Auckland New Zealand
City of sails, culture and sights
With a population of around 1.5 million, New Zealand’s largest city is a gateway to the rest of the country, welcoming about 70% of all visitors. With its vast multicultural mix of people, it’s a vibrant, inherently cultural city, home to museums, galleries, festivals and numerous other events reflecting and celebrating its diversity. The only city in the world built on an active volcanic field, Auckland is dotted with 50 volcanoes, which make for exciting yet safe vantage points from which to view the city and its yacht-speckled harbour. With beaches on both the west and east coasts, it’s a tropical summer destination that also holds its own in winter. Beyond that, it’s a terrific jumping-off point for campervan expedition designed to take in the splendours of the north or of Coromandel Peninsula to the east.
Book a flight to Auckland
When to go
Auckland’s subtropical climate is affected by the close proximity of its west and east coasts, which are less than 2km apart at the narrowest point. The result is warm, humid summers and mild, damp winters. Summer begins around Christmas and lasts until March, with winter typically at its worst around July and August. This means wind and rain, with occasional hailstorms.
A small city with big aspirations, Auckland boasts music festivals such as Laneway in January and Splore in February, Pacific culture festival Pasifika in March, the Writers Festival in May, a biennial arts festival in odd-numbered years and the must-see New Zealand International Film Festival, which takes place each July. The latter is held at the atmospheric Civic Theatre, which was built in the Roaring 20s and must be seen to be believed.
Flying with Jetstar
Auckland is one of Jetstar’s major hubs, with numerous flights a day arriving from and departing for Wellington, Napier*, Palmerston North^, New Plymouth^, Nelson*, Christchurch, Queenstown, Dunedin, Gold Coast, Melbourne and Sydney. There are also flights linking the city to other destinations in Australia, South-East Asia, Japan and Hawaii.
* Operated by Eastern Australia Airlines for Jetstar Airways from 1 December 2015.
^ Operated by Eastern Australia Airlines for Jetstar Airways from 1 February 2016.
From 22 March 2016 Jetstar Airways will fly direct from Rarotonga, Cook Islands to Auckland, subject to Government and Regulatory approval.
Find cheap flights to Auckland
The red City Link bus serves the CBD every 7-10 minutes. The maximum fare is 50 cents. The bright green Inner Link bus serves the CBD and inner-city suburbs. The maximum fare is NZ$1.90. The bright orange Outer Link bus serves the universities, some inner-city and western suburbs, plus the Museum of Transport & Technology and the Zoo. Trains serve East, South and West Auckland from Britomart Station CBD. Ferries operate between the CBD and Birkenhead, Bayswater, Stanley Bay, Devonport and Half Moon Bay. HOP passes are available for train, bus and ferry services.
Travel time 30 minutes
Taxi Approx NZ$90
Airbus Express every 10-30 minutes. One-way: NZ$16 (adult), NZ$6 (child), return: NZ$28 (adult), NZ$12 (child). Journey takes 45-60 minutes
380 Airporter Bus Service to Manukau City Centre, every 30 minutes. One-way: NZ$4.50. Journey takes 25-40 minutes.