matakana winery tour

Wines and Wineries on The Matakana Coast

Matakana is New Zealand’s smallest wine area.The vineyards in the Matakana grow grapes to suit each vineyard’s  “terroir”, a combination of local climate and soil type, and each winery creates distinctively styled wines.

Driving north from Mahurangi West Wing Bed and Breakfast accommodation on your winery tour, you’ll first find yourself at Ransom Wines. With its contemporary  architecture and captivating views this is a fabulous winery to visit and while away some time. Visitors to this small family run winery can enjoy, among other wines at the cellar door, New Zealand’s first Carmenère. You should begin your day with one of fabulous platter for which Ransom’s are famous. This is served with matched wine.

If you are still hungry then lunch at the Mahurangi River Winery and Restaurant might be the next thing on your list. The vineyard lies in a valley between the Mahurangi River and Kawau Bay. The restaurant sits high on a hill and offers lovely views. From there you can choose delicious fresh local food from their a la carte menu. Mahurangi River produces a range of  hand made Chardonnay, Syrah and Bordeaux style red wines.

After lunch you may need a bit of a walk so why not check out the wonderful Brick Bay Sculpture Trail at Brick Bay Wines where you will find an display of around 40 sculpture works along a 2 km track and their outdoor gallery. These sculptures are always changing o there is always something new to see. At The Glass House, their tasting room, you can taste Pinot Gris, vibrant Rosés and intense Bordeaux-style red wine blends.

You may now need a “pick-me-up” coffee so you could finish your tour at Omaha Bay Wines. Omaha Bay is a family owned boutique vineyard and winery, overlooking the Hauraki Gulf to Little Barrier Island. Sit back and enjoy the view!

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golf accommodation

Golf Courses Nearby

A guest recently inquired after golf courses close to our bed and breakfast at Mahurangi West and so I put together this list for him. I had imagined the list would be reasonably brief, but was surprised to realise just how many fantastic golf courses are in this region: the Matakana Coast and beyond to Mangawhai.

Here is the list:

  • Warkworth golf course: 20 minute drive from Mahurangi West
  • Omaha links: a 30 minute drive from Mahurangi West
  • Whangaparaoa golf course – Peninsula Golf Club: 20 minutes drive from Mahurangi West
  • Gulf Harbour golf course: a second golf course set further down Whangaparaoa peninsula and about about a 40 minute drive south from Mahurangi West. You can see the Whangaparaoa peninsula from your deck at the Mahurangi West Wing bed and breakfast.
  • Mangawhai golf course: (my brother likes this one) this is about 50 minutes’ drive from from Mahurangi West and  “the Mangawhai Golf Club has consistently been regarded as one of the top courses in New Zealand”.
  • Huapai: maybe a 25 minute drive from Mahurangi West to the west (my brother has also been known to sneak off to this one)
  • Wellsford: maybe a 30 minute drive north from Mahurangi West
  • Helensville: 30 minutes west from Mahurangi West

As you can see there are loads of places in this area to enjoy a great game of golf and according to a 2013 article I found on the ranking of New Zealand golf courses from New Zealand industry leaders,”Gulf Harbour also moved up from number 13 to number nine. Mangawhai Golf Club and the Carrington Resort in the far north snuck into the “Top 15”.

Sounds like good reason for golfers to be happy to me, and Mahurangi West B&B is close to all these courses: only about a 20-30  minute drive in all directions.

For bed and breakfast inquiries, please go to our reservations page.

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Less than an hour from Auckland city you will find one of New Zealand’s most picturesque destinations. Between Auckland city and Northland is 1500 square kilometres of rolling green countryside with stunning beaches, native bush, exotic islands, sheltered harbours and  coastal reserves, walking tracks, beautiful regional parks, boutique vineyards, friendly towns, villages, cafes, restaurants and  markets. The Matakana Coast area offers everything from a traditional Kiwi beachside holiday, to a day out wine-tasting at one of the many vineyards.

Matakana Village itself  is a small town in the Rodney District of New Zealand. Warkworth is about 9 km to the south-west, Snells Beach the same distance to the south, Omaha is about 7 km to the east, and Leigh is about 13 km to the north-east.

The area surrounding Matakana contains several vineyards and is well known for its farmers’ market, cinema, cafes, restaurants and boutique food shops.

As word has spread of Matakana as a lifestyle location and weekend getaway for many Aucklanders, so too has its popularity, transforming Matakana Coast & Country into one of New Zealand’s hottest new holiday destinations.

Mahurangi West, on the Matakana cost is about 5 kms from Puhoi, the gateway to the Matakana Coast and about a 30 minute drive to Matakana Village. Mahurangi West is a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of Matakana and is only a 10 minute drive from Ransom’s Winery. We offer luxury bed and breakfast accommodation and have excellent walking tracks through the Mahurangi Park and along the coast.

Call us on 09 4220521 for more information about the B&B accommodation at Mahurangi West Wing or go to our reservations page to make a booking.

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bed and breakfast warkworth


These dolphins were happily playing just outside the Mahurangi Harbour. Jenni and her husband Brett, our neighbours at Mahurangi West, took this video while out in their lovely boat , Rosanna.

We often get some quite large pods of orca coming in to Mahurangi Harbour during winter and spring as they chase stingray. Quite a sight!

