Villa Maria

Winery in Auckland

Image by Steven Morris Photography Getty Images

Clearly the roar of jets doesn’t bother grapes, as NZ’s most awarded winery is just 4km from the airport. The parklike grounds of Villa Maria are a green oasis in the encircling industrial zone. Short tours ($5) take place at 11am and 2pm. There’s a charge for tastings ($5, refundable on purchase), but lingering over a lunch of wine and antipasto (platters $45 to $55, lunch $28 to $38) on the restaurant's terrace sure beats hanging around the departure lounge.

A series of concerts is held here every January and February featuring big international artists popular with the 40- to 50-something wine-swilling demographic.


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