Imagine an urban environment where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking trails and a dozen enchanted holiday islands. Add a sunny climate, a background rhythm of Polynesian culture and a passion for outstanding food, wine and shopping "“ you're beginning to get the picture of Auckland.
In the Maori language, Auckland is known as Tamaki-Makau-Rau "“ 'the maiden with a hundred lovers'. It earned this name because it was a region coveted by many tribes.
Auckland's blend of harbour, islands, Polynesian culture and modern city environment has created a lifestyle ranked amongst the best in the world.
The natural assets of Auckland have made it a dream destination for all kinds of travellers, from doing-it-on-the-cheap backpackers to cost-is-no-issue super yacht owners.

Key Features
City at the edge of the ocean:Auckland is New Zealand's largest city. Half urban and half marine, it's a cosmopolitan experience wrapped up in a fascinating water world that's dotted with more than 50 islands.

Thirty minutes to anywhere: In just half an hour you can be almost anywhere – sailing to an island, trekking through a rainforest, picnicking on a volcano, sampling wines at a vineyard or wandering a wild, black sand surf beach.

Multicultural flavour: A diverse range of cultures adds flavour and interest to the city's style of life. As a result, Auckland has perfected a style of cuisine called 'Pacific Rim', which blends Asian and Pacific flavours.

Key Tips
Auckland has the largest international airport in New Zealand. Two domestic terminals allow frequent and accessible flights throughout the country.
Auckland is on four touring routes "“ Twin Coast Discovery, Pacific Coast Highway, Thermal Explorer and the Great New Zealand Touring Route.
The Auckland region includes four cities – Auckland, Manukau, North Shore and Waitakere; and three districts – Franklin, Rodney and Papakura.
There are 12 i-SITE Visitor Information Centres around the region. They provide impartial and comprehensive information, as well as reservation services.

Don’t Miss
The islands of the Hauraki Gulf: The Hauraki Gulf, on the doorstep of Auckland city, is home to a multitude of remarkable islands.

Walk to the summit of Rangitoto, the black lava volcanic island in the middle of the inner Hauraki Gulf
Enjoy wine tasting and beachcombing on Waiheke Island, a half hour ferry ride from the city centre
Sunbathe and swim at Motuihe Island
Discover the historic Mansion House on Kawau Island – once the home of Governor George Grey
Visit the wildlife sanctuary on Tiritiri Matangi. The island is home to many endangered birds, including the extremely rare Takahe
Experience a wilderness adventure on Great Barrier Island – tracks lead to secluded natural hot springs and historic kauri dams
Rangitoto Island is a famous Auckland landmark and a great day trip destination.

Entertainment on the water: From central Auckland you can be on the water in a matter of minutes.

Enjoy a cruise on a classic yacht or launch. Charter your own yacht if you have sailing skills
Meet the local marine mammals. Auckland’s Dolphin Explorer conducts daily marine mammal eco-safaris, finding common and bottlenose dolphins, Brydes whales and orca in Auckland’s magnificent Hauraki Gulf Marine Park
Experience the thrill of sailing on a genuine America’s Cup racing yacht – you can participate as much or as little as you desire
Take the ferry across to Devonport and enjoy a café lunch and a spot of shopping
Hire a kayak and join an evening paddle to Rangitoto Island

Action in the outdoors: The Auckland region has 22 conservation parks, providing endless scope for outdoor activities.

Go canyoning in the Waitakere Ranges. It’s an activity that includes abseiling, swimming and rock slides
Hike through the rainforest and hug the giant kauri trees. Trail maps are available at the Arataki Visitors Centre
Have a four-wheel drive motorbike adventure in Woodhill Forest
Play a round of golf at Formosa Country Club or Gulf Harbour
Sky dive at Waiheke Island. See the Hauraki Gulf from the air, strapped to the back of a professional tandem instructor
Climb over the Auckland Harbour Bridge or bungy off the edge
Experience the thrill of Sky Jump from the Sky Tower – 192 metres of cable-controlled base jump
Sky Tower also gives you the chance to do the Vertigo Climb – up the mast of the tower to 300 metres above sea level

History, art and culture: Discover the fascinating history and culture of Auckland.

Auckland War Memorial Museum is the custodian of the finest and most important collection of Maori treasures, or taonga, in the world
Down at the Viaduct Basin, the New Zealand National Maritime Museum showcases New Zealand’s seafaring history
Howick Historical Village recreates the early European settlement of Auckland
Auckland City Art Gallery houses a comprehensive collection of significant New Zealand and international art
Otara Market is the largest Maori and Polynesian market in the world. You’ll find island-style floral print fabrics, Maori carvings and all kinds of tropical fruit and vegetables. It’s an amazing cultural experience

All kinds of family fun: Auckland has attractions that appeal to all ages.

The Sky Tower experience is a vertical ride to total amazement. On the viewing platforms, you’ll find the latest in interactive technology
Kelly Tarlton’s Antarctic Encounter & Underwater World gets you up close and personal with sharks and penguins
Daily Maori cultural performances at the Auckland Museum include a welcome dance, poi dance, stick game, weaponry display and haka
Catch the ferry to Devonport and explore the WWII tunnels and gun emplacements in North Head
Auckland Zoo is always fun -150 species, 500 animals. Zoo encounters, presented by zoo keepers, give you the opportunity to come eye to eye with some amazing cretures
Ride the water slides at Waiwera Thermal Resort or Parakai hot springs
Have a thrilling day at Rainbows End Adventure Park in Manukau City. Plummet on the Fear Fall, spiral on the roller coaster and zoom down the log flume
SheepWorld Farm and Nature Park promises a close encounter with farm animals

Beyond the city zone: The Auckland region offers a wide variety of experiences.

Take a self guided tour of Auckland’s award-winning wineries. Aim for Matakana, Kumeu, Henderson or Waiheke Island
Explore the wild west coast beaches of Muriwai, Bethells, Piha and Karekare – black sand and soulful surf
Discover Clevedon valley, for country crafts, gardens and boutique wineries
Drive north to Waiwera Thermal Resort for a dip in the hot pools or a relaxing massage
Take your snorkelling gear to Goat Island Marine Reserve – the fish are incredibly friendly

NewZealand.com