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Auckland is one of the world's most liveable cities, and Kiwis know it. Auckland is home to over a quarter of the country's population, which is around 1.3 million people, and all indications are that it will continue to grow rapidly. Auckland is also has the largest polynesian population of any city in the world! Originally settled by Maoris in the 1350s, because of fertile soil, many Maoris had left the area by the time Europeans had shown up because of fire arms had made coastal Maori towns too vulnerable to raids. Auckland was settled in February of 1840 and the Governor of New Zealand and it was the country's second capital, Russell in the Bay of Islands being the first. The capital was moved to Wellington in 1865 because at that time the South Island was being settled quicker. Even after losing the capital status Auckland continued to grow.
Known as the "City of Sails", Auckland is strung narrowly along an isthmus between two harbours at the north of New Zealand, with the Pacific Ocean to its east and the Tasman Sea out west. Auckland has many wonderful sights and museum, making this city a wonderful place to spend a few days. There is also a very nice night life which can get pretty rowdy. Just remember not to judge a bar by its name, because something that might sound like a dive might be a very class place.
Auckland can be divided into four neighbourhoods:
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The Sky Tower is located downtown. This large observation and telecommunications tower is over 328 metres (1,076 feet) tall making it the tallest free standing structure in the Southern Hemisphere and offers great views of the city. For the more adventurous traveller there is even an option to Sky Jump off the tower at speeds up to 85 km/h. A Sky Jump is a cross between a bungy jump and a base jump. Also the Sky City Casino and Event Centre, a large casino and event centre, is located in the Sky Tower complex for a different kind of adventurous traveller. This casino was refurbished in 2006 and has over 1,600 gaming machines. There are also over 100 tables for games like blackjack and roulette.
Auckland has a warm but temperate climate with generally mild conditions throughout the year. Temperatures during the day average from around 15 °C from June to August to around 22-24 °C from December to March. Nights average between 7-8 °C and 14-16 °C respectively. The average annual precipitation is around 1,240 mm with June and July the wettest months and January and February the driest.
|Avg Max||23.3 °C||23.6 °C||22.5 °C||19.8 °C||17 °C||14.8 °C||14 °C||14.8 °C||16 °C||17.6 °C||19.6 °C||21.6 °C|
|Avg Min||15.8 °C||15.9 °C||14.9 °C||12.5 °C||9.9 °C||7.9 °C||6.9 °C||7.9 °C||9.4 °C||10.9 °C||12.6 °C||14.3 °C|
|Rainfall||74.3 mm||81.2 mm||86.4 mm||92.9 mm||100.4 mm||116.3 mm||125.6 mm||111.4 mm||92.9 mm||80.2 mm||83.6 mm||91.4 mm|
Auckland Airport (AKL) is the main airport for New Zealand and is where most travellers start and end their trip in the country. This large airport has direct flights to several countries around the world and is located in a western suburb about 21 kilometres south of the Auckland city centre. Remember the airport has very strict bio-security with the use of dogs and x-ray machines. To avoid any fines just declare any biological material. With over 13 million passengers a year it is the busiest airport in the country and has most international connections.
To/from the airport:
Tranz Scenic operates several trains a day (some night trains are available) betwee Auckland and Wellington. It departs from Auckland at 7:25am (daily December to April, Friday to Sunday May to November) and arrives in Wellington at 7:20pm (the return train from Wellington departs and arrives at the same time).
Intercity and Newmans Coach Lines serve quite a few cities and towns throughout the country from Auckland. Nakedbus serves places as well including Whangarei and Wellington (12 hours), and buses to Gisborne and Napier. Dalroy Tours has buses to New Plymouth (5.5 hours). Main Coachline has buses to Dargaville (3 hours). Go Kiwi travels between cities on the North Island as well.
