Auckland is the largest city in New Zealand and largest Polynesian city but at the same time is one of the least densely populated cities in the world with only 1.5 million inhabitants. Many visitors only stay in the city long enough in order to observe and attend key sights and attractions offered by this amazing city. Museums, fashionable suburbs, wild and desolated surf beaches, Auckland has it all.
People of Auckland
One of the things that makes Auckland so special is vibrant mix of cultures. From the first Māori waka (canoes) and colonial ships, Auckland has attracted people of many cultures from far and wide.And this diversity reflected in cuisine, festivals, art and music, your experience here becomes all the more exciting.
Climate and Weather
Enjoy Auckland in any season – the region has a warm coastal climate without extremes of temperature. Auckland’s summer is from December to February, autumn is from March to May, winter is from June to August and spring is from September to November.
Northland Thrusting 350km from Auckland into the subtropical north, Northland separates the Pacific Ocean from the Tasman Sea. Between locals the area is known as “Winterless North” with citrus tees, avocado plantations, vineyards, aquamarine waters, calm and safe beaches.Beyond Auckland’s extended suburbs, on the east shore, is the rural Matakana Coast that is popular with yachts, circumnavigating Kawau Island and snorkelers exploring the underwater world of the Goat Island Marine Reserve. If you are looking a place to dive then Poor Knights Island, one of the world’s premier place to dive with a multitude of unique dives around the island. Bay of Islands is a perfect place for cruising, diving and swimming (sometimes even with dolphins).
Originally, New Zealand was settled by Polynesians from Eastern Polynesia. The most current evidence suggests that the initial settlement of New Zealand happened around 1280 CE. The descendants of these settlers became known as the Maori, forming a distinct culture of their own.
Early contact period
The first Europeans who reached New Zealand were Able Tasman Dutch explorer with his team. Tasman sketched sections of the two west coasts of the island. He named them Staten Landt but in 1645 Dutch cartographers changed the name to Nova Zeelandia. More than 100 years after, the island was visited by James Cook who Anglicised the name of the island to New Zealandia. During 19th century European settlement was increasing, establishing large number of trading stations.
In 1832 the British government appointed James Busby as an Official Resident who encouraged Maori chiefs to assert their sovereignty and sign the Declaration of Independence in 1835.Busby was not provided with legal authority or military support and was thus ineffective in controlling the European population.
In 1880s population of New Zealand grew rapidly, primarily due to settlers coming from Britain. First, New Zealand was administered as a part of Australian colony of New South Wales but in 1841, New Zealand became an independent colony. The country has established central and provincial government and gained some self-government measures.
Dominion and Realm
On the 1891 National Australian Convention in Sydney, New Zealand expressed its interest in joining the Federation of the Australian colonies. However, interest in the proposed Australian Federation faded and New Zealand decided against joining the Commonwealth of Australia. Instead it changed from being a colony to a separate “dominion” in 1907 that is equivalent in status to Australia and Canada.
Between 1984-1990 the Labour Government launched a major policy that resulted in radical reforms and reduce the role of government significantly. A political scientist reports: “Between 1984 and 1993, New Zealand underwent radical economic reform, moving from what had probably been the most protected, regulated and state-dominated system of any capitalist democracy to an extreme position at the open, competitive, free-market end of the spectrum.”
Golf in Auckland Auckland can be seen as an ideal spot for a golf as it offers a great mix of costal as well as inland courses, where everyone will be able to find a perfect round for own abilities. If you are looking for personalized golf tour, then Golf Vacations can plan and organize it for you. If you are looking for unique experience, then visit Titirangi Golf Club that is ranked as one New Zealand’s top courses and is the only in the country designed by Dr Alister MacKenzie. His designs are well known for their sensitivity to the nature of the original site. Moreover, MacKenzie is admired for making holes that offers and ideal balance between risk and reward. Another popular golf club is Gulf Harbour County Club. It is rated as one of the terrific courses that builds the gold experience slowly across the course of round. It offers outstanding finishing holes, spectacular ocean views and rolling terrain.
