Auckland is a vibrant New Zealand city with a captivating history of Maori settlers who arrived here first, known as Tāmaki Makaurau. British colonizers came later, shaping its future. In 1840 the Treaty of Waitangi was signed, establishing the city as a British settlement.
Gold and fuel growth attracted the immigrants because of the wealth this city was gaining. Auckland quickly became the country’s economic center. It is also known as the iconic Sky Tower of NZ because of its heaven, symbols, and modernity.
Aucklanders are passionate about sports, with the All Blacks rugby team holding a special place in people’s hearts. Today, the city thrives with innovation, art, and commerce while preserving its natural wonders and many adventurous places and things to do in Auckland.
Its rich past echoes through its streets, inviting exploration and discovery. However, if you plan to come here in warmer months, December to February are best for warm weather and outdoor activities. Moreover, March to May is better for milder temperatures and fewer crowds.
You must be excited after getting into the history of Auckland; if you want to visit Auckland in your vacations, just worry about your flight, as we have already solved all other hurdles. You can get all the amazing places in Auckland below, so keep reading!
1) Learn about the history of New Zealand at Auckland War Memorial Museum
The Auckland War Memorial Museum opened its door in 1852. It started as a small collection house; over the years, the museum expanded its collection and moved to its permanent home in the iconic neoclassical building atop Auckland Domain in 1929.
Today it features many historical things to do in Auckland, like cultural institutions, preserving and showcasing the nation’s history, natural heritage, and war memorials.
One of the most captivating aspects of this Museum is its extensive collection of Maori and Pacific artifacts. Immerse yourself in the rich cultures and traditions of the Maori and admire their meeting houses, traditional canoes, and exquisite treasures that provide insights into the spiritual beliefs, artistry, and ancestral heritage of these vibrant cultures.
Discover the geological forces that shaped Auckland’s landscape through interactive exhibits and displays showcasing volcanic specimens and artifacts. Get engaged with interactive displays, life-sized animal models, and educational programs that bring the natural world to life within the museum’s walls.
Parnell, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
2) Spend a day with the animals of Auckland at Auckland Zoo
Auckland Zoo, established in 1922, has been a cherished wildlife sanctuary in New Zealand’s largest city for over a century, providing a home to diverse species while promoting conservation and education.
You can find many exciting things to do in Auckland here, but first, get up close and personal with adorable penguins during the daily “Penguin Encounter.” Here you can learn about their fascinating behaviors and even watch them being fed.
Embark on a thrilling behind-the-scenes “Lions Tour” to witness majestic lions in their natural habitat. Discover their captivating stories and the dedicated conservation efforts to protect these magnificent creatures.
Motions Rd, Western Springs, Auckland 1022, New Zealand
3) Go on a leisurely walk at Cornwall Park
Cornwall Park was gifted to the city in 1901 by Sir John Logan Campbell, a prominent businessman, and philanthropist. It was originally a working farm and was transformed into a public park.
During World War II, Cornwall Park played a crucial role in New Zealand’s defense strategy. The park was home to an underground command center called the “Park House Bunker.”
Take a stroll through the enchanting gardens of Cornwall Park. Admire the vibrant flowers, towering trees, and well-manicured lawns. Discover hidden pathways and peaceful nooks, perfect for tranquility amidst nature’s beauty.
Challenge yourself to climb One Tree Hill, an iconic volcanic peak in Cornwall Park. Enjoy breathtaking panoramic cityscape views, rugged coastlines, and distant mountains. Whether you hike or jog, the exhilarating ascent to Hill provides a rewarding experience.
Green Lane West, Epsom, Auckland 1051, New Zealand
4) Meet some sharks and stingrays at SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium
SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium was opened in 1985 as the world’s first curved tunnel aquarium, revolutionizing how visitors interact with marine life.
Get ready to embark on a thrilling shark cage dive and an unforgettable adrenaline rush with these magnificent predators.
At SEA LIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium, you can also do some unpredictable activities and things to do in Auckland: walk through a mesmerizing tunnel surrounded by sharks, stingrays, and colorful fish, offering an immersive underwater experience.
Additionally, you can get up close and personal with adorable penguins through a unique Antarctic Encounter, witnessing their playful antics and learning about their natural habitat.
23 Tamaki Drive, Orakei, Auckland 1071, New Zealand
5) Embark on the ride of Sky Twister at Rainbow’s End
Rainbow’s End, the vibrant amusement park, traces back to 1982. A single rainbow emerged from the imagination of its creators, igniting a journey of colorful thrills and unforgettable adventures that continues to enchant visitors to this day.
Visiting Rainbow’s End? It’s time to experience the adrenaline-pumping rush of the newly unveiled “Sky Twister.” It is a towering spinning ride that sends riders spiraling through the sky or embarking on a mesmerizing virtual reality journey with “Enchanted Realms.”
