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Auckland

Overview

Country: New Zealand

Currency: New Zealand Dollar (NZD)

Auckland is a city of volcanoes, with the ridges of lava flows forming its main thoroughfares and its many cones providing islands of green within the sea of suburbs. As well as being by far the largest, it’s also the most multicultural of New Zealand’s cities. A sizable Asian community rubs shoulders with the biggest Polynesian population of any city in the world.New Zealand’s largest city is home to about a third of the country's population. Tamaki Makaurau, as the Maori call it, is both a natural and manmade playground, with waterfront dining precincts, boutique-laden laneways, outlying wine country, secluded golden beaches, and 50 emerald isles dotting the Hauraki Gulf. Auckland is the perfect starting point for a North Island holiday, whether you're seeking leisure or adventure.

Attractions:

Auckland's vast harbour, quiet islands and vibrant cityscape offer an exciting and accessible mix of urban, water and wildlife activities.With hidden bays, islands, beaches and wineries on the fringes of this modern city with an historical heart, it's tricky to compile just a short list of things to do in Auckland. Major Auckland attractions include Parnell – the city's oldest suburb laced with heritage houses and boutiques – Auckland Zoo, Auckland Art Gallery, and the Auckland War Memorial Museum.

If you're really strapped for time, the one thing you must do is take in the view from high above the ground at Sky Tower. Here, you can walk out onto an external viewing platform or, if you're as brave as Beyonce was, base jump off the tower.

Things to do:

There are so many things to do in Auckland, from the mild to the wild. Experience Auckland’s fantastic food and wine, world-class shopping and exciting adventure activities. Get out on the harbour, check out the galleries or hop on a day tour to explore.?Central Auckland is a hub of urban delights set against beautiful coastal scenery. It’s not hard to see why this is regarded as one of the most livable cities in the world.Splurge on designer fashion, indulge in Pacific-Rim cuisine overlooking the harbour and discover buzzing waterfront precincts.

Must do’s are:

  • Kelly Tarlton's SEA LIFE Aquarium
  • Auckland Museum
  • Auckland Zoo
  • Mount Eden
  • Auckland Harbour Bridge Climb with AJ Hackett
  • Auckland Sky Tower with SkyCity
  • Auckland (Waitemata) Harbour
  • Tiritiri Matangi Island with 360 Discovery Cruises

Places to Stay:

Auckland is often the first port of call for visitors to the land of the long white cloud, meaning there are plenty of accommodation options, whether you're seeking a bustling backpackers or a secluded self-catered apartment.Auckland accommodation options cover the basic to the lavish – city hostels, smart bed-and-breakfasts, quaint cottages, sleek apartments, boutique art hotels and popular chains. Whatever you need, there's something with a Kiwi flavour to suit.

Many top-name hotels are in the city centre, while Auckalnd's volcanic hills and multiple islands, bays and beaches provide excellent vantage points for waterfront luxury across the region. If you don't need to stay right in town, consider a farmstay to give your holiday a different perspective!

Best Time to Visit:

Really, any time of the year is a good time. The summer months are from November to April, peak season is from October to March. This is not only because of foreign tourists but also domestic travellers who have holidays from 20th December to late January when schools close. Easter weekend and late October are also vacation times. So if you visit in this season, book in advance because it’s not so easy to find accommodation. In the non-peak months, the weather is still warm and accommodation easier to get.

For beach bums, January and February are the best time though other months are also quite warm. October and May are quieter and cheaper as all the rates start to come down, and if you avoid high altitude areas, then the weather can be cool and pleasant. Some transport services upcountry will have shut shop for the winter and some tramping trails might be shut, but what the heck. It's a gorgeous country and if you can put up with the cold, then you'll have the time of your life.