Known as the “city of sails,” cosmopolitan Auckland is renowned for its nautical lifestyle, boasting more boats per capita than any other city in the world. The focal point of New Zealand's biggest city, is the aptly-named Waitemata Harbour, which means “sea of sparkling waters” in Maori. The picturesque area, which hosted the 2000 and 2003 America’s Cup, is lively by day with yachts and water sports. The harbour bustles at night when locals flock to the bars, clubs and restaurants that have sprouted in the redeveloped Viaduct Basin during the last decade. It's a great place to enjoy local seafood and produce, sample Asian-Pacific cuisine and try award-winning local wines.
Auckland enjoys an awe-inspiring setting, surrounded by volcanic hills and lush forests and located on a narrow peninsula with the Pacific Ocean on one side and the Tasman Sea on the other. Many visitors book flights to Auckland to use the city as a base from which to explore. From Stanley Bay, you can reach more than 100 beaches within an hour's drive.