When planning a trip to New Zealand, you’re in for a treat with its picturesque landscapes and friendly locals. And no visit would be complete without exploring Auckland, the largest and most populated city in the country, despite not being the capital. Don’t miss out on our Auckland Travel Guide for the best tips and insights on making the most of your visit. If you find yourself in Auckland and are desperate to learn as much about the city as possible, there are a few things you should do if you want to truly experience city life and its spirit.

Adrenalin rush

Adrenalin junkies will be glad to hear that something is exciting for them to try out. The landmark building in the very heart of Auckland is the Sky Tower, a large needle-like structure in the heart of the city that towers over everything else. Observation decks will give you a chance to get magnificent panoramic views, but there is more that can be done if you’re adventurous. For a fee, you could walk up to the viewing platforms and have a drink at one of the bars there. If you’re feeling even more adventurous, you could do the “Sky Jump” – plummet to the ground from nearly 200m height attached to a guiding line!

Wine and dine like a boss

New Zealand’s food scene is incredibly versatile and, if you’re hoping to find nice places to have a good meal and grab a drink, there are some places people just love. The city might be located around two large harbours, yet it is the Viaduct Harbor that became one of the hottest places in all of Auckland. There are many great restaurants you can go to and try some of their amazing dishes. There are bars with rooftops you can watch the harbor from and a few places for meat lovers, too. If you’re looking for something truly special, Sidart won Restaurant Of The Year in 2018, so it would be a perfect place to celebrate a special occasion.

Must-see places

If you’re feeling adventurous and don’t have too much time on your hands, you might want to start exploring the city straight from the airport. Just a few miles away from the airport is Villa Maria Estate which offers wine tasting, tours, and lunch. You can find car rental at Auckland airport and drive to the famous Waitakere Ranges Regional Park and see breathtakingly beautiful waterfalls and unique black sand beaches. Use the opportunity to drive a bit further away and visit Waiheke Island, which happens to be the second largest as well as the most populated island in the Hauraki Gulf.

Learn about Maori culture

One of the main reasons why people decide to visit New Zealand in the first place is to learn more about Maori culture and its people. You no longer have to sit in a classroom or attend a boring lecture if you want to learn about something that interests you: there are different walking tours you can sign up for and use the opportunity to see beautiful landscapes while learning about the history and culture of Maori. There is a wonderful tour named “Mount Eden Tour” where you’ll get a chance to find out just what is it that makes dormant volcano Maungawhau so significant.

Feast your eyes on whales

If you’re one of the people who find joy in getting to see free wild animals on your travels, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to go whale watching while in Auckland. There are a lot of whales and dolphins in the area around Auckland, and you can make a field trip out of it. You can book a tour in advance, or you can do it on the spot when you get to the harbor side. If you’re lucky, you will also spot New Zealand fur seals, a pygmy blue whale, manta rays, sharks, and even turtles.

Because it’s often referred to as “the gateway to New Zealand”, Auckland has become quite a popular tourist destination over the years. With its big airport that has many international flights, it’s not a surprise why so many people choose to make it their starting point on their tour through the country. By following our tips and suggestions, you will get a feel for the city and, hopefully, fall in love with it.

If you’re gearing up for your New Zealand adventure, don’t forget to check out our Auckland Travel Guide for essential tips and recommendations. Before you go, delve into some fascinating facts about New Zealand that will enrich your journey. Explore these insights here at House of Coco: Interesting Facts About New Zealand Worth Knowing Before Planning a Visit.


Northern girl Laura is the epitome of a true entrepreneur. Laura’s spirit for adventure and passion for people blaze through House of Coco. She founded House of Coco in 2014 and has grown it in to an internationally recognised brand whilst having a lot of fun along the way. Travel is in her DNA and she is a true visionary and a global citizen.

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