The city has also acquired a unique flavor and cultural confidence in the recent years. While the city is afflicted by traffic snarls just like any other mega city but its expanding art scene, thriving food and fashion industry makes a walk in the Central business district an attractive relaxed and outdoor fun. Auckland Art Gallery captures the influence of the indigenous Maori culture on visual art. You can wander into the vintage shopping malls and souvenir and bookstores or upscale boutiques situated at Britomart waterfront.
Beyond its city limits there is unspoiled nature. Long Bay regional park is a serene nature trail with stunning beaches. It is a famous spot for surfing, jogging, and building sand castles with your kids. If you are lucky you may also be greeted by sea creatures who wash ashore unannounced.
After tasting success as one of the most sought-after destinations in the world and attracting millions of International visitors, the locals seem to be fatigued with tourists. The country is now mulling to impose a special tax on the tourists from the middle of the next year to curtail the pressure on its local infrastructure, its people and the environment.
For many of the countries that find happiness a continual challenge, nature crazy Kiwis are a laid back, happy and contended lot. Rudyard Kipling once famously described Auckland in his poem as Last, loneliest, loveliest, exquisite, apart. Need one say any more?
Things to do:
Auckland Museum is an essential viewing with fascinating display of Maori artefacts. Visit New Zealand Maritime Museum to get a glimpse of its maritime history. Wander in the spacious Auckland Zoo with kids and befriend its residents. Climb up the Mount Eden, the highest volcanic cone to enjoy a spectacular view of the harbors and Auckland city. Auckland Art Gallery remains the top choice for those interested in NZ art.
Cable Bay is a modern restaurant serving acclaimed food with beautiful views of the surrounding. Odette's is a hectic place with loyal visitors serving unique and eclectic cuisine. Giraffe is a stylish restaurant opened by one of the NZs most well-known chefs. It serves local and seasonal delicacies. Revive is an economical vegetarian daily meal restaurant.
Shops in Auckland cater for the needs of most shoppers. If you are searching for local items you should consider picking up pure wool products, such as hand-knotted sweaters or cuddly toys made from possum fur. Jewelry, pottery, glass and other crafts are of high standard and are worth buying. Queen street is the major commercial center. New market is Auckland's prime shopping area. Shops along Broadway include shops that specialize in luxury goods, clothing, art, ceramics and glassware. Royal Jewellery Studio offers Maori designs such as pounamu (greenstone) jewelry. Aotea Community Art Gallery sells paintings, sculpture, handmade soap and local honey. Zambesi and Karen Walker is top end fashion label for clothing
Hotel DeBrett is luxury boutique hotel housed in an iconic building and a premier meeting place of the city in the yore with exquisitely designed rooms. You can also check out Airbnb website for a range of stay options.
Malaysia airlines, Singapore airlines and Emirates provide good connectivity options to Auckland. You can check out their respective websites for more information.