ABOUT AUCKLAND

Auckland is a unique city which caters for any interest. From its rich traditional Māori heritage, wild volcanic landscapes, pristine nature, harbors & marinas, islands & beaches, award winning wineries, museums, delicious restaurants, great shopping & markets, to its thrilling and often unique adventure sports & activities for those seeking an adrenaline rush, Auckland and its surrounding areas is a great place to visit.

Auckland's incredible skyline together with its beautiful Harbors & Harbor bridge as well as Westhaven Marina provide some incredible views day or night. Auckland is surrounded by three harbors and 29,000 kilometers of coastline, which provides a diverse choice of beaches within close proximity of the city. From city beaches to white-sand beaches, black-sand beaches and island beaches, visitors are spoiled for choice.

Aerial view of Westhaven Marina & Central Auckland

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Auckland skyline at sunset

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

City: 

Diverse Precincts, Harbors, Waterfront, Restaurants, Shopping, Museums

Nature:

Beaches and Hiking Trails 

Home to a melting pot of cultures from around the world, Auckland has a diverse range of areas, each with its own distinct atmosphere and a huge selection of restaurants, shops, markets and museums. ​​

Recommended areas for dining and shopping include:

Pakiri beach, just 90 minutes north of downtown Auckland, is known for its Horse Rides, which are a great way to experience some of the area's beautiful scenery and rich Māori heritage. All rides travel along the pristine white sands of Pakiri beach, ride along traditional trails of the area's Ngāti Wai tribal ancestors, and continue through the sand dunes, with incredible views of the surrounding islands.

  • Inner city: Britomart, Federal Street, City Works Depot

  • Waterfront: Wynyard Quarter, Viaduct Harbour, Mission Bay, Ponsonby

  • Parnell and Newmarket

  • Kingsland and Mount Eden

  • Albany and Long Bay

  • Takapuna

  • Birkenhead

Britomart

Photo courtesy of Camilla Rutherford and the Tourism NZ Visual Library https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Pakiri Beach Horse Rides

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

There are thousands of walking and hiking trails to explore Auckland and its surrounding areas

The Hunua Ranges Regional Park is the largest area of native forest in Auckland. around 50 minutes southeast of downtown Auckland. It's a great day trip destination for nature lovers. There are different walking tracks of different duration and grades, picnic areas and the beautiful Hunua Falls. Thre are also 3 bike tracks to choose from. 

Duder Regional Park, Auckland has amazing heritage walks, including the Farm Loops Walk to  Whakakaiwhara Pā  where you can experience the remains of a fortified Māori  settlement (2.5 hours return by foot), and the Coastal Walk to the many surrounding beaches. You can also visits pockets of original nature forest and see the native trees and plants that the Māori have used for eating, weaving and building.  

Wynyard Quarter

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Sunset at Viaduct Harbour

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Posonby Central

Photo courtesy of Miles Holden and the Tourism NZ Visual Library https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Walking in the Hunua Ranges

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library 

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Manukau Heads is the name given to the two raised land masses that form the entrance to Manukau Harbor (one of Auckland's harbors). Manukau Heads Lighthouse, located on the southern head ("South Head"), is over 140 years old. Climb 120 easy stairs to reach the Lighthouse and adjacent Signal Station lookout. Stroll around the lightkeepers' balcony to experience breathtaking views of Manukau Bar, Paratutae (site of the first signal station), Auckland’s sub-tropical Waitakere Ranges, Auckland City, all of Manukau Harbor, and Mount Taranaki. Inside the lighthouse, there is an internal exhibition explaining the history of the lighthouse. 240 meters directly beneath Manukau Heads Lighthouse the surging surf is the only refuge of one of the world’s rarest marine mammals - Maui’s Dolphin – Cephalorhynchus

hectori maui. 45 minutes drive from downtown Auckland. 

Walking in Duder Regional Park

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Other amazing walking and hiking tracks include the Auckland coast to coast walk. This is a great way to enjoy views of the many ancient volcanic cones and craters which make up this unique landscape. There are also some incredible hikes on Auckland's islands, many of which are volcanic and give you the opportunity to climb through lava fields and geysers.

Manukau Heads Lighthouse

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Te Henga Walkway on Aucklands's west coast also has amazing cliff top and beach walks, including Muriwai beach

Muriwai beach coastal walk

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

assets.aucklandnz.com

Visit the beautiful Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manukau, where you can stroll around lakes and see more than 10,000 plants from around the world. 

