I decided to spend 3 days in New Zealand's largest city, merely as a way to ease my jetlag before continuing southwards. Truth be told, I did not think Auckland was going to make such a big impression on me. But I was pleasantly surprised to find that there is plenty to see and do in the city. Better yet, there is A LOT of vegan grub to eat along the way! This post will guide you through how to make the most out of 72 hours in Auckland.
We will kick off as soon as you have gotten settled into your accommodation. I would recommend staying in Ponsonby, and you will have a suburb full of cosy bars, independent cafés and fancy op shops right at your door step. From here, it is only about a 15 minute walk to the CBD.
DAY 1: City Walk, Auckland Art Gallery and Sky Tower
Comfy shoes on and get ready for a full day of walking! Make your way down to Karangahape Road (commonly just K Road!). Stop to pick up some vegan cookies from Moustache Milk Bar or freshly baked pastries from Tart Bakery located a bit further down in St Kevins Arcade. Spend some time browsing the quirky second hand and crystal shops, then continue through the arcade down to Myer's Park, passing the replica of Michelangelo's Moses on the stairs.
After the caffeine infusion, it is time to get cultural at the Auckland Art Gallery (or simply admire the beautiful building!). All permanent exhibits are admission free. Whilst you are in the neighbourhood, also have a look at the tiles celebrating the Women's Suffragette Centanary at Khartoum Place just down the stairs from the gallery entrance. Spend the afternoon relaxing under the ginormous trees found in Albert Park.
As dusk falls, make your way to the Auckland Sky Tower. At 328 metres this is the tallest free standing structure in the Southern Hemisphere. The entrance fee is currently $29 (or $20 with a cheeky student discount!) for beautiful views (and jelly legs walking over the glass floor!).
Day 2: Waiheke Island
Waiheke, located a mere 35 minute ferry ride from Auckland CBD (adult return ticket $40), is a little haven of white beaches and glorious wineyards. It makes the perfect espace from the hustle and bustle of the city; making the island a popular weekend destination for Aucklanders too.
Once off the boat, pick up a rental bike near the ferry terminal (about $35 for 1 day) as your mode of transport. This should also include a map of the island. Make a lunch stop at Little Frog Cafe in Okeroa for some vegan grub and then head down to the picturesque beach just below. For the late afternoon, visit one of the many vineyards for a tasting before taking the ferry back to the city.
Day 3: Mount Eden
After a stroll and morning cuppa at one of the many flash Ponsonby cafés, head towards Mount Eden. All of Auckland rests upon volcanic fields, Mt Eden is one out of 53 of those.
It is a steep walk up from the parking lot but it is well rewarded with epic cityscape views.
Have you been to Auckland?
Do you have any gems to add to the list?
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