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Kowhai festival

Kowhai festivalThe Kowhai Festival

The general area in and around Warkworth is known as the Kowhai Coast, named after the native kowhai tree, and Warkworth is at the heart of the region.

The Kowhai Festival takes place every October in and around Warkworth, Matakana and the beautiful Mahurangi Coast from the 6th to the 20th October

It is organised by a group of dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers who are maintaining a 45-year tradition of celebrating all the things that make Rodney such a great place to live, work and play: gorgeous scenery, delicious food and wine, talented artists and musicians, diverse culture, fantastic recreational opportunities, great accommodation options and, above all, a welcoming and supportive community spirit.

11 October 2014 – Huge Day Out

The Huge Day out sees Warkworth Town Centre become a pedestrian zone, with lots of stalls and entertainment. Thousands of visitors are expected in Warkworth this weekend for the Kowhai Festival, particularly its hallmark event, the Huge Day Out, on Saturday.

Warkworth’s town centre roads are closed to most vehicles from 9am to 4pm to allow pedestrians to view the attractions. There will be kids’ entertainment, stalls, stalls and more stalls.

Enjoy wine, food and jazz down by the Riverside, 10am-4pm by the Mahurangi River, Wharf St. There is an all weather marquee, local wines, oysters, mussel fritters, cheese, cider, beer.

Come, enjoy the food and fun and then stay with us at Mahurangi West Wing, very comfortable bed and breakfast accommodation close to Warkworth.

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Wine at Matakana

Enjoy a taste of the good life on a road trip through Matakana Coast & Country. With sparkling beaches, flourishing marine reserves, gourmet treats, character pubs and friendly towns, this area is a favourite getaway less than an hour north of Auckland City.

Begin your adventure at the historic village of Puhoi, which was settled by immigrants from Bohemia (now the Czech Republic). Evidence of its Bohemian culture is still visible, particularly at the iconic Puhoi Pub with its interior filled with memorabilia.

At Puhoi you can also hire a kayak or canoe and paddle down the picturesque Puhoi River to the Wenderholm Regional Park, an expansive scenic park encompassing a long sandy beach, native forest and plenty of gorgeous scenery, before catching a courtesy coach back to Puhoi. Indulge on handcrafted cheeses and yoghurts at Puhoi Valley Café and Cheese Store before you set off for Warkworth.

About 2 kms north of Puhoi, on your way north to Warkworth, turn right into Mahurangi West Road. Carry on down this road for about 5kms and you’ll come to your B&B accommodation for the weekend.  If you give your hosts at Mahurangi West Wing a call, they can be available for you so you can drop your gear off and get organised before continuing north on your adventure.

Warkworth is the main town on the attention-grabbing Matakana Coast, with plenty of cafés, restaurants and boutique shops to explore. Take a stroll along the boardwalk lining the Mahurangi River in the heart of town, admire giant kauri trees at Parry Kauri Park, check out the museum or take a horse-riding trip. If you’re a craft beer fan or just like a good place to relax, visiting Tahi Bar is a must.

A detour well worth the effort is a side trip to Kawau Island. The departure point is from Sandspit, 10 minutes from Warkworth, and water taxis glide from here into the turquoise waters surrounding Kawau Island daily. Explore Mansion House, the stately home with exotic gardens that was developed by Sir George Grey, the first governor of New Zealand. You can also enjoy the impressive native flora and take one of the many walks.

Wine at Matakana

Wine at Matakana

Just outside of Warkworth is Matakana, a village that’s becoming increasingly popular as a weekend getaway destination thanks to its laid-back lifestyle and boutique wineries. Matakana Village has a cinema, boutique shops, excellent restaurants and there are many wineries and vineyards in the surrounding district. Morris and James Pottery and Café is well worth a visit, and the whole family will love the Matakana Country Park with its petting zoo, pony rides, gallery, café and gift shop.

If the likes of mussel fritters, organic blueberry ice cream, locally made olive oil and cheeses, artisan baking, freshly brewed coffee and fresh produce has your mouth watering, a trip to the Matakana Farmers’ Market is a must. Held in Matakana on Saturday morning, these markets are not only a chef’s heaven, they also have a wonderful atmosphere. With live music and entertainment, friendly locals and bargains galore, this is a great way to spend a Saturday morning.

Around 15 minutes from Matakana is Leigh, a relaxed township known for the great live-music gigs at the Leigh Sawmill Café, which is also home to a brewery, restaurant and accommodation options. At Leigh you can also charter a boat to take you to local dive spots or wander around the harbourside walkway.

If you like to be surrounded by an abundance of aquatic life, then Goat Island Marine Reserve just outside of Leigh will have your eyes darting in all directions. New Zealand’s first marine reserve is rich in the likes of lace coral, crustaceans, snapper, stingrays and kahawai. This underwater utopia provides obvious appeal if you’re keen on diving and snorkelling, but if you’d prefer to stay out of the water, the Glass Bottom Boat is a fine alternative.

When you’re finished exploring Leigh, loop back towards Auckland via Pakiri Beach – horse riding is available here – and Wellsford before rejoining SH 1 and heading south towards your glorious bed and breakfast accommodation for the night.

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