Getting Oriented

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Getting Oriented

The drive from the airport, once you pass some industrial parks, presents the standard image of New Zealand—clean and green with the landscape dominated by the city's 50 or so volcanic hills, many set aside as parks with their grassy flanks shorn by sheep. The Auckland region is geographically diverse, and Auckland City sits on an isthmus between the Waitemata (to the east) and Manukau Harbour (to the southwest). At its narrowest point the isthmus is only 1 km (½ mi) wide. The Orakei and Panmure basins, which are east of the city, are actually large craters that have been invaded by the sea. Like many parts of the country, there's plenty of outdoor activity on the easy rolling terrain outside the central suburban areas and in some of the city's big parks. The many islands of the Hauraki Gulf, off Auckland's east coast, give the chance to explore by sea.

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