This divine little paradise is just 35 minutes from downtown Auckland by ferry. Of its permanent population of about 8,000, nearly 1,500 commute to the city each day to work; in summer, the island's population swells to over 40,000 as visitors come to languish in the enchanting mix of white-sand beaches, lush native bush, green farmland, top wineries and vineyards, and swish little cafes and restaurants. I strongly recommend that you stay at least 1 or 2 nights.