You can also indulge in a tasteful sensation at “Rainbow’s Delights,” a delightful food court featuring an array of delectable treats from savory delights and sweet confections. So visit this heaven on earth today and experience the life of heaven on earth.
2 Clist Crescent, Manukau City Centre, Auckland 2104, New Zealand
6) Explore lava caves at Rangitoto Island
Rangitoto Island is a mesmerizing volcanic island nestled in the Hauraki Gulf, boosting a history that began around 600 years ago. However, it wasn’t until around 1350 AD that Rangitoto erupted from the depths of the sea, its molten lava sculpting the land and transforming it into the distinctive volcanic landscape we see today.
During World War II, the island served as a military stronghold, accommodating various defense structures, including tunnels, gun emplacements, and observation posts.
Explore the Lava Caves and get excited about some adventurous things to do in Auckland through Rangitoto’s labyrinthine lava caves. Equipped with a flashlight, venture into the dark passages and marvel at the fascinating rock formations created by the island’s volcanic eruptions.
Hike to the Summit, lace up your hiking boots, and challenge yourself with a trek to the summit of Rangitoto Island. Along the way, you’ll witness the regenerating native forest, awe-inspiring vistas, and the sight of the iconic volcanic crater, a testament to the island’s fiery past.
Rangitoto Island Auckland 1010, New Zealand
7) Learn about the lives of Maori people at Waiheke Island
Waiheke Island is nestled in the Hauraki Gulf and boasts a captivating history that intertwines nature, culture, and heritage. Originally inhabited by the Māori people, it became a cherished destination for European settlers in the late 19th century.
Over time, the island has transformed into an outstanding spot for outdoor fun and things to do in Auckland. It features a vibrant haven renowned for its scenic beauty, world-class vineyards, and artistic community.
Waiheke Island offers a myriad of activities for every type of adventurer. Firstly, indulge in a wine-tasting experience at one of the island’s renowned vineyards. Here you can sample exquisite wines while soaking in the breathtaking views of rolling vineyards and sparkling waters.
Secondly, embark on a scenic hike along the island’s picturesque trails, exploring hidden coves, lush forests, and pristine beaches, immersing yourself in the island’s natural splendor at every step.
Waiheke Island, Auckland, New Zealand
8) Go to the top of Auckland by visiting Maungakiekie / One Tree Hill
Maungakiekie is also known as One Tree Hill, an iconic volcanic peak in Auckland, New Zealand. The lone Monterey Pine atop the hill, for which it was named, stood for over a century until 2000, becoming a cherished symbol.
When you visit Maungakiekie / One Tree Hill, remember it offers many exciting things to do in Auckland. First, explore the lush and sprawling Cornwall Park surrounding the hill, perfect for picnics, walks, and scenic vistas.
Secondly, climb to the summit and view Auckland’s skyline, harbor, and surrounding landscapes. The hill’s rich history, volcanic landscape, and iconic obelisk memorial make it a must-visit destination for nature lovers and history enthusiasts. So don’t miss a chance if you’re a nature lover and want to spend time in nature.
Maungakiekie / One Tree Hill, One Tree Hill, Auckland 1023, New Zealand
9) Enjoy sightseeing of volcanoes at Mount Eden
Mount Eden has a fascinating history with various trailing and hiking things to do in Auckland. It was formed around 28,000 years ago by a volcanic eruption, leaving behind a distinct crater. Māori tribes once used it as a pā (fortified village).
Today Mount Eden offers panoramic views of the city and is a testament to Auckland’s volcanic past. When you visit Mount Eden, you’ll get captivating activities. Hike up to the volcanic cone to explore the majestic crater.
Delve into the site’s historical significance by going on a guided tour to take you into Mount Eden’s Māori heritage and cultural significance. The tour of Mount Eden will combine nature, history, and culture to create an unforgettable adventure of Auckland.
Mount Eden, Auckland 1024, New Zealand
10) Feel the fragrant air of flowers at Auckland Botanic Gardens
Established in 1982, the Auckland Botanic Gardens in New Zealand is a 64-hectare horticultural haven. It features a collection of over 10,000 plant species, attracting visitors seeking tranquility and botanical exploration.
The gardens also prioritize education, conservation, and research things to do in Auckland. Here you can explore the Edible Garden, where visitors can discover a variety of edible plants. Learn about sustainable gardening practices, taste fresh produce, and gain inspiration for growing your food in this unique and educational space.
Visit the Indigenous Plant Collection by going on a journey through New Zealand’s rich flora. Also, discover the unique native species and immerse yourself in the beauty and diversity of New Zealand’s natural heritage within the serene surroundings of the gardens.