Browse Auckland's bustling farmers' markets and arts and crafts markets:

Country markets:

City markets:

West Sculpture Path, Auckland Botanic Gardens

(sculpture: Rose Cathedral by Samantha Lissette, 2008)

Photo courtesy of Auckland Council

www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz

Head to the Matakana Village Farmers’ Market on Saturdays for artisan cheeses, Italian meats, organic chocolate, homemade chutneys, craft beer and other gourmet goodies.

On Sundays, the Clevedon Farmers’ Market serves up fresh produce, pastries and baking.

 

The popular Coatesville Country Market, held on the first Sunday of every month, has around 100 stalls selling food, art, jewellery, homewares and clothing. 

Matakana Village Farmer's Market

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Waiheke Island (Te Whau) - "Auckland's Island of Wine":

Manukau is the heart of Auckland’s south, a vibrant cosmopolitan center and home to the largest Polynesian community in the world. Visit Manukau's Otara Market, New Zealand’s largest street market, with authentic Māori, Pacific, Asian and Indian food, clothing and art on Saturday mornings. 

La Cigale French Market on Britomart and Parnell on Saturday and Sunday mornings has delicious fresh handmade foods.

 

The Auckland Night Markets, held at eight different locations across the region on different nights, has traditional street snacks and delicacies from around the world.

Manukau- Otara Markets

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Get a taste of Auckland’s own island of wine. Some 30 wineries and vineyards are dotted across the island, just a 40-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland. From prominent clifftop wineries to small cellar doors, you’ll find award-winning vintages and a wide range of varietals. Enjoy your wine with tranquil countryside vistas or sweeping views across the Hauraki Gulf.

 

Waiheke Island also delivers beautiful beaches and swimming locations, fun activities such as paddle boarding zip lining. 

Hike Bike Ako offers fully guided walking and electric bicycle tours on beautiful Waiheke Island with a Māori guide who will share the island’s rich Māori history.

A Waiheke Island winery

Photo courtesy of Miles Holden and the Tourism NZ Visual Library  https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Waiheke Island

Photo courtesy of Matt Crawford and the Tourism NZ Visual Library  

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Auckland's Volcanoes:

Waiheke Island paddle boarding

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Waiheke Island zip lining

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Auckland is built on an active volcanic field, which covers around 360 square kilometres under Auckland city. It includes 49 separate volcanoes, each of which is considered dormant or extinct. Each volcanic cone in Auckland stems from a separate eruption from the pool of magma that lies under the city. However, the underlying magma is still active – it may come through at a new place and form a new cone in the future.

Some of Auckland's most fascinating and popular volcanoes to visit and explore include:

Mount Mangere (Te Pane o Mataoho) is Auckland’s best-preserved volcanic cone, It is a scoria cone volcano, formed around 18,000 years ago, and sits 106 meters above sea level, looking out across the Manukau Harbour. Head up the trail and explore the remains of former Māori settlements. It is the only Auckland volcano to feature a lava dome in the center of the crater.

Mount Mangere volcano, Auckland

Photo courtesy of GeoNet & Science Learning Hub – Pokapū Akoranga Pūtaiao, University of Waikato, www.sciencelearn.org.nz , published 13/07/2017

Māori - The Indigenous People of New Zealand:

Māori are the indigenous people of New Zealand, and their culture is unique to the island nation. Early Māori called Auckland "Tāmaki Makaurau" – "a place desired by many". 

There are so many ways to experience Māori culture in Auckland and its surroundings, from guided tours that give you an insight into Māori history, traditions and beliefs, through to contemporary Māori art at local galleries and cultural performances.

Māori cultural performance

Photo courtesy of www.pixabay.com

Auckland Domain (Pukekawa) is one of Auckland's oldest volcanoes, erupting over 150,000 years ago. It is also Auckland’s oldest park and is home to the Auckland Museum, a spectacular building sitting prominently on the crater rim with great views. The Auckland Museum has multiple daily Māori cultural performances, which are recognized among the best in New Zealand and which culminate with a moving version of the world-famous haka, a Māori war dance.

Auckland Domain volcano (Pukekawa), Auckland

Photo courtesy of Google Earth & Science Learning Hub- Pokapū Akoranga Pūtaiao, University of Waikato, www.sciencelearn.org.nz , published 12/07/2017

Auckland Museum, Auckland Domain

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Māori Cultural Performance, Auckland Museum

Photo courtesy of  '© Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tāmaki Paenga Hira', https://www.aucklandmuseum.com/publicity-images

Mount Eden (Maungawhau) is a scoria cone volcano that last erupted around 20,000 years ago. At 196 m in height, Mount Eden is the highest natural point in Auckland. Cycle or climb up to the summit for a sweeping view over the city and the Waitemata Harbour beyond. Mount Eden has three main craters in a row, creating an oval shape covered in green parkland. You can visit a former Māori settlement with old occupation terraces, storage pits and housing sites and join a guided walk (Tāmaki Hikoi ) of the mountain and its surrounds, led by a tribe member who will unlock the mountain’s rich history. 