Some of the options to rent cars include the following companies:
|Airport Bed & Breakfast||1 Westney Rd, Mangere Auckland 2022||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|Airport Skyway Lodge||30 Kirkbride Road Mangere||Hostel||83|
|Jucy Hotel||62 Emily Place Downtown||Hotel||79|
|Bamber House||22 View Road Mt Eden||Hostel||85|
|Base Auckland||Corner of Queen St and Darby St Darby Street||Hostel||78|
|BK Hostel||3 Mercury Lane Cnr. Karangahape Road & Mercury Lane||HOSTEL||82|
|Borders Beyond||8 Nixon St Ponsonby Auckland||Hostel||81|
|Choice Plaza Hostel||10 Wellesley St East||Hostel||78|
|City Garden Lodge||25 St Georges Bay Road Parnell||Hostel||80|
|City Lodge||150 Vincent Street||Hostel||80|
|City Travellers Auckland||93-95 Anzac Ave Britomart||Hostel||-|
|Freemans lodge||65 Wellington street Freemans bay,Auckland||Hostel||75|
|Frienz.com Backpackers Accommodation Auckland||27-31 Victoria Street East Auckland||Hostel||79|
|All Seasons Auckland||20 Wyndham Street||Hotel||-|
|Kiwi International Hotel||411 Queen Street||Hotel||-|
|Lantana Lodge International Backpackers||60 St Georges Bay Road Parnell||HOSTEL||89|
|Nomads Fat Camel Hostel||38 Fort Street Downtown||Hostel||76|
|Nomads Auckland||16-20 Fort St Auckland||Hostel||78|
|Oaklands Lodge||5A Oakllands Road Mt Eden||Hostel||84|
|Pentlands Backpackers Hostel||22 Pentland Avenue Mt Eden||Hostel||73|
|Ponsonby Backpackers||2 franklin rd , ponsonby , auckland||Hostel||84|
|Surf 'N' Snow Backpackers||Level 1, 102 Albert Street||Hostel||72|
|Tetra Budget Apartments Auckland||85 Wakefield Street Auckland||Apartment||-|
|Yapinghouse||79 Owens Rd Epsom Auckland||HOSTEL||75|
|YHA Auckland City||Cnr City Road & Liverpool st 20||HOSTEL||80|
|YHA Auckland International||5 Turner Street PO Box 68-149||Hostel||80|
|St. Martins Waldorf Furnished Apartments||6-12 St. Martins Lane Auckland||Apartment||-|
|Waldorf Tetra||85 Wakefield Street||Apartment||-|
|K Road City Travellers||146 Karangahape road, Auckland City||Hostel||83|
|Marco Polo Backpackers Lodge||2D Hammond Avenue Orewa North||Hostel||-|
|Oakwood Manor||610 Massey Road Mangere Auckland Airport||Hotel||-|
|Auckland City Hotel||157 Hobson Street||Hotel||-|
|Ascot Epsom Motel||92 Great South Rd NewMarket||Hotel||-|
|The Cozy Kiwi||15-31 Wellesley Street||Hostel||-|
|Shooters Saloon Auckland||330 New North rd Kingsland||Hostel||-|
|Waldorf Bankside||8 Bankside Street||Apartment||-|
|Dukes Midway Lodge||4 Vagus Place (off Pah Road) Royal Oak PO Box 24047||Hotel||-|
|Uenuku lodge||217 Ponsonby road Ponsonby||Hostel||79|
|Waldorf Stadium||40 Beach Road||Apartment||-|
|Bella Vista Express Hotel||14 Airpark Drive P O Box 107 068, Airport Oaks||Hotel||-|
|Waldorf Celestion||19-23 Anzac Ave (19 Emily Place)||Apartment||-|
|YMCA Hostel||Corner Pitt street and Greys Avenue||HOSTEL||81|
|Silverfern Backpackers||234 Hobson Street||Hostel||73|
|Mount Richmond Hotel||676 Mt Wellington Highway Mt Wellington||Hotel||-|
|Sudima Auckland Airport||18 Airpark Drive Mangere||Hotel||-|
|Auckland Airport Inn||190 Kirkbride Road Mangere||Hotel||-|
|Columbia||15 Whitaker Place Auckland||APARTMENT||-|
|Econo Lodge City Central||37 Wellesley Street Auckland||HOTEL||-|
|Fat Cat Travellers Community||2A Sherrybrooke Place||HOSTEL||82|
|Ibis Budget Auckland Airport||2 Leonard Isitt Drive Auckland Airport||Hotel||-|
|Kiwi Heritage Homestay||52 West Coast Road Glen Eden||GUESTHOUSE||-|
|The Brown Kiwi Travellers Hostel||7 Prosford Street Ponsonby||HOSTEL||-|
|Verandahs Backpackers Lodge||4-6 Hopetoun Street||HOSTEL||-|
|Arena Hotel||131 Beach Road||Hotel||-|
