More than just New Zealand’s biggest metropolis, the greater Auckland Region incorporates both the city itself, as well as a myriad of smaller towns, rural areas and landscapes. Fiery by definition, the Auckland Region is home to 49 volcanoes. The oldest is 150,000 years old, with the last eruption occurring 600 years ago. Today, the volcanic landscape makes for stunning natural scenery. Cones and craters pepper the landscape, with lush rainforests, bubbling thermal springs and rugged beaches thrown in for good measure.
The city of Auckland serves as a great base for exploring the wider region. For some of New Zealand’s most stunning coastal scenery, the Haruki Gulf is a must. The 4000-square kilometre area is home to gorgeous islands like Waikeke, which boasts an incredible boutique winemaking scene. To the north is Goat Island Marine Reserve, New Zealand’s first oceanic national park.
By far, the best way to explore the wider Auckland Region is by car or motorhome. The North Island’s road networks are fantastic, with rental vehicles unlocking superlative freedom. The city itself is well serviced by public transport, with long-distance buses and coaches also running throughout the region.
Despite its small footprint, the Auckland Region is New Zealand’s most populated district. It’s home to almost 24% of the country’s Maori population, which makes it a great place to experience New Zealand’s deep-rooted indigenous culture. It’s also a melting pot for other ethnic populations and is a celebration of New Zealand’s cultural diversity.