Auckland: The Most Populated City in New Zealand

The most populated city in New Zealand, this city has all your typical big city attractions: a tall tower, a waterfront, a downtown, and good eats.

Items are not listed in any particular order. Anything in italics is on my to-do list.

 What to Do | What to Eat | Where to Stay | Transportation | Map | Resources

What to Do

1. Sky Tower

sky tower view
View from the top
sky tower view
Standing on glass is scary

Good for views of the city and standing tall. You can even bungee jump off this tower if you want. We just went up for the view.

2. Queens Wharf

Walk around the wharf to get good sights and eats.

3. Silo Park

A park off the shores. There is a market on Saturdays. Lunch at Silo Park. There are a bunch of restaurants nearby the park. Every Saturday, there is the Silo Day Markets from 12pm–6pm offering a mix of food stalls, vintage clothing, contemporary artists and more. Get a bite to eat and walk along Auckland’s picturesque waterfront. Located on the corner of Jellicoe and Beaumont Streets, Wynyard Quarter, Auckland. Opening hours:

  • Friday – 5pm – late.
  • Saturday – 12pm – 6pm.

4. Cornwall Park

View from One Tree Hill in Cornwall Park
sky tower view
Obelisk on One Tree Hill
NZ Sheep
New Zealand Sheep! Finally!

Accessible from the city via a 40min bus ride ($5 NZD cash or buy a Hop card at a convenience store, this park is huge but you can finish it in a leisurely one hour hike. You can hike up One Tree Hill, a volcanic hill with sheep and an obelisk on top. It also has the observatory.

5. Queen Street

Just your typical city shopping – nothing special.

6. Tiritiri Matangi Island

Only one shuttle in the morning for you to get to the island for bird watching, hiking, and enjoying the scenery.

7. Night Market

Auckland has so many markets and markets are a great way to experience the local cuisine, fruits, vegetables, and seafood. They even have a night market. Location changes each night.

8. Victoria Park

9. Auckland Botanical Gardens

What to Eat

1. La Cigale Market, Bistro & Cafe

There is a French farmer’s market on Saturday mornings. There are tons of breads, meats, sandwiches, entrees, drinks, and seafood!

I have more Eat Sweet and Eat Savory recommendations on my Auckland map here.

Where to Stay

We stayed at the Crowne Plaza Auckland hotel located right in the city center; super easy to get to from the SkyBus (airport to city bus). It was very accessible with nearby grocery stores, shopping malls, cafes, restaurants, and shopping. Check-in is at 3:00pm. The rooms were reasonable and clean.
Address: 128 Albert St, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand.

View from the Crowne Plaza Auckland

The next time we were in Auckland, we stayed at the Jet Park Airport Hotel and it was great. It was right next to the airport and you just call their shuttle to and from the airport. The food at their restaurant is really good.

The third time we were in Auckland, we stayed at the Rydges Auckland hotel. It was right in the city center and you just take the 24-hr SkyBus from the airport to this hotel. The hotel is centrally located, very clean, has good accommodations, and has a great gym.

Food at the restaurant in the lobby of the Jet Park Airport Hotel


To and from the airport

For a single rider, using the Skybus is the best option. It’s available 7days/week, 24 hours everyday. It does multiple pick-ups to and from the airport to the city at a high frequency and super cheap cost. It’s $18 NZD/per person if you pay the bus driver (cash only) or kiosk (cash and card). Plus the bus has free wi-fi.

If you have 3 or 4 riders, it may make sense to take a taxi to your location as it will be around $60 NZD total to the city center (where the Sky Tower is).

Around the city

You can either pay the bus driver cash to get a single-trip ticket or buy a Hop card.


JoYo Guide to Auckland and New Zealand Map here.


JoYo New Zealand Guide



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