Eight New Cultural and Eco-Tourism Experiences to Have on Minjerribah

Experience one of the world’s largest sand islands situated in the pristine waters of Moreton Bay.

minjerribah sealink day passes

Unearth fascinating stories and immerse yourself in authentic arts, cultural and eco-tourism experiences with eight new Minjerribah SeaLink Day Passes launched by  Brisbane Economic Development Agency (BEDA) in partnership with Queensland Government and Redland City Council.

The curated Minjerribah SeaLink Day Pass experiences are designed to highlight the cultural, natural and historic appeal of Minjerribah / North Stradbroke Island in the heart of Quandamooka country—a 25-minute ferry trip from Cleveland on Brisbane’s Bayside. 

Minjerribah is one of the world’s largest sand islands situated in the pristine waters of Moreton Bay and easily accessible by SeaLink passenger or vehicular ferry for day-trippers and longer stays. 

From art galleries, sunrise yoga and headland scouting to tasting native bush food, immersive maker workshops and adventure trails for kids, Minjerribah is brimming with unique experiences. 

minjerribah sealink day passes

Island Arts and Heritage Day Pass

Availability: Wednesdays to Sundays, 11 May – 31 July 2022 
Meet talented local creatives and hear fascinating stories. Visit Island Art Galleries and the North Stradbroke Island Museum on Minjerribah. Check out the Museum shop and its range of incredible books before enjoying lunch at The Island Barn Cafe. Take a beach stroll and relax into the island sunset before taking your passenger ferry to return to the mainland. 

Day Pass includes: 

  • SeaLink passenger ferry transfers to/from the Island (Cleveland to Dunwich return) 
  • Entry fee to Museum 
  • Bookmark & Dilly Bag Gift from Delvene Cockatoo-Collins Design Studio 
  • Lunch (incl. beverage) of up to $20 at The Barn Cafe 
  • No minimum or maximum booking numbers apply 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Children’s Island Adventure Day Pass 

Availability: Wednesdays to Sundays, 11 May – 31 July 2022 
Families can enjoy an incredible day of fun reconnecting within a blissful island paradise. Children can participate in immersive activities and have their imaginations captivated by island storytellers. 

  • Start with a visit to the Delvene Cockatoo-Collins Studio, where children will make a little mermaid or a whale. 
  • Head across the road to the North Stradbroke Island Museum on Minjerribah to receive a special map featuring QR codes linked to clues for the Goompi Family Quest. 
  • Meet and follow Laddie, a young boy from Dunwich whose father was the Dunwich Benevolent Asylum’s postmaster since 1894. Explore the Museum exhibits, tackle some tasks and search through old photographs, charts and exhibits to find connections to Laddie’s life on the island. 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Minjerribah Cultural Experience hosted by Yura Tours 

Availability: every Tuesday & second Sunday + selected Fridays (13 and 27 May, 10 June and 24 June, 8 and 22 July), 10 May – 31 July 2022 
Three-hour driving tour with pick-up/drop-off from SeaLink Ferry by Quandamooka guide 

  • Visit Bummiera (Brown Lake) to experience a traditional Welcome to Country and take in the beautiful surroundings connecting you to Country. 
  • Walk-in ancestor footsteps, stopping in at Moongalaba / Terra Bulla (Old Mission Site) and Capemba (Myora Springs). 
  • Enjoy a guided cultural tour at the famous Mulumba (Point Lookout headland), listen to creation stories, take in the breathtaking views and learn about the different flora of the island and its Aboriginal uses. 
  • Travel to Gumpi (Dunwich) and browse the Gumpi art galleries, including Delvene Cockatoo-Collins Studio, where you can find a piece of Minjerribah to take home. 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Bushfoods Luncheon Day Pass 

Availability: Sat 25 June & Sat 9 July. Set time: 12.30 pm – 2 pm 
Culture and theatre combine with flavour and flair. 

