Top Ten Things to Do in Auckland: Conference Committee’s Picks
- New Auckland Art Gallery
Enjoy exploring the newly revamped Auckland Art Gallery’s collection of more than 15,000 artworks. Friendly, knowledgeable volunteer guides will introduce you to the art, artists, stories and histories that make up our Gallery.
For more information, visit: http://www.aucklandartgallery.com/
- Take a boat to Devonport to eat, drink and wander
Devonport is just a 12-minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland. (This is one of the best ways to see the Auckland skyline by the way – keep your camera in hand!) When you step off the ferry, you can immediately see that this quaint suburb has a very village-like feel to it with bars, cafes and restaurants filling the streets – and a cinema.
For more information, visit http://www.devonport.co.nz/ferry.htm
- War Memorial Museum
Three expansive levels tell the story of New Zealand’s history, from our emergence as a nation through the loss and suffering of war, to our uniquely ancient natural history and our priceless Maori and Pacific treasures. Significant decorative arts and pictorial collections supplement one of New Zealand’s major heritage libraries.
For more information, visit: http://www.aucklandmuseum.com/
- Walk up Mount Eden, close by the Epsom Campus
Mt Eden is the highest natural point in Auckland, and provides good views in all directions over the city. In pre-European times, Mount Eden was a fortified hill for various MÄori tribes. You can get there via a 5-minute walk from the Epsom Campus.
- Zoo/Motat/Western Springs park
Auckland Zoo is recognised as one of the most progressive zoos in the world. A winner of national and international environmental-related awards, it is home to 138 different species and over 860 animals. The Museum of Transport and Techology (Motat) and Western Springs park are both within walking distance of the Zoo.
For more information, visit: http://www.aucklandzoo.co.nz/plan-your-visit/visitor-information.aspx
- West Coast beaches
Just a half hour’s drive from central Auckland, you’d find yourself in the middle of an 18,000 hectare sanctuary of native rainforest, beaches, streams and a stunning wild coastline.
For more information, visit: http://www.aatravel.co.nz/101/info/Aucklands-West-Coast.htm
- Stroll (eat and drink) in the Viaduct Basin and the adjacent Wynyard Quarter
Apart from the lovely waterfront location, there are heaps of places to eat and drink in the Viaduct Basin and the newly established Wynyard Quarte. Head downtown to the harbour and walk left for about 5 minutes.
For more information, visit: http://www.waterfrontauckland.co.nz/Areas/Wynyard-Quarter.aspx
- Mission Bay: cycle on bike from downtown (Fergs)
Mission Bay is close to the middle of the city and provides you with a great opportunity to cycle around the beautiful Eastern beaches. Going for a ride on a tandem cycle followed by a picnic on the beach, or a drink/meal in one of the many bars and cafes, could be just what you are looking for after sitting in a conference for three days.
For more information on bike hire, visit: http://www.missionbaybikehire.co.nz/
- Walk Karangahape and/or Ponsonby Rds
Walk through the streets of what was labeled Auckland’s largest residential subdivision in 1883. The landscape of this historic district showcases the grandest of buildings and their reflections of feminism, hospitality, pioneering philosophies and great social reform. Nowadays, both streets are bustling with cafes, bars and clothing shops, from recycled to designer. (NZ has great local designers!)
- Markets Galore
Every Friday and Saturday, there are markets in the centrally located Aotea Square.
For more information, visit http://www.auckland-life.com/guide/Central_City/aotea_square.php
On Saturday mornings, there is the City Farmers’ Market downtown in Britomart Square, while on Saturday and Sunday mornings, there is La Cigale French Market in Parnell, an energizing 15-20 minute walk from downtown. And then for the more adventurous, there are the Saturday morning Otara Markets, a 30-minute ride on the Waka Pacific bus that leaves from the Downtown Britomart Transport Centre.
And then there’s the bookshops – a sample:
- Time Out Bookstore, 432 Mt Eden Rd (5 minutes from the conference venue)
- The Women’s Bookshop, 105 Ponsonby Rd
- Unity Books, 19 High St (Central City)
- Paradox, 26 Victoria St, Devonport
- Evergreen (secondhand) Books, 15 Victoria St, Devonport