Shopping precincts and malls in Auckland
Shopping in Auckland is a must while you are in this amazing city. Auckland offer extensive range of shopping precincts with world-class collection of famous designer boutiques. While in the city, make sure that you visit the Chancery and High Street that offer high fashion boutiques and delicious eateries. Queen Street is another fashionable precinct that offers range of New Zealand luxury stores as well as international brands.If you want to purchase some gifts, books, art, jewelry, antiques or find something special then head to Devonport. You can get there by car or ferry.
Restaurants in Auckland
Try most prominent and award wining restaurants in Auckland that offer top level food. One of them is Andiamo that is located on the vibrant Jervois Road in suburban Herne Bay. The restaurant has established a reputation for fine food, sourcing the best available seasonal produce, which is prepared and cooked in a modern bistro style highlighting the natural flavours. Another prominent place is DeBretts Kitchen. It nestled in artful surroundings in the heart of Hotel DeBrett bringing something fresh and original to dining in the Auckland CBD. Another well-known restaurant with number of awards is Soul Bar and Bistro is located in the heart of Auckland. It serves the finest, freshest local food with an emphasis in seafood. Another famous and prestigious place is Te Whau Vineyard Restaurant. It offers one of the best views in Waiheke. The restaurant is open not only for meals but also for wine testing. You will be able to try high quality NZ cuisine as well as classic NZ wines.
Lord of the Rings Tour
Try an exciting and interesting journey where you will be able to immerse yourself in the real Middle -earth. Take a guide who will bring you through Habbiton movie set. You will be able to learn stories and special things that happened during filming. You can visit Hobbit holes, the Green Dragon Inn, the Mill and other structures. On the way to the Shire, you will also be able to enjoy a scenic drive through rolling hills and unique New Zealand towns.
Wineries in Auckland
Auckland is known for its four wine regions that are Matakana, Kumeu, Clevedon Hills and Waiheke Island. Consequently, while in Auckland, visit some of wineries is a must. You will be able to enjoy local wine tasting, delicious food and gorgeous landscape with breathtaking views.
Auckland offers 48 volcanic cones. New Zealand is a part of the “Ring of Fire” that extends around the edge of the Pacific Ocean, where a large proportion of the Earth’s volcanic eruptions occur. You will be able to enjoy no only a unique landscape but also breathtaking views. Moreover, you can have a picnic or a leisure stroll, as many of volcanoes are also home to lush parklands.
Parnell in Auckland
Village of Parnell is the historic and charming place that is full of award winning restaurants, cafes and bars. Parnell is a perfect place for relax or dinner. It offers authentic restaurants with superb meal. Try one of the best restaurants such as Non Solo Pizzam Portofino or Antoine’s. If you are looking for an indulgent dessert after you dinner then head to the Chocolate Boutique or Mövenpick.
Britomart in Auckland
Located in the heart of downtown, it is a popular precinct for nightlife in this beautiful city. It offers a wide selection of new restaurants and bars. Enjoy a live music and amazing decor at Mexico or Ortolana or try unique cocktails at Britomart Country Club, Tyler Street Garage or Northern Steamship Co, to continue your night head to 1885. Moreover, this area is not only popular for its nightlife but also for a liveliest shopping with a lot of designers’ boutiques. If you are looking for glitz and glamour of top local and international designer stores then head to Newmarket. Newmarket truly has a status of fashion capital of New Zealand. This area is well known for its elegant eateries as well.
Ponsonsby in Auckland
Ponsonsby Road is a well-known place for its stylish and chick bars, restaurants and clubs. Known as Auckland’s hippest strip. There you can enjoy a live music at Grand Central and the Crib or relax with cocktails and the most fashionable people in town at SPQR or Longroom.
Viaduct Harbour in Auckland
Viaduct Harbour is a vibrant area and is great for eating or partying. There you will have a selection of more than 30 beautiful bars and restaurants. You will be able to enjoy a classic Auckland nightlife, fantastic views over Euro or Kermadecas as well as great meal. Visit the most popular bars such as Soul or Goldfinch or if you are enjoying dancing then head to Snapdragon or Spy Bar.