Lives in auckland
Since Nov 2007
25-34 year old female
Ex Auckland PR girl, travelling the world and blogging from a young kiwi perspective. See more at http://www.passportpacked.com @passport_liz
Observation Decks & Towers, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Points of Interest & Landmarks
Shopping Malls, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Marinas, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Climbing Tours, Adrenaline & Extreme Tours
Military Museums, History Museums, Speciality Museums
Historic Sites, Neighbourhoods, Points of Interest & Landmarks
The Sky Tower is Auckland City’s most iconic building, standing at an impressive 328 meters (over 1000 feet) tall and dominating the skyline. It’s a must-see for all kinds of travelers, with views over the city that never fail to impress. The Sky Tower has three circular public observation levels, each of which give you a stunning 360-degree view of Auckland. Start your day off here, to get a feel for the city and see how far it spreads in every direction.
For an adrenaline rush like no other, combine your visit to the Sky Tower with an extreme Sky Jump or Sky Walk! The Sky Jump lets you jump off Auckland’s highest building — the fastest route to the ground! While I’m too nervous to take that leap, the Sky Walk is something I can handle. This sky-high path tests your courage as you walk around the outside of the tower, 192 meters (630 feet) above the ground, with no handrail or glass to lean on! Both of these activities provide an adventurous start to the day, that will definitely wake you up and snap you out of any lingering jet lag!
Right in the heart of the city, Queen Street is Auckland’s answer to the Golden Mile. Home to the Comedy Club, Historic Civic Theater, and an array of shops, cafes and restaurants, it’s a must-see for all travelers wanting to take on Auckland just like a local. Head down toward Britomart and be sure to explore the arcades coming off Queen Street too, for some truly hidden gems. There’s something for everyone here, with both high street, designer and boutique brands lining both sides of the street. Queen Street also has all your souvenir needs covered, with several tourist shops and information desks on this road.
Recently renovated, the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki, holds the country's most extensive and distinguished collection of New Zealand and international art. The gallery contains almost 15,000 pieces, including works by New Zealand, Māori, Pacific and international artists. The New Zealand collection is a personal favorite of mine, with pieces by Goldie and Colin McCahon standing out as icons in our art heritage.
For lunch like a local, check out cute and quirky Vulcan Lane. This short street offers an array of delicious food options, perfect for a cheap and easy lunch on the go.
The Auckland Viaduct is one of my favorite city areas to wander around. With beautiful bars and restaurants, situated around stunning, picturesque docks, it’s a fabulous place to head to anytime of day. Go for drinks, dinner, or even just dessert — just make sure you eat there at least once! Also be sure to skip over the new moveable bridge, for easy pedestrian access to the nearby Wynyard Quarter area. This newly developed extension has more fabulous restaurants and bars and is also home to the Auckland Dockline Tram.
If you’re interested in sailing, and you’re in the Viaduct Harbor anyway, you should also pop by The America’s Cup Village. Located within the Viaduct Basin, you can check out the original team base site of America’s Cup for 1999-2000, and explore more of New Zealand’s rich maritime history at the nearby Voyager Maritime Museum. If you’re not too interested in boats or sailing, then skip the above and simply enjoy a leisurely walk to admire the incredible boats moored in the area, and do a bit of people-watching.
This has been on my to-do list for a long time, as I keep hearing how amazing it is! If you’ve already jumped off the Sky Tower, you might choose to give this one a miss, but if you’re crazy for adrenaline, then book an afternoon trip up here. The Bridge Climb takes you above Auckland’s biggest and busiest bridge, rewarding you with tremendous views of the city from a unique perspective.
Another great way to spend the afternoon is at the Auckland Museum. Visually stunning both inside and out, the Auckland Museum is the perfect place to learn about New Zealand’s history and unique Maori culture. There’s also a hands-on, creative science area especially for kids, to keep them happy and entertained. Guided tours are available, and there’s a café onsite ideal for afternoon tea.
I thought I’d mention this site because it’s the home of Auckland Museum, so if you’re seeing one of these places, then you’ll see the other by default! The Auckland Domain is the city's oldest park, and also one of the largest. The park sits on the crater of the extinct Pukekawa volcano, and provides vast views out over the harbor toward Rangitoto Island. As well as the Museum, the Domain is also home to the Wintergardens — two beautiful Victorian-style glass houses — a picturesque and popular location for wedding photos.
I’ve included Parnell, as it’s also close to the Auckland Museum, making it a great spot for afternoon tea or dinner. Parnell is Auckland oldest neighborhood and has a great variety of eateries with prices to suit all pockets. The main street features some very quaint architecture and the cathedral at the top of the hill is Auckland’s largest.
If you've still got the time/energy, head up Mount Eden for a yet another unique view of the city. This is a popular tourist spot and is always pretty busy. The road up is closed, so you’ll have to park at the bottom and walk — but it doesn’t take long, and will make for a peaceful end to your day in Auckland.