The most populous city in New Zealand, Auckland is nicknamed as the “City of Sails”. Auckland has everything for everyone, It has pristine beaches, islands if you just want to sit back and relax, for adrenaline junkies it offers activities like sky jumping, surfing, bungee jumping and much more. If you love to be in nature than among Auckland is home to beautiful waterfalls, places like the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park Islands and Waitomo Glowworm Caves. It is also home to many galleries, museums, many libraries, live music venues, beautiful parks and memorials. On this list, we are mentioning the 10 Best Things To Do In Auckland and more.
1. Hauraki Gulf & Islands-
Rangitoto Island, Waiheke Island, Tiritiri Matangi, the Great Barrier Island and more beautiful islands can be found in the Hauraki Gulf. All of these islands offer variant kind of activities. Such as the Motuihe Island is home to some of the most spectacular beaches. The sparkling water of Hauraki Island offers countless water activities and island adventures. There are over 50 islands within the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.
Rangitoto Island is known for its volcanoes. You can join a Volcanic Explorer Tour to explore the region. Waiheke Island is the second largest of the Gulf offering various kind of activities from zip-lining and jet skiing to tasting the Waiheke Island wine to exploring the beaches to reserves. The Tiritiri Matangi Island is best known for the Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary home to rare birds & endangered reptiles. The Great Barrier Island is famous for being the first island to receive International Dark Sky Sanctuary status in the world.
2. Cornwall Park & One Tree Hill:
Located near the heart of Auckland, Cornwall Park and the Maungakiekie pa or the hill of One Tree Hill are popular among runners, bikers & picnickers. The park features a cafe & creamery with specimen trees, beautiful garden beds, panoramic summit views. Auckland is home to many more beautiful and significant parks. The Auckland Domain is the oldest park in the city. Albert Park is known for its historic significance trees with flowerbeds. Located in Wynyard Quarter, Silo Park is known for its striking views across to Westhaven Marina. Parry Kauri Park is a beautiful place to spend a day and also visit the Shakespear Regional Park and the Michael Joseph Savage Memorial Park.
3. Mount Eden & Goat Island :
Dominated by Maungawhau, a volcanic peak, Mount Eden is one of the most striking features in Auckland. You can enjoy the view of the Hauraki Gulf by following the hiking and jogging trails. You will find bookshops and vintage clothes stores, trendy cafes and wine bar near the region. Cricket matches are also often held here. The world-famous Goat island within Cape Rodney-Okakari Point Marine Reserve is known for offering activities including snorkelling, diving, clear kayaking, hiking and more. It was created in 1975 and officially opened in 1977 and it’s a part of New Zealand’s first marine reserve.
4. Waitakere Ranges Regional Park:
Pristine bush, growing native wildlife and rugged black sand surf beaches make Waitakere Ranges Regional Park one of the best places to visit in Auckland. There are many trails in the park leading up to picture-perfect scenarios such as the Karekare Falls. Although because of the spread of kauri dieback disease some of the trails have been closed. The beaches Whatipu, Karekare, Piha, Bethells and Muriwai are some of the best you will find. The huge cliff-top gannet colony at Muriwai and the Lion Rock are some of its best attractions. You can also explore nearby places including Manukau Heads Lighthouse and Bastion Point from here.
5. Waitomo Glowworm Caves & Hobbiton Movie Set Tours:
Located in Waitomo on the North Island of New Zealand, taking a Waitomo Glowworm Cave Express Tour is one of the best things to do in Auckland. The Arachnocampa luminosa, a glowworm species, creates a spectacular sight to observe in the cave. The dark cave gets illuminated with blue light looking similar to a sky full of bright sparkling stars. The Ruakuri Cave and the Aranui Cave are the other caves to explore here.
The Hobbiton Movie Set in Matamata is one of the most popular places to visit in the city. You can see the real Middle-earth yourself and see where The Lord of the Rings film trilogy and The Hobbit film were shot. Also, do visit the Otuataua Stonefields.
6. Auckland Zoo & Auckland Botanic Gardens:
If you got kids with you then these are two of the best places to visit in the city. The Auckland Zoo is home to 130+ species & nearly 900 animals. It is the largest zoo in New Zealand and worth exploring. You can also visit the Western Springs park from here. The Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manurewa is known for its many flowers, plants & trees, plus event venues & a cafe. The beautiful garden is a delight to explore.
7. Explore The Beaches Of East Coast and West Coast:
The West Coast of New Zealand is where the Tasman Sea meets long stretching black sand beaches. The Muriwai Beach featuring clifftops and gannet colonies and the beach Piha known for surfing are two of the most popular ones. There are also many waterfalls to explore too. The East Coast has long stretches of white sandy shores at Omaha, Tāwharanui, and Pakiri. These beaches are less crowded and perfect to just sit back and relax while enjoying the view.
8. Explore The Galleries & Museums:
Auckland has many great museums and galleries telling the story of the country and showing amazing art. The Auckland War Memorial Museum is one of the most important museums and war memorials in the country. The New Zealand Maritime Museum showcases the country’s seafaring history through exhibits & sailing trips. The Museum of Transport and Technology is another great museum to explore. The Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki has the most extensive collection of national and international art including Maori works. Also, visit the theatre, The Civic and the Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium for a fun trip.
9. Devonport & North Head:
Devonport is a laid back bayside village where you can easily spend more than just a few hours. The upscale cafes, seafood restaurants, Kiwi pubs, small shops, and beaches make it a popular destination in the city. The volcanic cone of North Head is nearby the village and easily accessible. Its harbour views and underground army tunnels are very popular among tourists. You can also go on an adventure on Mount Victoria from here. Also, visit the town of Matakana and the Mission Bay from here.
10. Sky Tower & Viaduct harbour:
The Sky Tower & Viaduct harbour has become an identity for Auckland. The 328 metres tower not only offers sweeping views but also activities such as Sky Walking and Sky Jumping. The former commercial harbour on the Auckland waterfront, Viaduct Harbour is a must-visit in the city. There are over 30 bars and restaurants to enjoy yourself. You can also go on helicopter rides or on yachts or join a wine train tour in the city. You can visit the Waitemata Harbour or go shopping in Queen Street. Auckland has around 55 libraries and great places to enjoy live music.