The 10 best things about living in Auckland
At the beginning of the year we spent a couple months living in Auckland, we had a great time and loved the vibe of the city. Here we share with you what we liked the most about being there.
#01 Travel culture of the city,
starting point of a lot of backpackers,
people from all over the world
Everyday in Auckland, and this is specially true in the CBD you can watch a lot of backpackers coming into the city, siting inside the skybus looking for their hostels address. daily lots of new persons are coming in to the country to start a years holiday or a student visa and ost of them start by Auckland, as is the biggest and closest airport in New Zealand.
This makes the city a really good place for meeting interesting people form all over the world, and the nice thing is that mostly everybody is there for travel! so you can find people with the same interest and meet possible future travelbuddies.
We think this makes Auckland a multicultural city, and can be quite a shock if you are not used to see people from all cultural backgrounds mixed up inside a big city, this is specially true because the natural occurring mix of populations in Auckland.
#02 Enjoy staying a few months
in one of the most livable city
of the world
Auckland has been named one of the cities with highest life quality on the world, we were very happy to experience this level of life and commodities around the city, the cleanliness of the place, the easy and accurate transport system (despite a lot of complaints about local people and persons coming from countries where their transport system works better. they have clearly never lived in Mexico!!, over there you have quite some reasons to complain).
Just a few meters down our street we had sentinel bay, a little bay where we used to go and chill during the afternoon and weekends, a very clean and private beach with sun beds, toilets and showers, where the people that lived around the block shared the small piece of sand to put out the blankets and tan the skin, or have a nice picnic on the sunny days.
#03 Find as many burger joints
as you can
and make your top 3
You may not agree with us, and yes while in NZ you can find the most breath taking landscapes and peaceful beaches but we think New Zealand is not the best place of the world to talk about food. we discovered that on the burger department everybody tends to do very well, so we decided to go search for the best burger in town, a little adventure that lasted for a couple months while we gathered all the information and visited all the different places.
After a very respectable number of venues visited and after surviving a few episodes of acute food coma, we came up with our favorite one:
Velvet Burger, the size, the smell; the presentation it is for us the winner overall, we recommend to try the deer patty burger and the vegetarian one!
If you want an awesome tip: go on Tuesday evening between 7 and 10 to get the promotion of two burgers for the price of one! to get this promotion you will be asked for a secret password, you can go like Velvets Burger fb page and get the secret word there. Enjoy!
If you have ever been to Auckland you probably know Ponsonby or at least heard of it. it is a trendy Neighborhood very close to the CBD with amazing views of the city centre, you can find in here very classy shops, top notch restaurants, fashion boutiques and fancy bars to get decent cocktails.
Where everything seems to come out of a hipster fairy tale.
We where very happy to have spent a couple months living a few blocks away from ponsonby’s center, we enjoyed walks to take coffee and have a cake for dessert to several of the shops around.
If you are around Ponsonby and start to be hungry, we enjoyed a lot eating at « le hall », which is a trendy food court with several types of food and drinks to offer, from Japanese to some local dishes es fish and chips.
The atmosphere of the place is very relaxed, we had a great time eating here and then looking for a dessert and a good coffee.
#05 Amazing view of the skyline
everywhere you go
We decided to look for the best spot in the city to watch the sunset, so we started to go to all the parks around, to check them out and the views they had to offer.
Always is rewarding to go into a park in New Zealand, they are all in very good condition and of course they are beautiful, but the ones we enjoyed the most where: Mt. Albert, because is closer to the CBD and the views in the afternoon are quite photogenic, the way up and the neighborhood around are also very cute, so this made it very enjoyable for us. The other park we liked a lot was One Tree Hill, this one is a further away but is definitely worth the trip to visit, you can spend there all afternoon having q BBQ in the designated areas, chill in the grass and then at one point go to the summit and check the obelisk and the vast 360° views. also is very curious all the animals in this park it’s like a farm, you have sheep, cows, chicken, rabbits and other stuff walking around the place, so if you are an animal lover this is the perfect place for you.
other spot that we liked very much was the Devenport pier and water front, although is not a park it’s a nice place to spend an afternoon and have a stroll around watching the sunset, you will love it from here.
#06 Contrast between
the modern architecture of the city
and the old victorian style
of the houses around
It was a quite pleasing visual experience to observe the modern architecture of the city, with new buildings and a lot of attention put into the details, make contrast with the usual old victorian style of the hoses in the neighborhoods around, all of them made of wood, with the decoration and roof painted in white. this was very noticeable in the points where the city and the next suburb started to mix.
#07 Green areas,
and activities to do around
We talked about parks in one of the past points, but here we want to mention the green corners that are all over the city, even if it’s just a bench to sit in a lost street , they made the city a more beautiful place. When we were living in Herne Bay we where very close to Victoria Park, it’s a huge green area in the heart of the city full of people ding all kinds of activities, we went there some weekends to have a picnic, take pictures and to practice in our recently acquired slack line.
We were doing climbing during this months in Auckland we frequented the Extreme Rock Climbing in Panemure at the beginning of the weeks and our Wednesdays we were joining Aurac Club to climb in the boulder hole of Auckland’s University, if you are interested in climbing, getting in touch with Aurac, which is an mountain and alpine club, this can get you to know a bunch of cool people with similar interests, they make some trips to climb out of the city.
#08 Harbor, waterfront,
The waterfront of Auckland city is so cool, a very peaceful and nice place where you can spend some hours walking around, there are a bunch of restaurants, bars and coffees offering all varieties of food and drinks. Keep walking along the wharf and you will end up in Silo Park where you can go up to have a view point over the city buildings.
On the other side, just beside the ferry terminal, you can find the cloud, that is a funky white building resembling a cloud, where you can find some activities to do, like playing giant chess, also the cloud is used to make small expos, if you check their calendar you will see that often there is something going on in there.
#09 City beaches
A very confortable thing that we found about living in Auckland is that you can easily have a quick weekend or afternoon escape to the beautiful beaches inside the city, just a couple minutes drive from the center and you are in a beautiful beach with a view of the Rangitoto Volcano just in front of you.It’s easy to go and spend a whole day having a BBQ with some beers, meeting locals and also traveling people and why not take a refreshing swim in the water. Our favorite places to go for a quick sim and short picnic are: Takapuna beach, and mission bay. if you plan to go here on the weekend we advise you to go with time, get there early so you make sure you find a nice parking spot and a good place next to a BBQ, because on these days this beaches can get packed with people. enjoy!
#10 City location
The location of Auckland is very privileged, you have a city between 2 big bays that give way out to the 2 oceans, the pacific ocean on the east and the Tasman sea on the west.
You can easily get out of the city to go to some of he awesome places around at no more than 1 hour driving distance, like for example the marine reserve of Goat Island, which offers an excellent spot for diving.
You have also around several beaches, some of them very famous for their surfing waves and black sands, like Piha beach or Muriwai. If you want to know more about this beaches you follow this link: here.