Initial thoughts on Auckland: tiny. Much smaller than I expected. It took me 6 hours to do everything I planned on doing in an entire day. I was done by 2pm with the rest of the day to fill.
What makes Auckland a great city to explore is its proximity to greenery. The city itself isn’t that beautiful, buildings seem to be mostly banks and finance type places. Alhough there isn’t much to do in the city it does make a perfect base for exploring this part of the island. It’s easy to catch a bus to Paihia, Taupo, and Rotorua.
First on my list was visiting the volcanic peak Mount Eden. It’s about an hour walk from the city centre depending where you are. There’s a hop on hop off bus or a public city bus that can take you there. Since Auckland is expensive I decided to walk. Walking also helps me explore areas I wouldn’t have gone to otherwise; I got to explore the area of Eden on my way over.
Mount Eden provides beautiful panoramic views of Auckland. There’s no admission to the park making the best free activity in the city.
Silo Park and Wynyard Quarter
Historically a marine and industrial area,Wynyard Quarter has been transformed into a promenade with restraunts, residential buildings and more development underway. At the end of the quarter is Silo park. The area has a playground, green space, and events like outdoor movie screenings.
I was hesitant at visiting this museum as I find some museums can be dry. After reading positive reviews online and from hostel mates I gave it a go. Also I had one afternoon left in Auckland and did not want to waste it. As previously mentioned there aren’t a ton of budgey activities to do here. I ended up spending 2 hours at the museum, mostly in the Maori exhibits and Wildlife Photography of the Year exhibit. I hardly knew anything about thr Maori culture before coming to New Zealand. The museum was a much better experience than I thought. Looking at artifacts can be boring but there are enough examples of art and history to break it up. I had no idea what the Wildlife Photography of the Year exhibit was but after experiencing it, I want to see this every year. The exhibit is on loan from three Natural History Museum in London. It showcases 100 photographs of nature and wildlife. Photography isnt allowed in the exhibit which is why I can’t show photos.