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Auckland's waterside location has fostered the locals' love affair with the sea, earning this place thenickname "City of Sails".Auckland sprawls over a narrow isthmus between the sparkling waters of the Waitemata and Manukau Harbours. A cloak of rainforest covers the surrounding hills, dozens of dormant volcanic cones dot the landscape and enchanting holiday islands are scattered throughout the vast Hauraki Gulf. Two of the best island getaways are Waiheke Island and Great Barrier IslandHighlights

Auckland has so much to see and do - there's plenty of entertainment for a few hours, a few days or a few weeks. Here's a taste of some of Auckland's unique activities:

Rangitoto Island Walk or ride to the summit of Rangitoto, the lava rock sleeping volcano in the middle of the Hauraki Gulf. 

Rangitoto emerged from the sea in a fiery explosion around 600 years ago and now is an iconic jewel in the Auckland harbour.

Island escapes,Enjoy wine and olive tasting, lazing on the beach and art trails on laid back Waiheke Island, a 35 minute ferry ride from downtown Auckland. Or escape to the wilderness of Great Barrier Island, with bush tracks leading to natural hot springs and historic kauri tree dams.

On the water ,Take a cruise on a chartered launch or classic yacht on the Waitemata Harbour. Or go racing on an America's Cup yacht, take a dolphin-spotting excursion or a gentle ferry ride to a seaside suburb.

Culture and heritage,See the biggest collection of Maori taonga (treasures) in the world at Auckland War Memorial Museum, 

plus see a performance of traditional Maori songs and dances. Learn about New Zealand's unique flora and fauna, and the European settlers who shaped its colonial heritage.

Sky Tower,Jump off the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere – SkyJump is 192 metres of cable-controlled base jumping from the Sky Tower. Alternatively walk around the outside of the tower with SkyWalk, or just admire the view from the safety of the observation deck and restaurants.

Kelly Tarlton's Antarctic Encounter and Underwater World

Spend a day at Kelly Tarlton's and discover the unique sea life that lives in and around New Zealand's waters. 

Walk through an underwater glass tunnel, see real life King and Gentoo penguins or for the brave at heart, swim with stingrays and sharks!

Auckland Harbour Bridge,Spanning the Waitemata Harbour, the Auckland Harbour Bridge offers spectacular views of Auckland city and the islands of the gulf. To admire these views and get the heart racing, climb over the bridge or bungy jump off it!