Eden Park Stadium, New Zealand's largest sports stadium, is located near Mount Eden. It regularly hosts All Blacks rugby union test matches, cricket matches and other sports events.

Inside Mount Eden (Maungawhau) volcanic cone

Photo courtesy of Science Learning Hub – Pokapū Akoranga Pūtaiao, University of Waikato, www.sciencelearn.org.nz; Rights: Public domain

Eden Park rugby stadium

Photo courtesy of Tourism New Zealand and the Tourism NZ Visual Library 

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Source Phil Walter, Getty Images AsiaPac,  (Sept. 13, 2013)

One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie) is one of the largest and most culturally significant volcanoes. With more than 170 constructed terraces based around three Māori Pa (fortifications), it is one of the largest former Māori settlement complexes in New Zealand, and has even been claimed to be the largest pre-historic earth fort in the world.

One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie) volcano, Auckland

Photo courtesy of Science Learning Hub –

Pokapū Akoranga Pūtaiao, University of Waikato, www.sciencelearn.org.nz; Rights: Public domain

In the scenic suburb of Devonport, there are two volcanic cones that sit side by side - Mount Victoria (Takarunga) and North Head (Maungauika). 

Walk to Mount Victoria’s summit and experience incredible sea views across Auckland, its North Shore, and the Hauraki Gulf .

Jutting out into the harbor, North Head provides some of the best views in Auckland, offering incredible 360-degree views over the Hauraki Gulf and across to the city. Formed over 50,000 years ago, North Head is one of the region’s oldest volcanic cones and is also one of the most significant historical coastal defense sites in New Zealand.

North Head Volcano, with Rangitoto Island in the background

Photo courtesy of Elaine Smid, Flying Over Auckland blog,

posted May 17, 2014

https://cityofvolcanoes.wordpress.com/research-blog/page/1/

Cycling to the top of North Head

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Mount Victoria, with a view of Rangitoto Island in the background

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library assets.aucklandnz.com

Rangitoto Island, Hauraki Gulf Marine Park:

Hauraki Gulf Marine Park (Ko te Pataka kai o Tikapa Moana Te Moananui a Toi), lies on the east coast of the Auckland region and is home to a myriad of islands and five marine reserves, most of which can be visited for recreation and relaxation. Hauraki Gulf Marine Park covers an area of more than 1.2 million hectares. There are more than 50 islands within the park, many of which are public conservation lands.

One of the most famous sites in Hauraki Gulf Marine Park and an Auckland icon is Rangitoto Island (Te Rangi-i-totongia-a-Tama-te-kapua), which was formed by the most recent volcanic eruption 600 years ago. Rangitoto Island’s impressive symmetrical cone, sitting just off the coast, makes it one of the area's most distinctive natural landmarks. This popular summit walk begins at Rangitoto Wharf and climbs through lava fields and the world's largest pohutukawa forest to the island’s peak at 259m above sea level. At the summit you will be rewarded with spectacular panoramic views of Auckland and the surrounding Hauraki Gulf islands. The Auckland Rangitoto ferry route generally operates 3 times daily, with a sailing duration of around 25 minutes.

Volcanic Rangitoto Island

Photo courtesy of Fraser Clements and the Tourism NZ Visual Library 

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Volcanic Rangitoto, Auckland

Photo courtesy of Fraser Clements and the Tourism NZ Visual Library 

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Rangitoto Island lava fields

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Adrenaline Activities in Auckland: 

Auckland boasts some of the most exciting activities to get your heart pumping 

The Auckland Harbor Bridge Climb:

Auckland Harbour Bridge climb, 

Photo courtesy of A. J. Hackett, Bungy New Zealand and the Tourism NZ Visual Library 

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Bungy Jumping off the Auckland Harbor Bridge:

New Zealand is the home of modern bungy jumping and it is one of its most popular tourist attractions.

Those brave enough can bungy jump off the Auckland Harbor Bridge.

