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Arataki Visitors Centre
The zoo is always a safe bet for a fun day out and Auckland’s zoo is one of the best I’ve been to! You’ll also get to see a real life kiwi (if they’re not hiding!), which makes it all the more worth a visit.
On Auckland’s west coast, which is a bit wilder than the east, this is a beautiful beach popular with surfers and [at certain times of year]… penguins! There is also the giant Lion Rock providing more fantastic views and Kitekite Falls a short walk away for more scenery. We’re hoping to have a beach day when the summer really kicks in and Piha beach is our chosen Auckland beach!
The Sky Tower
The most iconic figure in the Auckland skyline, the Sky Tower offers panoramic views of Auckland and its surroundings. If you have a special occasion, you might want to dine in the revolving restaurant or alternatively… you can do the free fall jump from the top!
The place we call home (and we’re glad we do), Mt Eden is a lovely little suburb with lots of cute little shops and cafés including the famous Circus Circus. Oh and not forgetting the amazing $20 ribs and beer at the pub (De Post) every Wednesday!
The main draw though is the volcano, rewarding a short ~10 minute walk to the summit with amazing 360 views of the city. We recently went up to see the sunset after a lovely sunny day and it was absolutely STUNNING. If you get the opportunity, you should definitely make the time to visit Mt Eden Summit to see a particularly spectacular sunset.
Eden Park – The All Blacks
Keep an eye on the All Blacks fixture list and try to make sure you go to see them play at the national stadium in Mount Eden. The atmosphere will be incredible and it’s not every day you get to watch the World champions!
Shopping in Newmarket
Head to Newmarket just outside of the city centre (definitely walking distance) if you fancy a few more nice restaurants and a much broader range of shopping options!
Auckland Botanic Gardens
If you like gardens and a bit of fresh air, you should enjoy a free day out at the Botanic gardens in Manuwera.
Cornwall Park is one of the nicest parks I’ve ever been to! It’s fantastic on a sunny day, with massive grassy areas to comfortably accommodate the high number of Aucklanders who flock there! There’s a nice restaurant in the grounds as well as a separate ice cream parlour, you can walk amongst the lambs and cows or set up a base and have a barbecue! Perfect cheap day out, especially if there’s a group of you.
Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium
This is on our to do list rather than our done list but it has great reviews and looks like a pretty fun day out, especially if it’s a rainy day.
Eat & Drink at The Viaduct
Auckland’s Viaduct Harbour is a very nice spot in the heart of the city and is definitely the place to go if you fancy an above average bite to eat or a not-so-cheap night out, as it boasts several really nice bars and restaurants.
The Local Beaches
If you’re in Auckland city and fancy a day at the beach but don’t want to travel too far, you really are spoilt for choice. Just 10 minutes East of the CBD is Mission Bay and a little further along will bring you to Saint Heliers Bay, both very nice local beaches. Another option is the beautiful Takapuna beach, a short 15 minute drive across the bridge on Auckland’s North Shore.
We’ve got a couple more months left in Auckland at the time of writing, so we’re hoping this list will be a little longer by then – check back soon!