Waiheke is a must see

Last updated 05:00 05/12/2012
Palm Beach

ISLAND IDYLL: The beauty of Palm Beach has helped get Waiheke Island voted 57th in the new AA Tourism list of must-do places to visit.

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Waiheke Island has been voted into two places in AA Tourism's latest survey of the top must-do places in New Zealand.

It's the first time the island has registered in the top 101 places to visit.

While Hanmer Springs Thermal Pools and Spa has been confirmed as New Zealand's favourite must-do spot, Waiheke's beaches and the island as a whole picked up 57th and 61st places.

The AA survey involved a six-week voting campaign. It clocked up 283,000 votes split over 1600 attractions across the country. The top 10 winners were evenly split between the North and South Islands, but expanding the placings to 25 showed North Island attractions dominating.

AA Tourism general manager for marketing Rebecca Cherry says the list reflects the evolving tourism industry.

"The new list is a nod towards the increasing popularity of family friendly soft adventures rather than adrenalin- pumping activities like bungy jumping."

The AA Tourism survey describes Waiheke Island in 57th spot as "idyllic with magnificent beaches and friendly locals".

Plus "the short ferry ride from Auckland gives the impression of visiting a tropical island".

In its reference to Waiheke in the 61st place it says it is "the jewel of the Hauraki Gulf".

"Waiheke is a haven of beautiful vineyards, olive groves, farmland and beaches all just a 35-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland."

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