New Zealand's largest city, Built on a narrow isthmus between two island-studded harbours, Auckland is reknowned for its beauty, with 100km of coastline crammed with stunning beaches, 23 regional parks, two marine reserves and a landscape dotted with 48 volcanic cones. With all the water surrounding the region, it's no wonder Aucklanders boast the largest boat ownership per capita in the world - that's why it's called "The City of Sails".
The city has a huge range of activities and attractions to offer visitors. You can dine at more than 800 restaurants, catch awesome views from atop the tallest tower in the Southern Hemisphere or from one of the city's volcanic vantage points, or take in the theatre at the world-class Aotea Centre. There's the Auckland Museum, National Maritime Museum, the historic Auckland Art Gallery, Kelly Tarlton's Underwater World, the Zoo - the list goes on.
Auckland War Memorial Museum:There's always something interesting to check out at Auckland's largest museum.
Whether it's the story of New Zealand history, its place in the Pacific and its
people, or the interactive Volcanoes
Gallery, social and military history collections, you can easily while away a
whole day here. Set in the picturesque grounds of the Auckland Domain, this
museum was first established in 1852 in a two-room farm cottage in the
central Auckland suburb of Grafton. Today Auckland Museum has nationally
and internationally significant collections. It attracts around half a million
visitors every year.
Kelly Tarlton's Underwater
World:Auckland is a city that takes pride in our sealife and harbour location. So why
not head down to the best underwater world around, without getting wet? I'm
talking about Kelly Tarlton's
Underwater World on Tamaki Drive.
This centre was the vision of Kelly Tarlton, an extraordinary Kiwi
adventurer, diver, explorer and inventor, who wanted to share his love of the
ocean with others. Enjoy the Antarctic Encounter, home to New Zealandâ€™s
only sub-Antarctic penguins. Be
amazed in the Underwater World by looking at giant stingrays, sharks and
the rich variety of species from New Zealandâ€™s coastal waters.
MOTAT - Museum of Transport and
Technology:MOTAT is New Zealand's largest transport and technology museum. Set on 40
acres, MOTAT will take you on an interactive
journey through many of the technological achievements that have helped shape
New Zealand. You can take a tram ride, check out old war planes, an historical
village and the Pumphouse, with its magnificent Beam Engine, which has had
extensive conservation to ensure its significance in Auckland's history is
Waiwera Thermal Spa
Feel like splashing out on one of the best hot water thermal parks in the
country? Then head to Waiwera
Thermal Spa Resort, 40 minutes north of central Auckland for a fun day out.
Relax your muscles - and your mind - as you soak up the warmth of the pools,
take the kids down the hydra-slides or have a massage in the day and medi-spa.
Waiwera Thermal Resort attracts more than 350,000 visitors each year.
Waiheke Island:This beautiful island is just 35 minutes from Auckland by ferry and once you
reach it, you will have so much to explore. Waiheke boasts a subtropical
climate and a 100km coastline. Take a ferry from Half Moon Bay in East
Auckland, or Prince's Wharf in Auckland central, to the island for a long
holiday or just a day trip. Once you have reached your destination, have a
picnic, visit the many vineyards, walk through the historical Stony Batter or
take the kids and explore all the family-friendly beaches and attractions on
SKYCITY Casino and
entertainment complex:Located right in the heart of the city, you can't miss this architectural
masterpiece. Step inside and you experience the glamour of a casino with
pepperings of New Zealand culture seen in the design of the building. The
world-class casino offers
hours of entertainment, and when you feel like a bite to eat, there are plenty
of restaurants and bars to choose from. Take a ride to the top to
enjoy breathtaking 360
degree views as you eat your
meal at Orbit Revolving Restaurant or go higher to the 328m tall Sky Tower. You can take a walk
around the top of the pergola or for the most daring, make the Sky Jump.
Auckland Zoo:Auckland Zoo has New Zealand's
largest collection of animals and is recognised as one of the most progressive
zoos in the world. The zoo is just a five-minute drive from central Auckland
and borders the stunning Western Springs Park. Its home to 120 different
species and over 750 animals. Auckland
Zoo has recently opened Te
Wao Nui which showcases our native animals, plants and culture. Red Pander
Encounters are also a popular attraction, in addition to the all-time favourite
elephants, giraffes and chimps.
Vineyards:Auckland has a variety of vineyards that are worth visiting if you enjoy the
odd glass of vino, delicious food and a stunning setting. You can either join a
wine tasting tour or do an
independent trip to one of the many vineyards in the city. From the
family-owned Soljans in Kumeu, Babich
Wines in Henderson to Stoneyridge
on Waiheke Island and Turanga Estate in Whitford, there are plenty of vineyards
around the city for you to sample the seasonal wines.
City of Sails is a haven for beach-lovers. All year round you can enjoy the
sights, walks and people-watching at many of Auckland's beaches. The busiest
are Mission Bay, Takapuna and Eastern Beach, but that doesn't mean you can't go
there. However, if you prefer a more peaceful walk or picnic, try Maraetai
Beach, Pt Chevalier and smaller more intimate beaches like Cockle Bay, which
are child-friendly with parks and trees for shade.