is the largest and most populous urban area in the country with a population
approaching 1.4 million. Increasingly cosmopolitan, Auckland also has the
largest Polynesian population of any city in the world and has seen many
people of Asian ethnicity move there in the last two decades.
In Māori, the name for Auckland region is Tāmaki-makau-rau or the
transliterated version of Auckland - Ākarana.
Auckland lies between the Hauraki Gulf of the Pacific Ocean to the east, the
low Hunua Ranges to the south-east, the Manukau Harbour to the south-west,
and the Waitakere Ranges and smaller ranges to the west and north-west. The
central part of the urban area occupies a narrow isthmus between the Manukau
Harbour on the Tasman Sea and the Waitemata Harbour on the Pacific Ocean.
The Auckland region is an antipasto of environments laid out on a huge
platter to make one amazing city, boasting three harbours, two mountain
ranges, 48 volcanic cones and more than 50 islands making one of the few
cities in the world to have harbours on two separate major bodies of water.
Auckland is popularly known as the "City of Sails" because the harbour is
often dotted with hundreds of yachts and has more per capita than any other
city in the world.
is where everyone lives within half an hour of beautiful beaches, hiking
trails and a dozen enchanted holiday islands. Add a sunny climate, a
background rhythm of Polynesian culture and a passion for outstanding food,
wine and shopping, you are now beginning to get the picture of Auckland.
Auckland's blend of the South Pacific Islands, with Polynesian culture,
glistening harbours and modern city environment
including High Street, Queen Street, Ponsonby Road, and Karangahape
Road are very popular with urban socialites.
Newmarket and Parnell are up-market shopping areas and the
Viaduct Basin where the two America's Cup challenges (2000 Cup and 2003 Cup)
Many national treasures are displayed at the Auckland Art Gallery, while
many other significant cultural artefacts reside at the Auckland War
Memorial Museum, the National Maritime Museum, or the Museum of Transport
and Technology (MOTAT). Exotic creatures can be observed at the Auckland Zoo
and Kelly Tarlton's Underwater World. Movies and rock concerts (notably, the
"Big Day Out") are also well patronised.
to Auckland are beautiful beaches, forests, surf and seclusion. With
the sheltered Waitemata Harbour at its doorstep, Auckland sees many nautical
events, and there are also a large number of sailing clubs in Auckland, as
well as Westhaven Marina, the largest of the Southern Hemisphere.
Beyond the harbour are the many islands of the gulf, most accessible on a
day tour and some offering overnight accommodation.
Auckland is the major gateway for international air travel into New Zealand
through Auckland International Airport used by Air New Zealand, Qantas,
Pacific Blue, Jet Star, Singapore Airlines, Emirates, Air Pacific, Korean
Auckland International Airport is also a major hub for
Air New Zealand National and
Jet Star domestic air services to
Wellington, Christchurch, Dunedin and Queenstown and
Air New Zealand Link
air services to major regional centres through out New Zealand.
Auckland is the northern terminal for the Northern Explorer train that
operates to and from
Wellington, Palmerston North, Hamilton, Tongariro National Park, Ohakune and
Hamilton and a major hub for inter-regional and long distance
bus, coach and scenic coach services to
Paihia/Bay of Islands,
Ohakune (Turoa Skifeld),
National Park (Tongariro
Crossing and Whakapapa village and skifield),
Palmerston North and
There are combined ferry and bus services from
Auckland to Blenheim,
Auckland to Christchurch,
Auckland to Kaikoura and
Auckland to Nelson.
There are no passenger train or rail services from Auckland to Whangarei,
Paihia (Bays of Islands), Kaitaia, Kerikeri, Waitomo Caves, Tauranga,
Rotorua, Taupo, Napier, Hastings or Gisborne.