Bungy jumping off Auckland Harbor Bridge at sunset

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Bungy jumping off Auckland Harbor Bridge

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

The Auckland Sky Tower:


The Auckland Sky Tower is the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere. Located in Auckland’s CBD with a height of 328m, the Sky Tower is an icon of Auckland’s sky line and is the adrenaline hub of the city:

  • Skyjumping: Jumpers, attached to a harness and cable, jump from the Auckland Sky Tower head first. Plummet towards the earth in a controlled 11 second fall from 192 meters up (53 floors) at around 85 km per hour in a horizontal starfish position while still landing smoothly on your feet!

  • SkyWalk: Walk around an open ledge on the Auckland Sky Tower with no handrails to separate you from the 192m drop. The ledge provides epic 360-degree views of the city. Guides instruct walker in some thrilling adrenaline-fuelled challenges.

Skydiving in Auckland:

Skydive Auckland

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Skydive Auckland

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Auckland Skywalk

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Auckland Sky Tower

Photo courtesy of Sky Walk and the Tourism NZ Visual Library 

https://visuals.newzealand.com/

Auckland skyjump

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

Getting Around Auckland:

Public Transport - Trains, Buses and Ferries

It is easy to travel by train, bus or ferry throughout the inner city and the wider region, with regular routes to most major attractions, shopping, dining and entertainment precincts.

Britomart, in downtown Auckland, is the main transport hub and is where many bus and train journeys start and finish. Ferries also arrive and depart from downtown Auckland, just two minutes' walk from Britomart. 

Find public transport services, maps and timetables at Auckland Transport's AT Journey Planner- 

https://at.govt.nz/bus-train-ferry

You can also buy an AT HOP card, a pre-pay smart card that can be used across buses, trains and ferries.

 

Information courtesy of ATEED and Auckland Council official website https://www.aucklandnz.com/

As in every major city, there are also taxis available. 

Ferry departing downtown Auckland

Photo courtesy of Auckland Asset Library

https://assets.aucklandnz.com/

i-SITE Visitor Information Centres

Tours and Hop-On, Hop-Off Buses

If you are short on time, you can join hop-on, hop-off buses to visit some of Auckland's main attractions. You can also join various tours.

For more information about tours, please refer to the ATEED and Auckland Council official website https://www.aucklandnz.com/ 

or i-SITE Visitor Information Centres https://www.aucklandnz.com/visit/discover/i-SITE-Visitor-Information-Centres

 

i-SITE Visitor Information Centres https://www.aucklandnz.com/visit/discover/i-SITE-Visitor-Information-Centres

Local experts with bilingual staff can provide free assistance with: visitor information, visitor guides and maps, airport and city transfers, travel sim cards for phones, public transport and HOP cards, taxis, car rentals, accommodation, attractions and activities, sightseeing tours and transport both within Auckland and for short trips to attractions in areas close to Auckland.

For more information, you can also visit the ATEED and Auckland Council official website 

https://www.aucklandnz.com/  

Getting to and from Auckland Airport:

Auckland's international and domestic airport terminals are about 45 minutes from downtown Auckland. Regular shuttles, transfers, private transport and bus services are available 24 hours, 7 days a week.

Taxi and shuttle ranks are located outside the arrivals area at the international terminal as well as outside the luggage collection area at the domestic terminal.

You can also get more information at the i-SITE Visitor Information Centre, located in the international terminal  

https://www.aucklandnz.com/visit/discover/i-SITE-Visitor-Information-Centres

Information courtesy of ATEED and Auckland Council official website https://www.aucklandnz.com/

Weather:

The Auckland region enjoys a warm, coastal climate without any extreme temperatures. It is Autumn in New Zealand during the month of March, and the average daytime temperatures are 13 - 20°C (55 - 68°F), with very little rain at this time of the year. However, due to changeable Auckland weather conditions, it is recommended to be prepared for cold fronts and rain. 

Information courtesy of New Zealand Tourism Guide https://www.tourism.net.nz/new-zealand/about-new-zealand/weather-and-climate.html

Central Auckland is a vibrant mix of shopping, dining and entertainment. Explore the city's wide range of different shopping experiences from local and international designer clothes to retro and vintage fashions. Or soak up the lively nightlife with a visit to one of Auckland's many bars and eateries.

Auckland is surrounded by three harbors and 29,000 kilometers of coastline, which provides a diverse choice of beaches within close proximity of the city. From city beaches to white-sand beaches, black-sand beaches and island beaches, visitors are spoiled for choice.

  • Recommended areas for dining and shopping include:

  • Inner city: Britomart, Federal Street, City Works Depot

  • Waterfront: Wynyard Quarter, Viaduct Harbour, Mission Bay, Ponsonby

  • Parnell and Newmarket

  • Kingsland and Mount Eden

  • Albany and Long Bay

  • Takapuna

  • Birkenhead

Auckland's incredible skyline together with its beautiful Harbors & Harbor bridge as well as Westhaven Marina provide some incredible views day or night. 

