The country is renowned for its plentiful mountain views and kiwis too, but the bustling city hub of Auckland is certainly not short of things to see and do. New Zealand is not all about the sprawling mountain terrain made famous by the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
From nature escapes to cultural breaks, here are five must-see experiences when staying in Auckland.
Take the ferry to Waiheke Island
Only a 35 minute ferry journey from downtown Auckland is one of the city's most stunning nature sights. A scenic blend of lush forest, stunning vineyards and silky sand beaches, Waiheke Island has a huge range of things to see and do and is one of Auckland's best days out.
Enjoy unparalleled views from Sky Tower If you're not afraid of heights, Auckland's Sky Tower is Auckland's tallest man-made structure in New Zealand offering panoramic views of the harbour and Auckland's spectacular surroundings. Whether you're heading for one of the viewing platforms or high altitude thrills and SkyJump off the tower, Sky Tower soars above the city in one of Auckland's most exhilarating tourist attractions.
Relax at Silo Park in Wynyard Quarter Silo Park is a free public space which hosts over 50 events and exhibitions during the summer season and packs out with picnickers and other punters all year long. From the hugely popular Silo Cinema to the Wynyard Quarter Playspace, there's something here for the young and old in the refurbished park set among picturesque views of the Harbour Bridge and Auckland city skyline.
Marvel at Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tamaki Auckland's home of visual arts, Toi o Tamaki hosts over 15,000 artworks from local artists and acclaimed international names. Open daily from 10am to 5pm, the impressive collection of art traces outstanding historic, modern and contemporary art, ranging from sculpture to painting to contemporary art in all its forms.
Stroll along Queen Street This iconic shopping strip is nestled in the centre of Auckland's bustling central district. Home to some of the most acclaimed designers, international fashion labels, marketplaces, boutiques and other retailers, you're not going to find a better shopping experience in Auckland than Queen Street. The precinct also boasts many sweet shops and patisseries, making Queen Street the perfect spot for shoppers with a sweet tooth.
Whether it's a short weekend break or a lengthy city stay, be sure to catch these top five experiences before your home flight from Auckland.