Although Auckland isn’t the capital of New Zealand, it surely is a major city with plenty of attractions. Kiwis love for adventure sports can be identified with such activities available in the in the city center. This includes the option of jumping from a skyscraper. For others, Auckland offers many scenic areas around the city, revealing the magnificent nature that has made New Zealand famous. If you are in search of an adventure or a relaxing holiday, New Zealand is the destination for you.
Flying from Australia you will arrive at Auckland Airport, situated 21 km from the city center. Most people travelling to New Zealand want to experience as much of the country as possible, and the easiest way is by bus. There are several bus companies operating throughout the country, with some services offering package deals with included accommodation. There are many bus routes within the city in Auckland but walking maybe an option, since the distances between the attractions are minimal.
Places to visit
- One of the most popular attractions in the city is Auckland museum. Here you can experience the Maori culture by learning about their vibrant dance, the Haka, as well as visit several other exhibitions.
- Waiheke Island is located about 18km outside Auckland. The island offers a great range of activities and wonderful sightseeing. If you want to capture all of the islands picturesque landscape you should take a scenic flight in one of the small airplanes that are on offer. There are several tours that you can choose from.
- Just an hour drive north of Auckland is where the Goat Island is situated. Here you will find one of New Zealand’s best locations to participate in activities including snorkeling and scuba diving.
- Rangitoto Island is a volcanic island rising 260 meters above the sea level and an icon for Auckland city. The island is a popular destination for tourists eager to escape the city.
- Waitakere Ranges Regional Park has 250km of hiking tracks providing access to beautiful waterfalls, wide stretched beaches and spectacular rocky formations.
Leisure and activities
- One of the most thrilling attractions is offered at the famous Sky Tower in Auckland. At the top, 192 meters above the ground, you can either experience the rush of a freefall and skyjump (basejump) off the edge or take a walk around the one meter wide walkway around the tower with nothing but a wire holding you back. This is a great place to enjoy the spectacular views of Auckland city.
- Experience the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park where you can go on a whale and dolphin safari and interact with the animals.
- Auckland Zoo is one of New Zealand’s largest zoos stretching over 17 hectares of parkland and hosting the largest collection of exotic and native animals. You can also go on behind the scene tours to get close encounters with your favorite animals. If you have the time, take the guided night walk to see the animals through a completely different perspective.
Places to eat
Just like Australia, New Zealand offers a wide range of cuisines, everything from Italian to Chinese. It’s easy to find good restaurants offering just the food you´re yearning for. There are several restaurants inside the Sky City providing a great mix of fast food and more sophisticated fine dining. If you get the opportunity, visit Hectors Restaurant to enjoy an award-winning and innovative culinary experience. Down at the vibrant Viaduct Harbor you will also find plenty of dining opportunities that will exceed your expectations.
As mentioned above, the Sky City in Auckland is a multi venue complex providing various entertainment. It houses several bars and restaurants as well as two casinos. The Sky City Theatre hosts cabarets, concerts and other live performances. If you want to feel the pulse of Auckland’s nightlife you can head down to the area around the waterfront where there are plenty of bars. If you want a special and “cool” experience you should visit the Minus5 Bar where everything is made out of ice.
City for kids
The Auckland Zoo is a perfect place to visit with the entire family. The zoo offers many daily animal shows, including encounters with their favorite animals and even the opportunity to work alongside with the zookeepers for a day. Otherwise, just drop the kids off at the KidZone where they can play with smaller animals such as guinea pigs and rabbits.
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