Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, and once the capital city of New Zealand
, built on a strip of land between the harbours of Waitemata and Manukau. It is a modern and vibrant city and the ‘gateway’ to New Zealand. Most visitors fly to either Auckland or Christchurch. There are numerous visitor attractions and exciting activities to enjoy in and around Auckland.
If you are on a touring holiday and using Auckland as a short stay holiday destination you will find plenty of visitor tours and excursions on offer to enable you to get the most out of your stay here.
The Auckland Explorer Bus where you can hop on and off is a good place to start; this sightseeing tour bus takes in many of the city’s attractions and has audio commentary. If there is somewhere of particular interest and you would like to spend some time exploring at your leisure you can get off and get on an Explorer bus again later.
The Sky Tower is the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere at 328 metres; it is part of the Sky City Entertainment Complex. Visitors to the tower have unforgettable views of the harbour and over the city. Be aware of Auckland at your feet as you stand on the glass floor panels! There are touch screen computers and audio and visual guides. You may be tempted to have a meal in the revolving restaurant.
Auckland city centre can be easily explored on foot, if you want shopping, Queen Street is the best place to start, central Auckland is where you will find the designer labels and popular fashion outlets. The suburbs of Auckland are also popular and well known for their shopping opportunities. Parnell Road (village) is a trendy area with upmarket eateries, shopping and art. Takapuna is a lively suburb a short distance from the busy shopping centre you will find Takapuna Beach where you may like to spend some time, with white sand, beautiful views and safe bathing it makes a lovely setting for a little relaxation.
The city has several cinemas some situated along Queen Street there are theatres with musical productions and plays, performances of rock, drama and dance often take place at the Sky City Theatre. If you prefer clubs you should find something to suit you at the harbour area and on Queen Street there are plenty of bars including an Irish bar for food and refreshments
Wine is a popular purchase; most visitors will go direct to the vineyards to choose their wine, many wineries offer ‘cellar door sales’. You can book a vineyard tour if you would like to see and learn more about wine producing and maybe get the opportunity to walk through a vineyard. Cultural attractions within the city include Auckland Museum which is one of the most visited attractions
; it houses a remarkable collection of Maori and Polynesian artefacts and cultural exhibits.
Auckland – Museum of Transport and Technology is well worth visiting, located in the Western Springs district items on display include vintage cars, old coaches, locomotive and railroad stock. You should make some time to visit the Waitakere Rainforest, approximately a 30 minute drive away, see the giant ferns and the famous kauri trees. Learn about Maori traditions and take a guided walk into the rainforest and a stroll along the beach. One of the tours you can take is through the Westhaven Marina which is home to thousands of yachts and see for yourselves why Auckland is known as the ‘City of Sails’.