Hill Road 102, The Gardens, 2105 Auckland, New Zealand
11) Immerse into the thrilling world of casinos at SkyCity Casino
SkyCity Casino opened its doors in 1996. The iconic complex boasts a unique history, built atop a former landfill site. It has hosted numerous international events, including the 2000 America’s Cup and the 2011 Rugby World Cup.
SkyCity Casino offers visitors many thrilling experiences and things to do in Auckland. One must-try activity is the SkyWalk, where adrenaline lovers can take a guided walk around the exterior of the Sky Tower, 192 meters above the ground.
For a more relaxed adventure, the SkyCity Observatory provides breathtaking panoramic views of Auckland’s skyline, day or night, offering an unforgettable sightseeing experience. So wait no more and book your tickets today to witness the sky of New Zealand and your friends.
Victoria Street West 72, CBD Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
12) Satisfy your sweet tooth with the icecream of Giapo
Giapo is a renowned gelato brand founded in Auckland by Gianpaolo Grazioli. Since its establishment in 2008, Giapo has gained international recognition for its innovative and artistic approach to gelato making.
Giapo is a vibrant destination offering many exciting activities and things to do in Auckland. Savour the world of ice cream artistry, where Giapo’s innovative flavors and extravagant creations will tantalize your taste buds.
You can also explore their immersive ice cream experiences, like crafting your personalized dessert while Immersing yourself in the unique ambiance and passionate staff.
With a commitment to quality and creativity, Giapo has become a beloved destination for dessert enthusiasts worldwide
Gore Street 12, CBD Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
13) Enjoy stargazing at Stardome Observatory & Planetarium
Stardome Observatory & Planetarium has a remarkable history; it was founded in 1967, having enthralled stargazers for over half a century. It showcases state-of-the-art facilities with artistic things to do in Auckland by offering captivating shows, astronomical exhibitions, and educational programs.
When you visit this amazing place, engage yourself in the mesmerizing planetarium shows, where cutting-edge technology brings the universe to life.
Afterward, it’s their turn to witness the magic of stargazing through their powerful telescopes, guided by knowledgeable astronomers. Stardome continues to ignite curiosity about the vast universe we inhabit. These unforgettable activities offer a captivating journey through the cosmos, leaving visitors in awe of the celestial wonders.
670 Manukau Road, Epsom, Auckland 1345, New Zealand
14) Witness the home of The Lord of the Rings at Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tours
Hobbiton™ Movie Set Tours offers a glimpse into the enchanting world of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth. The set, nestled in the countryside of Matamata, was first built for the iconic “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy in 1999.
After hopping over the land of Hobbiton, explore the Hobbit holes, meticulously crafted to perfection, and step into the charming world of Bilbo and Frodo Baggins.
Apart from exploring, enjoy a refreshing drink at the Green Dragon Inn, a real-life replica from the films, where you can savor the taste of Middle-earth in a cozy, atmospheric setting.
However, Hobbiton’s intricate detailing and lush greenery continue to captivate visitors, making it a must-see destination for fans and film enthusiasts. Hence, if you want to witness the movie life, visit Hobbiton once in your Auckland journey.
501 Buckland Road, Matamata 3472, New Zealand
15) Relax into the royal services of Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour
Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour was built in 2007; it stands on the site of an early 20th-century industrial area. The hotel’s design pays homage to its maritime past, featuring nautical elements, stunning waterfront views, and some historical eventful things to do in Auckland.
It also hosts world leaders and celebrities, symbolizing elegance and luxury in Auckland’s vibrant history.
Ready to savor exquisite cuisine at Lava Dining? At Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour, indulge in two incredible experiences. Begin your day with renowned delectable Pacific-inspired dishes.
Then, unwind by rejuvenating at So Spa, where skilled therapists offer an array of luxurious treatments, ensuring a blissful retreat for your mind, body, and soul. Soak yourself in these unforgettable culinary delights and relaxation moments at this exceptional destination.
Viaduct Harbour Avenue 21, CBD Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
16) Get yourself wet in the pools of Mount Albert Aquatic Centre
The Mount Albert Aquatic Centre was established in 1959. It has served as a vital community hub, providing water fun things to do in Auckland. Such as swimming and recreational facilities for generations. Over the years, the center has undergone renovations and expansions to accommodate the growing needs of the local population.
Dive into the thrilling water slides of Mount Albert Aquatic Centre, which features an array of exciting water slides to get you joyed unconditionally.
Whether you race your friends or enjoy a solo slide, the exhilarating twists, turns, and splashes guarantee a fun-filled experience for visitors of all ages.
Relax, unwind, and rejuvenate in the center’s heated pools and spa facilities. Take a dip in the warm waters or enjoy a leisurely swim. It’s the perfect way to refresh yourself after a busy day or treat yourself to well-deserved relaxation.
