Auckland, the city built on 48 volcanic conesOctober 25, 2018
Auckland, the main city of New Zealand, located north of the North Island, it can be defined as multicultural and vibrant. Built on 48 inactive and extinct volcanic cones and nestled between two ports that enjoy the Pacific Ocean at its best, the city has an urban environment where all the attractions and walks are 15 or 30 minutes away: beaches, trekking trails and a dozen islands. Although it can be traveled on foot almost entirely, public transport dominated by trains and buses, is timely and simple to use which allows mobilization are greater disadvantages.
View of Auckland, New Zealand (Tourism New Zealand)
In Maori language, the name of Auckland is Tamaki-Makau-Rau, which means “the maiden of the hundred suitors“, Since it is located in a region that could be coveted by many tribes. Somehow the name refers to a current reality, since the quality of life in Auckland is considered one of the best in the world, although in the city live almost two million inhabitants, that is, half of the total population from the country.
Rangitoto, Wahieke and the coast
Geographically, the Auckland region is dotted with 52 volcanic cones that provide panoramic views of the city and are perfect places for a spring or summer picnic. Quiet, those volcanoes have not registered activity for 600 years, and that is why they are a point of attraction for all visitors.
The Rangitoto Island, just 25 minutes by ferry from Auckland, has the most iconic volcano in the city, and is also the best place for birdwatchers.
Also known as “The city of candles”, Auckland lives and enjoys the sea from the surf beaches of the West Coast to the calm waters of the Hauraki Gulf. There is a large collection of calm islands to explore by bike or walking. The most populated is Waiheke Island, only 40 minutes by ferry from the city center. The landscape consists of a picturesque combination of arable land, forest, beaches, vineyards and olive groves.
Waiheke, New Zealand (Tourism New Zealand)
On the coast of the city, the Viaduct port has become a real promenade to observe the city from the sea. There are countless cafes, bars and restaurants that attract tourists and locals during lunch and dinner hours to enjoy this maritime scenery.
But Auckland offers another possibility to enjoy the sea: its newest coastal district is called Wynyard Quarter, and it is not another thing that a district that has gained land to the sea and that in the past was used mainly for port and storage purposes.
Now it has nine restaurants and bars known as North Wharf, a recreational playground, open spaces, a 1.5 km circular tram and a center for corporate events that mainly offer alternatives for companies, but it is advisable to check your schedule because it is usually have exhibitions of the most diverse topics open to the public.
At the top of the tower
The Waitakere mountains, which cross the west of the city, are about 30 minutes from the center and give an environment of waterfalls and several trails to walk. It is the place chosen by those who want to enjoy nature close to the city and start living what has characterized New Zealand since always: the exuberance of its landscapes.
Adventures near Auckland, New Zealand (Tourism New Zealand)
Passing the mountains are the black sand beaches of Piha, Muriwai, Bethells and Karekare, all good options for warm or mild days.
In the heart of Auckland is the Sky Tower, the tallest man-made structure in the Southern Hemisphere, which attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year and was awarded the 2016 Travelers Choice Award. In addition to the views from one of the two observation platforms, the More intrepid visitors can also walk on an outdoor balcony or, directly, jump into the void from 192 meters high: a bungee jumping in the center. The tower also has three culinary experiences: a café, a restaurant and a bar that each night transforms into a disco on the heights.
Ready to walk the heights in the Sky Tower, Auckland, New Zealand (Tourism New Zealand)
The historic Britomart site, in the center of the city, includes several well-preserved blocks of heritage buildings with avant-garde architecture. This revitalized area gives life to the local nightlife scene, and also offers a farmers’ market on Saturdays and some of the best designer shops in New Zealand. The many restaurants, bars and cafés of Britomart are open at all times, and in addition, there is a set of fashion and beauty boutiques that accompany the tour.
Each year, some 16 million tourists visit New Zealand, and almost all of them pass through Auckland, a kind of large “distribution and transport” center. They mostly come from Southeast Asia and India and turn the urban landscape into a cosmopolitan postcard. But the trend is being reversed by connecting direct flights with more and more countries.
The Cloud, events site in Auckland, New Zealand (Tourism New Zealand)
This situation was very well taken advantage of by the big international stores such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton or Swarovski, which set up branches in the center of the city. In addition, the points preferred by tourists include Wynyard Quarter, the port of Viaduct and the Britomart district. But if money is scarce, do not despair: 15 minutes from the city is the shopping center Dress Samart, an outlet that is usually filled with locals.
Auckland is considered one of the five cities with the best quality of life in the world by various economic and tourism institutions. And that is lived and breathed in its streets: a balanced economy, great natural environment, excellent human treatment and high safety indices.
How to get. Air New Zeland flies direct from Buenos Aires to Auckland. Low season (February 15 to December 15) in Economy, costs from US $ 1,252 (www.airnewzealand-ar.com).
Where to stay Three-star hotels, from US $ 70 for a double room. Four stars, from US $ 115. It is suggested to look for accommodation in Queen and Victoria avenues, with good public transport.
Where to find out: www.newzealand.com
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