  • Follow First Nation caretaker and classically trained chef Kieron Anderson as he unwinds ancient practices and shares sacred knowledge around food, art and Aboriginal culture. ‘The Quandamooka Chef’ shares his deep connection and understanding of First Nations culture, customs and the oldest food on the Earth. 
  • Enjoy a Cooking Demonstration and Cultural Storytelling (1.5 hours), taste local bush foods and feast on grazing plates full of unique local island delights. 
  • Luncheon Venue: North Stradbroke Island Museum on Minjerribah 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Island Social Golf Day Pass 

Availability: Saturdays and Sundays – 2 sessions per day (9 am – 1 pm and 12 pm – 4 pm), 14 May – 31 July 2022 
The North Stradbroke Island 9-Hole Golf Course shares a boundary with Heritage-listed Brown Lake. The course offers exquisite views of the Lake and Moreton Bay from Redland Bay to Brisbane and north to the Glasshouse Mountains and is shared with local fauna, including kangaroos, koalas and birdlife. 

Island Social Golf Day Passes include the following for groups of four players: 

  • Green fees and equipment hire 
  • Lunch/beverage meal deal 
  • Transport services to/from and on the island 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Island Oasis Yoga & Breakfast Day Pass 

Availability: Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday 8 am –11 am, 13 May – 31 July 2022 

  • Venue: Oasis on Straddie 
  • Start your experience at 8 am with a welcome smoothie followed by a moderate yoga infusion experience guided by a qualified yoga instructor. 
  • Enjoy a hand-crafted healthy continental breakfast of fresh fruits, gluten-free savoury tarts, island juice, etc. 
  • From 10 am, you are free to visit the nearby Home Beach for a refreshing swim before planning the rest of your day’s island activity. 
minjerribah sealink day passes

Island Photography Walk Day Pass 

Availability: Wednesdays and Fridays, 10.30 am – 12.30 pm, 11 May – 31 July 2022 
Join a two-hour Island Photography Walk around Minjerribah’s iconic North Gorge with local landscape photographer Julie Sisco.

• Suitable for all types of cameras, including phones, you’ll learn how to further develop your eye for photography. 
• Julie shares insights on composition and the use of elements within the frame. 
• Participants will also receive support material and an invitation to join a private Facebook group to share images from the day. 

minjerribah sealink day passes

Island Jewellery Making Day Pass 

Availability: Wednesdays and Thursdays – 2 sessions per day (10 am – 12 pm and 1 pm – 3 pm), 11 May – 31 July 2022 

  • Venue: Oasis on Straddie 
  • Join local Minjerribah artist Paula Boo as she guides you by designing your own earrings or pendant. 
  • Paula shares coiling basketry techniques to create individual pieces using natural and hand-dyed raffia and sterling silver jewellery. 

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Find Volcanoes, Wine Islands, and Thrills in Auckland

One minute you're on a ferry to wine island, the next you could be bungy jumping off of New Zealand's tallest tower.

things to do auckland
Photo: Natasha Bazika

The city of Auckland is a free spirit. It is easily the most geographically blessed city in New Zealand. Within an hour, you could be tasting wines on an island, chasing more than 50 volcanoes, or leaving footprints on a black sand beach. Keep in mind, that Auckland is the country’s most populous city but certainly doesn’t feel cramped.

Instead, the city is buzzing with trendy eateries, boutique shops, quiet streets, and expansive green parks. Around every corner, you’re never too far from something beautiful to see.

From world-class wines to kickass thrills, here’s where to find what you’re looking for in Auckland.

things to do auckland

Seek the thrills

If you thought Queenstown was the home of the adrenaline rush, wait until you see Auckland. In the middle of the city, you can jump off a sky tower or a bridge, zip through the jungle, and scream on a high-octane jet boat ride. The Sky Tower, which can be seen from every corner of Auckland is more than just a landmark. Take a ride to the top and sign up for a Skywalk, where you can wander around the platform, which just so happens to be 192 metres above the ground. If that doesn’t get your heart pumping, you can always jump off it. It’s New Zealand’s highest jump, and can only be described as just like being a movie stuntman, or a superhero. 