38 Alberton Avenue, Mount Albert, Auckland 1025, New Zealand
17) Enjoy nature adventures at Mission Bay Beach
Mission Bay Beach in Auckland was originally a significant site for the indigenous Māori people, known as Kohimarama, meaning “a place to rest.” In the 19th century, European settlers established a Catholic mission nearby, lending the beach its name. Today, Mission Bay remains a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.
Looking for some adventurous things to do in Auckland? Then you should embark on a Stand-Up Paddleboarding Adventure of Mission Bay. Rent a board from one of the local vendors and glide across the calm waters, taking in stunning views of Rangitoto Island and the Auckland skyline.
Enjoy a Picnic at Selwyn Reserve, pack some picnic essentials head to Selwyn Reserve. This tranquil green space offers shaded picnic areas, BBQ facilities, and a children’s playground. Relax under the trees, savor your meal, and appreciate the idyllic surroundings while the kids enjoy the swings and slides.
Tamaki Drive 72, Mission Bay, 1071 Auckland, New Zealand
18) Get lost and find yourself in the thrilling maze of Odyssey Sensory Maze
The Odyssey Sensory Maze has captivated visitors since its opening in 2014. Inspired by the ancient Greek epic, it offers an immersive journey and thrilling things to do in Auckland through a network of sensory illusions and challenges.
In the Odyssey Sensory Maze, you can depend on many thrilling adventures, like navigating through a twisting maze filled with optical illusions, challenging puzzles, and unexpected twists. So it’s time to test your wits and problem-solving skills while you get lost in the maze of Odyssey Sensory Maze.
You can also participate in virtual reality while experiencing a vivid and fantastical world where imagination has no bounds. Odyssey Sensory Maze promises excitement and unforgettable memories for all who dare to explore.
Lower Basement Metro Centre, Queen Street 291-297, CBD Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand.
19) Explore the world of butterflies at Butterfly Creek
Butterfly Creek in Auckland originated as a small butterfly house in 2003 and has since grown into a popular family attraction. Over the years, it expanded to include some interesting animal sightseeing things to do in Auckland. Other exhibits like reptiles, farm animals, and a dinosaur kingdom were added here.
So planning to visit Butterfly Creek? Experience the thrill of getting up close and personal with stingrays in a specially designed touch pool.
Also, learn about these fascinating creatures from knowledgeable guides and even have the opportunity to hand-feed them, creating an unforgettable and unique interaction.
You can also enter an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of Butterfly Creek. From seeing the dedicated animal care areas, this immersive tour provides an extraordinary glimpse into the inner highlights of the life of butterflies.
Tom Pearce Drive 10, Auckland Airport, 2022 Auckland, New Zealand
20) Beat your rivals in different games at GameOn Arcade, Auckland
GameOn Arcade opened its doors in 1995, captivating gamers with its nostalgic charm. Over the past 28 years, it has become a beloved hub for gaming enthusiasts. It offers a wide array of classic and modern arcade games.
At GameOn Arcade, you can dive into the thrilling world of virtual reality, where you can explore captivating virtual realms by challenging your senses.
You can also test your skills in competitive esports tournaments and showcase your gaming prowers by competing against other passionate gamers. However, if you want to enjoy more GameOn Arcade promises to create unforgettable gaming experiences for all ages.
Hence spend some money and let your player play like a free spirit!
Queen Street 291-297, CBD Auckland, Auckland 1010, New Zealand
21) Have some gaming fun at Zone Bowling Botany – Ten Pin Bowling, Laser Tag, Bumper Cars, Arcade Games
Zone Bowling Botany, established in 2008, quickly became a haven for entertainment enthusiasts. This place offers gaming things to do in Auckland, like Ten Pin Bowling, Laser Tag, Bumper Cars, and Arcade Games.
Zone Bowling Botany’s two must-try activities guarantee an exhilarating experience for all its visitors. First, challenge your friends to a round of Ten Pin Bowling, showcasing your skills and aiming for strikes.
Then, gear up for a thrilling adventure in the Laser Tag arena, where you’ll engage in heart-pounding battles and test your strategic prowess. Its place is full of exciting activities, so get ready for endless fun and unforgettable moments at Zone Bowling Botany with your family, friends, or any other group you wish to join.
Ti Rakau Drive 500A, Botany Downs, 2013 Auckland, New Zealand
Best Hotels To Stay In Auckland
If you’re looking for the best hotels in Auckland, New Zealand, here are six options known for their excellent accommodations, amenities, and customer reviews.
- Hotel DeBrett.
- Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour.
- SkyCity Grand Hotel.
- The Langham Auckland.
- Cordis, Auckland by Langham Hospitality Group.
- M Social Auckland.
These hotels provide a range of options that suit different budgets and preferences while ensuring a comfortable and enjoyable stay in Auckland. So plan a vacation today at this wonderful place and enjoy your days with our awesome things to do in Auckland.