09 August 2017
New Zealand’s Most Liveable City
Sitting in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, New Zealand is made up of two main land masses, the North Island and the South Island. Auckland is the largest city on the North Island and the most popular destination for tourists.
Situated towards the northern tip of the New Zealand’s North Island, Auckland is a city that’s home to over 1.4 million people, more than a third of the country’s population. Most are drawn to the city for the quality of life it offers. Situated between two natural harbors, Auckland is a place where vibrant city style and spectacular landscapes go hand in hand.
With a unique geographical position, Auckland boasts an abundance of things to see and do. Some people say that the city is a food-lovers’ paradise, bustling with trendy cafes, ethnic eateries, and award-winning restaurants. But, it’s also home to some of the country's best museums, including the Auckland War Memorial Museum and the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki making it a great place to take in some culture.
On the outskirts of the city, there’s a plethora of options, from beaches to mountains and grasslands, for nature lovers to enjoy. If you’re the outdoors type, then don’t miss getting out onto the waters of the Haruki Gulf and exploring its many islands. There are breathtaking landscapes to be found at Waiheke Island, Cornwall Park, Mount Eden, Waitakere Ranges Regional Park, and Rangitoto Island.
Not far from the city by car, visitors will also find iconic Kiwi attractions like the Waitomo Glowworm Caves and Hobbiton, the movie set for the Lord of The Rings movies.
It’s not just tourists who are drawn to this city. Auckland is the region of choice for over half of the country’s new migrants. Besides job opportunities, Auckland also offers a good climate, stunning natural environment with beautiful harbors, beaches, and parks, and its vibrant, cosmopolitan center. So it’s not surprising that Auckland has been named as one of the world’s most liveable cities, ranking third in the Mercer Quality of Living survey for the past four years.
PLACES TO VISIT
Queen Street is a popular area for an urban walk. There are upscale stores like Gucci and Louis Vuitton, as well as movie and performing arts theaters, government buildings, and restaurants. Just a few blocks away, you'll find popular Auckland attractions like the Sky Tower and the Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki. Queen Street stretches almost two miles through the heart of the city.
WAITAKERE RANGES REGIONAL PARK
Waitakere is an area not to be missed by travelers, especially nature lovers. Located on the North Island's west coast, about 20 miles away from downtown Auckland, Waitakere Ranges Regional Park has 40,000 acres of forest and beaches. Visitors can go hiking, biking, bird-watching, or just enjoy strolling along the park's black-sand beaches. Must-see landscapes include Piha and Whatipu beaches, Fairy Falls, and Cascade Kauri waterfalls.
Waiheke Island is located within the Hauraki Gulf near Rangitoto Island and Tiritiri Matangi Open Sanctuary. The island features several vineyards, an olive grove, three white-sand beaches, and a variety of shops and restaurants. It’s been said that Waiheke Island is one of the best wine areas in the region. The island can be reached by ferry in one hour.
HOBBITON MOVIE SET
If you are a movie buff or fan of the Lord of the Rings movies, Hobbiton Movie Set is one for your “must-visit list”. Located 100 miles southeast of Auckland, the Hobbiton set from "The Lord of the Rings" and "The Hobbit" movies is now a tourist attraction. Even those who haven’t seen the movies will find that the picturesque scenery of the filming location makes a worthwhile visit.