The other iconic place to jump off of is the Auckland Harbour Bridge. Unlike the Sky Jump, this one will have thrill seekers dipping their hands and head in the ocean. It’s a 40-metre Bungy, and a great experience. Although, if you’d rather still take advantage of the bridge views, book a climb, which takes you right to the top for sweeping views of the city.

Another way to take in the city is via Auckland Adventure Jet, which takes passengers for spins and tricks on the water.

Just a 35-minute boat ride from Auckland is Waiheke Island, where thrill-seekers will find Eco Zip Adventures. Across three separate lines, you will zip high above a working vineyard and lush, ancient forest canopies, soaking up incredible views back to the city and beyond.

things to do auckland
Photo: Natasha Bazika

Sip wine on Waiheke Island

Whether you want to spend a weekend or a day, Waiheke Island is a must-visit. It’s around a 35-minute ferry ride to the island from Auckland, and once there you can hop from winery to winery. The island is quite large and the terrain is rugged, so trust the experts and book a tour with Ananda Tours. The small, family-run business is owned by Jenny who has been on the island since before the vines were planted and she’s the best person to seek out when getting the Waiheke Island experience. You can book a private tour or group tour, and they can be catered to your preferences and tastes. A few standout stops include Kennedy Point, where they produce fully certified organic Syrah, Merlot, Malbec, Sauvignon Blanc, and Chardonnay wines. You can also state estate-grown olive oils, which the island has plenty of. Enjoy a tasting on the deck with views of Kennedy Bay, or enjoy a picnic under the olive grove.

For the best views on the island, head to Batch Vineyard. As the highest vineyard on Waiheke, you will be treated to panoramic views of the rolling hills, blue waters, and even Auckland city. Their sparkling wine, Blanc de Blancs is a must-try.

When it comes to lunch, there are two spots to choose from. The first is Stonyridge, which is also where you can taste premium award-winning wines, including a Cabernet blend Larose—New Zealand’s cult wine. The second is Mudbrick, a romantic spot, set amongst beautiful gardens with even more spectacular views, and a bar and bistro serving up some of the best dishes on the island.

things to do auckland
Photo: Natasha Bazika

Eat your way through the city

Auckland’s dining scene isn’t pretentious, but the food quality is good enough to rival the best restaurants in New York—but the city doesn’t like to brag. Instead, it celebrates good food in every setting, from waterside restaurants to trendy Mexican eateries in a shopping centre.

Inca, is helmed by critically acclaimed chef, Nic Watt. Inspired by Watt’s travels to Peru, diners can expect to find Nikkei cuisine, including spicy chicken karaage, hand-pressed corn tacos filled with pork cheek and spicy tuna. You wouldn’t expect to find such a good restaurant in a shopping centre, but there it is.

Another great trendy restaurant is Hello Beasty, which is home to the famous, prawn and crab toast. This work of art starts with a slice of crispy deep-fried bread, smothered with prawn and crab mousse. On top, there are slices of wagyu, drizzled with a sweet and sour sauce. Although, there are plenty of other great dishes on the menu, including a Sichuan tuna tartare, Korean fried cauliflower, and potstickers swimming in chilli oil. Try the yuzu mandarin soda if you’re looking for something fizzy to go with dinner or lunch.

Deli De Bossi is a recent opening and already becoming a favourite breakfast spot. Apart from coffee, you can get all kinds of toasted sandwiches, filled with everything from mushrooms to hams and salamis.

Another iconic eat-hit list is Parade in Ponsonby. Here, the burgers are served in a pretzel bun and filled with chicken or beef.

Most of these restaurants are casual, but if you’re looking for something a little fancy, book a table at Kingi. Taking cues from Sydney’s own Josh Niland, the dishes at Kingi focus on sustainable seafood, caught locally by local fishermen. The blue cod wings are a must. They’re covered in burnt lime and served with a ranch sauce for dipping. The stracciatella with feijoa is also a standout dish, that’s light and a great start to a meal. Inside, the dining room is cosy with bench seats, fire heaters, and exploded brick walls.

