New Zealand has been one of the rare countries around the globe that has handled the novel coronavirus pandemic in an exemplary manner, allowing its citizens to now rest and relax knowing they are perfectly safe. Unfortunately, we aren’t all quite as lucky, and fully free to travel the world as we used to.
However, you might be a New Zealander yearning to explore the beauty of your country, a neighbor eagerly waiting for the opening of borders, or simply an avid traveler carefully planning their next post-pandemic adventure. No matter the case, Auckland still represents a top tourist attraction, being among the largest and most exciting cities in New Zealand, and here are some tips for exploring it once travel is safe again:
CHOOSE THE BEST TIME TO VISIT THE CITY
Located in the Southern Hemisphere, Auckland’s seasons are reversed to what most of the Northern travelers might be accustomed to, but it still offers quite a mild and pleasant climate. Summer, which lasts from December to February in New Zealand, is generally the most popular period for visiting Auckland, but it’s the same time when locals go on holidays as well. This means that the summers can get quite busy, brimming both with tourists and free locals.
If Auckland is your main attraction, and you aren’t particularly keen on visiting New Zealand’s beaches, then fall might be the best time to visit, from March until May. This period still offers warm and enjoyable weather, along with smaller crowds, as well as lower, shoulder season prices that might benefit budget travelers.
FIND THE MOST SUITABLE ACCOMMODATION
Even though hotels are usually the most common accommodation option among travelers, they tend to be quite costly in Auckland. You can expect to pay at least 100 NZD a night during the high season, and that is only for the more affordable, three-star hotels. While this might not be such a big issue for luxury travelers, those exploring the city on a budget might want to look into some alternative options.
For instance, there is a wide array of Airbnb options around Auckland, offering more affordable prices suited to any type of tourist. However, they could rise in cost during the summer as well, averaging around 80 NZD. If you’re looking for the most budget-friendly solution, hostels will be your best bet, offering low-cost shared rooms, as well as free Wi-Fi and additional self-catering facilities as a standard.
HIRE A CAR FOR YOUR TRANSPORTATION NEEDS
While taxis tend to be quite expensive in Auckland, as is the case with most tourist destinations, the city does have quite organized and efficient public transport, which is among the most affordable options as well. However, if you wish to explore the city at your own pace, or even take a road trip around the island, a car rental will be the best choice.
Thankfully, the city provides a number of different options, even offering car hire at Auckland airport that you could organize as soon as you land, and experience the comfort and ease of having your own vehicle. It’s worth mentioning that New Zealanders drive on the left side of the road, however, and that the country requires an International Driver’s License for rentals as well, which you could acquire at home before you embark on your journey.
PLAN YOUR IDEAL HOLIDAY ITINERARY
The final thing left to do is plan a holiday filled with fun and relaxing activities. If you’ve decided to hire a vehicle, you can effortlessly take a trip across New Zealand, starting from spots like the Hobbiton, Waiheke Island, and Rangitoto island near Auckland, and even finishing the adventure by exploring the beauty of the South Island, if time permits.
If you plan on staying in the city, however, Auckland offers an abundance of experiences as well, enough to satisfy any type of traveler. Animal lovers can decide to feed adorable lambs at Sheepworld, see the stunning Muriwai Gannet Colony, or take a trip to Auckland Zoo, for instance, while nature enthusiasts might enjoy a walk along the Coast to Coast Trail or visiting the volcanic peak of Mount Eden, where you could learn more about the local Maori culture as well.
On the other hand, adrenaline junkies can enjoy bungee jumps from the Harbour Bridge or the Sky Tower, history buffs could be delighted by a visit to Howick Historical Village or a walk through Waikumete Cemetery, while families might like wandering the North Shore or snorkeling on Goat Island.
Evidently, Auckland is a unique, fascinating, and absolutely wonderful city that offers plenty of interesting and unique activities to please any type of traveler. All you truly have to do is create an ideal itinerary that suits you the most, and you will undoubtedly enjoy this beautiful New Zealand destination.