|Newton Lodge||27 Cross Street, Newton PO BOX 68571, Newton||HOSTEL||-|
|University Hall Auckland||30 Whitaker Place Grafton||HOSTEL||-|
|Kiwi Airport Backpackers||144 McKenzie Road Mangere||HOSTEL||-|
|The Albion Hotel||19 Hobson Street||Hotel||-|
|Allenby Park Hotel||477 great south road Paptoetoe||HOTEL||-|
Internet cafés are widely available throughout New Zealand at rates of around NZ$2-4, though sometimes more in smaller places. Besides internet and e-mail services, most big internet cafés also offer some way for travellers to connect their digital camera and burn cds. Many public libraries have public Internet access, and most of them offer short free internet sessions. Wi-Fi access is getting more and more common in for example coffee places or fast food chains. It is becoming more common for Wi-Fi to be provided at hotels and motels, though sometimes at a fee. Wireless Hotspots are located in many cities and towns all over New Zealand from dedicated Wireless providers from whom you can buy connect time. Many camping holiday parks also have such services available.
See also International Telephone Calls
Dial 111 for emergency police, fire or ambulance services. The worldwide emergency number for GSM mobile phones, 112, can also be used.
The country code is 64.
Most payphones in New Zealand require the use of phone cards for payment and it is getting harder to find payphones that accept coins. As phone cards are available at a lot of outlets, they are easy to purchase and very handy as a backup in case of emergencies. Many of them also accept creditcards. Local calls are free from residential phones and charges for calling outside that area can be found at the front of the regional phone books, amongst many other services.
Mobile telephone coverage is effectively national in near urban areas although the mountainous terrain means that outside the urban areas, and especially away from the main highway system, coverage does have huge dead patches. Do not rely on mobile phones in hilly or mountainous terrain. Mobile telephone users can call 555 only to report Non-emergency traffic safety incidents, such as a breakdown, road hazard or non-injury car crash, to the Police. There are currently three major mobile carriers in New Zealand.
A prepaid sim-card connection pack with $10 credit from Telecom or Vodafone costs around $30, and prepaid sim-cards from 2degrees cost $10. Telecom has broader coverage in remote areas away from major cities compared to Vodafone and 2degrees.
Most areas have dedicated PostShops, however stamps can also be bought at grocery shops, supermarkets and book stores. There are two main formats for domestic mail, namely Standard Post and Fast Post. Fast Post is used next day delivery between major towns and cities (two days from rural areas), whereas Standard Post will take a few working days to deliver nationwide. Standard costs NZ$0.50 for letters/postcards (NZ$0.80 for larger envelopes), Fast Post costs NZ$0.80 (NZ$1.20 for larger envelopes). International mail takes about 3-6 days to Australia (NZ$1.50), and 6-12 days to Europe, Asia and the United States (NZ$2). Post boxes are white, red and black and can be found in many areas throughout towns and cities, including information about when their contents are collected. Most post offices and smaller post shops have opening hours from 9:00am to 5:00pm Monday to Friday, and 9:00am to 12:30pm on Saturday. You can buy stamps here, or at newsagents and general stores. For parcels, you can use the NZ Post or otherwise courier companies like TNT, DHL, UPS or FedEx.
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