxe hotel stayers

Auckland is brimming with luxurious accommodations to really make sure you're feeling catered and cared for. If you want to be by the water, in walking distance to the ferry that takes you to Waiheke, and close to numerous cute bars and cafes, Sofitel Auckland has you covered.

From the adorable towel art from the moment you enter the room to the in-house pool, gym, massage centre, breakfast, and bar, and the views overlooking the harbour, the only problem about your stay? You won't want to ever leave.

Auckland's Sofitel hotel
Indulge the girlies with a harbour-front stay at Auckland's Sofitel Hotel. Photo:

For the adventure-seekers

New Zealand is known as a place of adventure and you don't have to go South to experience it. You can take in the breathtaking view of the city and then jump off Auckland's Sky Tower, or if you're not feeling as adventurous, try out the Auckland bridge climb. If you want to keep your feet firmly on the ground, there are many epic hikes too. A short ferry or kayak away is Rangitoto Island, where you can climb to the top of the dormant volcano and experience some of the city's best views.

man jumps off sky tower auckland
Take a risk at Sky Tower in Auckland. Photo:

The Coast to Coast walk is another great way to see Auckland, with the walk passing through heritage sites and volcanoes for a panoramic view of the city.

For the cultural experience

There's nothing like a good dose of history when it comes to visiting another country, and while we may take New Zealand for granted at times as our friends across the ditch, there is a rich history to be learned from our neighbours.

The Auckland museum
The Auckland museum is a must-visit. Photo:

The Auckland War Memorial Museum is a great place to get started. The stunning building is full of fascinating facts from the moment New Zealand was founded, through to the animals who inhabited the land for many years, and New Zealand's involvement in the world wars.

For the foodies

Auckland is a foodies paradise! From fine dining to cute cafes and cheap eats, people with every dietary preference will find their new favourite treats in Auckland.

Onslow may be the best meal you'll ever have. Photo:
Onslow may be the best meal you'll ever have. Photo:

Seafood lovers will adore Onslow, a sophisticated but vibey restaurant that celebrates the best of New Zealand's produce. The salmon is a must-try and the oysters will live in your brain rent-free maybe for the rest of your life.

For the shoppers

A girls' weekend away isn't complete without a little retail therapy and Ponsonby Road in Auckland has you covered.

Stop by Orphans Kitchen on Ponsonby road for a caffeine hit. Photo:
Stop by Orphans Kitchen on Ponsonby road for a caffeine hit. Photo:

The street is filled with eateries, shops, and cute market-style finds as well as high-end fashion. Plus, there are plenty of bars nearby if you need a break from shopping up a storm and want to indulge in a cocktail or two.

Find out more at Discover Auckland and follow them on Instagram @visitauckland for inspiration to start planning your long weekend away!

Yahoo Lifestyle was the guest of Tātaki Auckland and the organisation's product partners.