Auckland

You can get around city center and the suburbs close to the harbor like Ponsonby, Devonport, and Parnell, on foot, by bus, and by ferry. Elsewhere, Auckland is not as easy to explore. The neighborhoods and suburbs sprawl from the Waitemata and Manukau harbors to rural areas, and complicated roads, frequent construction, and heavy traffic can make road travel a challenge. Still it's best to have a car for getting between neighborhoods and some city center sights. What might look like an easy walking distance on a map can turn out to be a 20- to 30-minute hilly trek, and stringing a few of those together can get frustrating.

If you're nervous about driving on the left, especially when you first arrive, purchase a one-day Link Bus Pass that covers the inner-city neighborhoods and central business district (CBD) or, for a circuit of the main sights, a Discovery Pass. Take a bus to get acquainted with the city layout. Getting around Auckland by bus is easy and inexpensive. The region's bus services are coordinated through the Auckland Transport. You can buy electronic Hop cards which can be used on buses, trains and ferries and its website can provide door-to-door information, including bus route numbers, to most places in the greater Auckland area. Timetables are available at most information centers.

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  • 1. Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

    City Center

    The modernist addition to the Auckland Art Gallery has breathed life and light into a structure built in the 1880s. The soaring glass, wood, and...Read More

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  • 2. Auckland War Memorial Museum

    Parnell

    The Māori artifact collection here is one of the largest in the world, housed in a Greek Revival building in one of the city's finest...Read More

  • 3. Goldie Vineyard

    First to plant grapes on Waiheke were Kim and Jeanette Goldwater, whose eponymous wines have since earned a reputation for excellence. It's also home to...Read More

  • 4. Rangitoto Island

    Hauraki Gulf Islands

    When Rangitoto Island emerged from the sea in a series of fiery eruptions 600 years ago, it had an audience: footprints in the solidified ash...Read More

  • 5. SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton's

    This harborside marine park—the creation of New Zealand's most celebrated undersea explorer and treasure hunter—offers a fish's-eye view of the sea. A transparent tunnel, 120...Read More

  • 6. Stonyridge Vineyard

    This vineyard has followers all over the world. The Stonyridge Larose, made from the classic Bordeaux varieties, is excellent and the vintage often sells out....Read More

  • 7. Te Motu Vineyard

    The friendly Dunleavy family started planting vines in 1989. Now its Te Motu Bordeaux blend, which is made only when conditions are right, is on...Read More

  • 8. Tiritiri Matangi Island

    Hauraki Gulf Islands

    You can see rare native birds up close at Tiritiri Matangi, a bird sanctuary open to the public and accessible by ferry from Auckland or...Read More

  • 9. Waiheke Island

    Once a sleepy summer vacation retreat and hippie haven with beach houses dotting its edges, Waiheke is now home to 35 vineyards (many the passion...Read More

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