With mighty Rangitoto Island overlooking the picturesque Hauraki Harbour, the City of Sails is a stunning natural playground waiting to be explored. And no matter your age, or your budget, Auckland has plenty of hot spots and entertainment to enjoy. With so much on offer, it’s easy to get into the groove of café hopping, beach walks, hill climbs and nightlife.

Where to stay in Auckland 

If you’re arriving via the Northern Explorer train, you’ll arrive at The Strand Station, which has plenty of great accommodation options close by. Here are a couple of easy access hotels, closely situated to all the best activities in Auckland. 

Cordis Auckland is a stylish and incredibly accommodating hotel in Auckland’s CBD. With a heated outdoor pool and Jacuzzi, it’s the ideal spot to unwind after getting amongst the hustle and bustle of the city.  

Parnell Pines Hotel is perfect if you’re after a more affordable option, without compromising on luxury. Surrounded by delicious eateries and only a short stroll to the Auckland Rose Gardens, it’s a great spot to potter around. 

And if you want to stay a little further from the CBD, but still close enough to the action, why not check out some apartments on Airbnb in beautiful Mission Bay? With a range of prices and sizes, there’s plenty on there that tick all the right boxes.

Must do Auckland activities

There's so much to do in the 'city of sails' but why not start the day by delving into the history that makes this diverse city so interesting. Then catch a show in the evening to top off a fabulous first day in the big smoke.  Here are a few of the best things to do in Auckland’s CBD.

Auckland War Memorial Museum

Auckland War Memorial Museum tells the story of New Zealand and its people. With unmatched Māori and Pacific collections, and major military records and exhibitions, you’ll leave the Museum informed and humbled by New Zealand’s remarkable history. Plus, it’s situated in the heart of Auckland Domain, where the well-maintained grounds and exotic Winter Gardens are sure to delight.  

Auckland Live

New Zealand’s largest city gets all the best shows. And there’s nothing quite like seeing one live at The Civic. Built in 1929, The Civic has an atmosphere unlike any other theatre. With the Southern Hemisphere, sky-scape floating above and the classical design adorning the walls, whatever show you see will stay with you long after the final applause. Have a look at which shows are on so you can get your tickets well in advance.

The view from the top

If you visit Auckland and don’t take a trip up the Sky Tower, did you even go at all? At 328m high, it’s the city’s defining icon, and has one of the most incredible views of the harbour and other surrounding landmarks. And if you’re feeling extra fancy, dine at Orbit – the Sky Tower’s own 360˚ revolving restaurant. It’s one of the most romantic things to do in Auckland as a couple.

Eat like an Aucklander

Eat like an Aucklander From the many gems along Ponsonby Road, the Fish Market at Wynyard Quarter and the Depot I the CBD, Auckland has an abundance of delicious eateries. But to do it like a local, here are a few of Auckland’s must-try foodie spots.