After dinner, walk down the street and grab dessert from Miann. The flavour of the day is always chocolate, and they serve up seriously good desserts. Try the tasting platter for a piece of each pastry on the menu of the day, or pick one that is most desirable to you. Although, the tasting platter is only $23 and you’d be missing out on tasting a little of everything they offer if you didn’t get it.

things to do auckland
Photo: Natasha Bazika

Discover art, culture, and movie magic

One of the best ways to learn about a city or country is by visiting its top museums and galleries. The Auckland War Memorial Museum sits atop a hill in Auckland’s Domain, which also happens to be the city’s oldest volcano. This museum is one of the most important as it tells the story of New Zealand’s natural and military history. Take a self-guided walking tour to explore at your own pace. There are plenty of interactive features for the kids and adults. The museum also hosts exhibitions. An ancient Greek exhibition is currently on display and is one of the largest exhibitions the British Museum has ever loaned to Aotearoa, New Zealand.

Art lovers, spend a few hours wandering around the Auckland Art Gallery, Toi O Tāmaki. You will find artworks from around the world, including a Picasso or two. Although, the exhibitions are a real treat. Yona Lee’s, An Arrangement of Five Rooms is an incredible installation, spanning multiple rooms, which you can sit on and touch—to immerse yourself in the artwork. Declaration: A Pacific Feminist Agenda, is another must-see exhibition exploring the most pressing issues of our times: climate change and resilience, tino rangatiratanga (sovereignty), activism and social justice.

While art and history museums are insightful and a great way to educate a visitor, there are some other museum types that can be a lot of fun and interactive. Weta Workshop Unleashed is a new Auckland attraction and an incredible experience you don’t want to miss. Step into the world of filmmaking, explore how horror, sci-fi, and fantasy films are made and at times feel as if you’re in a movie. Comedic tour guides will introduce you to movies that are in production and explain every aspect, from prop making to effects, and more. There are even mysteries to be solved, making it fun for the whole family. It’s truly an unmissable experience in Auckland, and one of the best, unique tours you might ever experience.

things to do auckland
Photo: @sidwithlens

Walk on a volcano

Erupting over 100,000 years ago, Pukekawa is one of Auckland’s oldest and most popular volcanoes. Today, the Domain parkland is the remains of the explosion crater and most of the surrounding tuff ring of Pukekawa. Most days you will see people running around the park, families picnicking on the weekend, and tourists snapping photos by the pond or under a magnificent tree, grown from an experiment conducted by the Auckland Acclimatisation Society. Enter from one end, enjoy a picturesque walk, and exit through the historic Parnell shopping and restaurant area. On a sunny day, the atmosphere is charged with romance, but even in the rain, it’s a moody, beautiful sight to see. The Auckland War Memorial Museum’s large neo-Greek architecture is also a standout, commanding top-of-the-mountain views.

where to stay in auckland

Where to stay in Auckland

If you’re looking to sleep on top of the world, you can’t beat a room in Cordis Auckland’s new Pinnacle Tower. From the pillowy-cloud-like beds, guests have sweeping views of the city from the Sky Tower to Rangitoto and Mount Eden. Enjoy a breakfast buffet in the Eight restaurant downstairs, and canapes and drinks in the Cordis Club lounge on the 14th floor. There’s also a health club, spa, and swimming pool. The hotel is within walking distance to some of the best eateries in Auckland, making it a prime option.

Although, if you’re looking to stay in the heart of Britomart, Auckland’s hub of shopping, eating, and drinking, then The Hotel Britomart is where you want to be. From its exterior of hand-made bricks to its beautifully timber-lined rooms, The Hotel Britomart does detail like nobody else. Plus, the best of downtown waterfront Auckland is just outside your front door. With 5 Green Star Design and Build ratings from the NZ Green Building Council, The Hotel Britomart is the country’s ONLY 5 Green Star hotel, and has sustainability built in from the ground up. 

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