Waiheke Island is the ultimate island retreat, just a 35-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland.

4. Day trip to an isle of wine

Just a 40-minute ferry ride and you’re in Waiheke Island, Auckland’s island of wine. This slice of paradise is a haven of beautiful island beaches and some 30 wineries. Join a wine tasting tour and linger over a vineyard lunch, with gorgeous views to match. 

Imagine an urban environment where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking trails and a dozen enchanting holiday islands. Add a sunny climate, a background rhythm of Polynesian culture and a passion for outstanding food, wine and shopping, and you’re beginning to get the picture of Auckland, New Zealand, our largest and most diverse city.

 

More than just a city, Auckland is a whole region full of things to see and do. Best of all, with so many experiences close by it’s easy to hop from one adventure to the next.

City: 

Diverse Precincts, Harbors, Waterfront, Restaurants, Shopping, Museums

Home to a melting pot of cultures from around the world, Auckland has a diverse range of areas, each with its own distinct atmosphere and a huge selection of restaurants, shops, markets and museums. ​​

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki. Housing more than 15,000 artworks, world-class touring exhibitions, and a lovely café, it’s easy to lose yourself for a few hours here. You can also join one of the daily guided tours for an insightful commentary on selected works from the collection.

The iconic Queen Street has it all

From luxe to bargain finds, and the best souvenir shops in town, Queen Street tops the list of shopoholics.

 

Souvenir shops are concentrated towards the harbour end of the street or tucked away in arcades. Top international luxury labels are housed in its lower, harbour-end and on Customs St (just off it). All along Queen Street, Cobbled laneways take you to some of the city’s best fashion and lifestyle boutique stores. They are also home to flavour-filled cafes and restaurants – do try!

See the world’s largest collection of Māori taonga

Discover more than 1000 taonga (treasures) at the Auckland Museum – the largest collection in New Zealand (and the world). From small precious artefacts to an original full-size marae (meeting house) and waka (canoe), this is a fascinating glimpse into early Māori culture. 

Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tamaki Paenga Hira

Welcome to Auckland Museum - your first stop to gain an insight into New Zealand and its people.

 

 

Be inspired by the compelling story of our nation; from our unique Maori culture and natural world, social history to the story of New Zealand at war.

Auckland Museum is regarded as one of the finest Museums in the Southern Hemisphere and is renowned for its unique collection of Māori and Pacific treasures.

Housed in one of the country's finest heritage buildings, the Museum tells the story of New Zealand as a nation; from award-winning natural history exhibits to galleries which investigate New Zealand's cultural origins.

Scars on the Heart, the Museum's war memorial exhibition, tells the story of New Zealand at war, while He Taonga Māori - the Museum's Māori treasures gallery, displays over 2,000 priceless Māori artefacts, including rare carvings and the last great Māori war canoe carved from a giant Totara tree.

Mount Eden (Maungawhau) is a scoria cone volcano that last erupted around 20,000 years ago. At 196 m in height, Mount Eden is the highest natural point in Auckland. Cycle or climb up to the summit for a sweeping view over the city and the Waitemata Harbour beyond. Mount Eden has three main craters in a row, creating an oval shape covered in green parkland. You can visit a former Māori settlement with old occupation terraces, storage pits and housing sites and join a guided walk (Tāmaki Hikoi ) of the mountain and its surrounds, led by a tribe member who will unlock the mountain’s rich history. 

Eden Park Stadium, New Zealand's largest sports stadium, is located near Mount Eden. It regularly hosts All Blacks rugby union test matches, cricket matches and other sports events.

Auckland is also home to 48 dormant and extinct volcanic cones, many of which offer spectacular walking paths and views at the top. Don’t miss a short hike up Mount Eden, where you’ll find panoramic views of the Auckland region

Site of Auckland's highest volcano, with spectacular city & harbour views & a large crater.

At 196 metres high, Mount Eden – Maungawhau is the highest of our mainland volcanoes. Cycle or climb up to the summit for a sweeping outlook over the city and the Waitemata Harbour beyond.

Formed some 20,000 to 30,000 years ago, Mount Eden features three main craters in a row, creating an oval shape covered in green parkland. Get a glimpse into former Māori settlement with old occupation terraces, storage pits and housing sites.

The Ngati Whatua tribe is the guardian of the mountain and you can join a guided walk – Tāmaki Hikoi – of the mountain and its surrounds, led by a tribe member who will unlock the mountain’s rich history.

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