Lives in Queenstown, New Zealand
Since Feb 2015
35-49 year old female
I am an Australian/ Canadian/ New Zealander who has spent equal time in each country (and has a crazy accent as a result). My professional background was in PR...but that is going back a few years now! My passions? Really good food, books, art, hiking, foreign films & anything French (the more I can combine of these at once the better). I moved from Sydney Australia to marry a Kiwi and live amongst the mountains in Queenstown, New Zealand on the proviso that we would take frequent 'city fix' trips. It's an idyllic life in this beautiful resort town- I'm not complaining- but I am a city girl at heart. 14 years on, three daughters later, we are fortunate enough to be able to make regular visits to Auckland. Whether it's for work, dining, shopping, sporting events, shows, family catch-ups, taking romantic couple time out from the kids, or an escape with my girlfriends, I seem to find myself in this sparkling city all the time and know it intimately.
Marinas, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Adrenaline & Extreme Tours, Climbing Tours
Piers & Boardwalks, Scenic Walking Areas
Nature & Wildlife Areas, Ballets, Aquariums
History Museums, Military Museums, Speciality Museums
Observation Decks & Towers, Points of Interest & Landmarks
Formerly a busy commercial port, Viaduct Harbour is still a bustling place, although now the activity has a glitzier edge. Its restaurants and bars keep things abuzz day and night, making this a perfect spot to kick off your Auckland adventures. Enjoy breakfast amongst the yachts at a cute cafe, and then walk from the ferry terminal building right through the marina and over the Wynyard Crossing Bridge to the new North Wharf — this is the launching point for water activities.
Auckland's iconic harbor bridge is home to a few activities that will get your adrenaline pumping. Take the guided tour along the top line of the bridge for 360-degree views of Auckland landmarks. If you dare, there's bungee jumping available from the underside of the bridge too. New Zealand's not called the adventure capital of the world for nothing!
This vibrant new eco-friendly precinct is connected to the Viaduct Harbor by the Wynyard Crossing. At North Wharf, locals and visitors can soak up the action of a working wharf while enjoying the industrial-chic cafes and restaurants that have set up shop here. Take a stroll and then enjoy a tasty meal or treat in the sun.
Enjoy interactive activities for the whole family at Kelly Tarlton's aquarium, where you can learn about Antarctica, visit the Stingray Bay, see sharks up close, and check out the Shipwreck Shores discovery zone. I recommend the Penguin Discovery Experience — my kids love getting to know the large penguins in the snow.
For a few hours of culture, immerse yourself in the largest visual arts center in NZ. There's always something going on here, including talks, exhibitions, children's activities, and performances. Plus, if you sneak a peek in the gift shop, you won't be disappointed.
So much awaits you at Auckland Museum, including world-class exhibitions, interactive displays, kids' activities, a war memorial, and a unique collection of Maori and Pacific Island relics. School yourself on the people, flora and fauna, and the history of New Zealand.
Auckland Domain is so peaceful that it's hard to believe the hustle and bustle of the city is just over the fence! Take some time to wander around these pristine gardens and ponds, or maybe even sit for a spell.
This shopping, wining, and dining precinct is near the Auckland Museum and handy for the inner city. At Newmarket, it's all about the back lanes for the best restaurants, bars, and boutiques. If upmarket Nuffield Street isn't in your budget, then head to Morrow or Teed Street for some chic finds.
Watching the sunset from Sky Tower has got to be one of Auckland's most satisfying things to do. It's a good way to get your bearings and recap what you've experienced, or to chart your course for the following day. For the cashed-up foodie or to celebrate a special occasion, The Sugar Club's award-winning 360-degree revolving restaurant is divine.
Finish your day with a south-of-the-border-style cocktail or beer in this buzzy local haunt. What MEXICO Britomart lacks in size, it makes up for in cool! There's also a restaurant attached if you're grabbing a bite for dinner.
This neighborhood close to the city has a hip, urban vibe. Historic properties mix comfortably with buzzing nightlife, bohemian boutiques, and dazzling young trendsetters. Start at Ponsonby Central, wander around the shops, and finish with dinner in one of the superb restaurants that glow at night.
This is the ideal day trip from Auckland. For starters, taking the 35-minute ferry ride from the city to Waiheke Island doubles as a harbor cruise across the Hauraki Gulf. The island is a picturesque mix of vineyards, olive groves, white sandy beaches, and green hills — the vibe is a happy blend of the bohemian and the moneyed — and there is a wonderful arts culture alive here as a result. The quaint town of Oneroa has a street of little shops and great cafes. The area is known for its wine, so lunch at one of the vineyards is a must do. For kids, the beach at Little Oneroa is relatively sheltered and there is a shaded playground too. Plus, it also has the best little gourmet wood-fired pizza spot, Dragonfired, which churns out pizza, calzone, and simple Mediterranean meals like the Polenta Plate from a black trailer. After a full day, return home on the boat at sunset.
The glittering expansive vista back to Auckland is just one of the reasons to visit Cable Bay. The award-winning wine, superb restaurant, and installation art are some of the others! The last time we were here, relaxing on bean bags in the sun, a helicopter dropped off some Argentinian polo players on the front lawn — it's just that kind of place!
Indulge in artfully-created, modern Japanese cuisine that's fresh, healthy, and easy on the eye. Set in a reclaimed warehouse that manages to still feel cozy, Ebisu is a well-priced, medium to high-end dinner spot in the popular Britomart Area.