What to do and see in Auckland, North Island: The Best Outdoor Activities

August 1, 2021 Leida Jutras

The Māori call Auckland Tāmaki Makaurau — a maiden desired by 100 lovers, and a valuable territory fought over for centuries for its fertile land and natural harbors on the Pacific Ocean (to the east) and Tasman Sea (to the west). Today, it’s New Zealand’s largest city: A vibrant and diverse place where nature and urban life go hand-in- hand, with 48 volcanic cones, more than 50 islands, and 29,000 km of coastline and beaches just minutes away from the arts and shopping of the central city.
Restaurants in Auckland

1. North Western Cycleway

Auckland New Zealand
Excellent
100%
Good
0%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 2 reviews

North Western Cycleway

2. Horse Riding Warkworth

42 Kaipara Flats Road, Warkworth, Auckland 0981 New Zealand +64 9-425 8517 http://www.horseridingwarkworth.co.nz
Excellent
88%
Good
11%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 74 reviews

Horse Riding Warkworth

Reviewed By J5631WElaural

We had an unforgettable experience. As a family with young kids who had never ridden I was a bit nervous at first but the staff were absolute professionals. They matched us with the perfect horses and were right by our sides the whole time. They all made sure we felt comfortable and safe and that we had a fun time. We also could see how much they loved the horses. My kids are still talking about the fun they had that day. Thank you for a wonderful experience.

3. Key Summit Track

Milford Road The Divide, State Highway 94 , Fiordland National Park, Milford, Auckland New Zealand +64 3-249 7924 [email protected] http://www.doc.govt.nz/link/66d12e7145034fce8619792a1443448e.aspx
Excellent
80%
Good
18%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 45 reviews

Key Summit Track

Always check the website for changes that might affect your trip. See website for the price of accommodation on this track.

Reviewed By mcmoscato - Annandale, United States

Key Summit is an outstanding easy excursion from the Milford Road or a quick side-trip from the Routeburn Track. The climb to Key Summit begins at The Divide trailhead, and starts on the Routeburn Track heading toward the Lake Howden and Lake Mackenzie Huts. The track is well graded and passes through pleasant forest with limited views. After a gradual climb a signed intersection points the way to the Key Summit Track, which veers above the Routeburn. The smooth track heads uphill via a series of moderate switchbacks. As the trail emerges from the forest, there are outstanding views down the Hollyford Valley as a taste of the more expansive views to come. Near the top of the climb the trail forks as part of a worthwhile nature loop. The route meanders on the high summit ridge, past beautiful tarns and with many outstanding viewpoints. The turnaround point is the Lake Marian Viewpoint, where you can just see Lake Marian perched in a high hanging valley in the Darran Mountains across the Hollyford Valley. After completing the summit nature loop, head back down the way you came. It's about 4-5 miles in total ~ 2 hours and while steep in some places not a hard hike and rewarding with magnificent views

4. Fourforty Mountain Bike Park

521 Kawakawa-Orere Road, Orere Point, Auckland 2585 New Zealand +64 21 704 889 [email protected] http://www.fourfortymtbpark.co.nz/
Excellent
94%
Good
0%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
6%
Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 16 reviews

Fourforty Mountain Bike Park

5. Aotea Track

Whangaparapara Road, Auckland, Great Barrier Island New Zealand +64 9-379 6476 [email protected] http://www.doc.govt.nz/link/2ae1915a4d054e109d267a552c4ac41f.aspx
Excellent
75%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
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Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 24 reviews

Aotea Track

Always check the website for changes that might affect your trip. See website for the price of accommodation on this track.

Reviewed By Rain464

I did a variation of the Aotea Track at the end of May 2020. Stayed at the Great Barrier Lodge (highly recommended) at the start and end of the track. I highly recommend bringing along your hiking poles. It was pretty wet when I went, but it is pretty slippery clay so probably good to have them any time of the year. Entered near Green Campsite and did the Whitey Track (lots of ups and downs). Then joined the Forest Road towards Port Fitzroy. Turned off onto the South Fork Track. There had been a lot of rainfall when I went and I had to walk across the river about 7 times getting my boots nice and wet. So if you want to keep your feet dry do not go this way! The markers are a bit hard to find when you are walking in the river. Took about two hours as stated to get to Mt Heale Hut (I used to be pretty fast). Total time on the track walking about 6 hours. Great views at Mt Heale Hut. Propane burners provided but NO stove for heat. Nice new hut. On the second day walked down to the hot springs which were fab and then out to the road where I successfully hitch hiked back to the lodge. Great trip! Will do it again!

6. Mt Hobson via Windy Canyon

Aotea Road Top of Whangapoua Hill, Auckland, Great Barrier Island New Zealand http://www.doc.govt.nz
Excellent
87%
Good
13%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
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Overall Ratings

5.0 based on 15 reviews

Mt Hobson via Windy Canyon

Reviewed By kiwitreks - Masterton, New Zealand

Well worth the effort to see the amazing views. The tracks are very well done and built in steps make up a lot of the steeper parts. Some of these are narrow and a bit trickier to navigate coming down, may not be ideal for those with koi bad knees. Lots of opportunity for stunning photos. Recommend taking water and a backpack (potentially some snacks as well). Also going earlier or later in the day when it’s cooler as a large portion of the track is exposed with lower growing scrub so little to no shade.

7. Auckland Zoo

100 Motions Road Western Springs, Auckland Central, Auckland 1022 New Zealand +64 9-360 3800 [email protected] http://www.aucklandzoo.co.nz/
Excellent
56%
Good
32%
Satisfactory
8%
Poor
2%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 3,513 reviews

Auckland Zoo

Auckland Zoo is home to the largest collection of native and exotic animals in New Zealand, set in 17 hectares of lush parkland and just minutes from central Auckland. Auckland Zoo is open every day (except Christmas Day) from 9.30am.

Reviewed By 795hana_

I have seen already several ZOOs around the world and this one is one of my favourite. Besides that you can see some rare animals like red panda, or kiwi bird ( where else ????), it is also visible, that they really take care and love those animals there. Currently there is freshly born small red panda and zebra. Recommended not only for kids, but for everyone who likes animals.

8. Bethells Beach

Auckland Central, Auckland New Zealand http://regionalparks.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/tehengabethells
Excellent
66%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 331 reviews

Bethells Beach

Reviewed By 155richard81 - Tauranga, New Zealand

This is a great sandy beach. The car park is a little way from the beach and one has to be aware of when high tide is as the access is restricted at high tide.

9. Woodhill Mountain Bike Park

Restall Road, Woodhill, Auckland New Zealand +64 27 278 0949 [email protected] http://www.bikeparks.co.nz
Excellent
65%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
2%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 89 reviews

Woodhill Mountain Bike Park

Reviewed By _moniquedk2008 - Auckland Central, New Zealand

Visited Woodhill Bike Park as first time riders, we were pleasantly surprised to find the challenging yet fun beginners course. We were able to go around several times until we were too exhausted to continue. Found fellow riders very patient and friendly. Big shout out to the wonderful guys at Woodhill Bike Park. Great customer service (with a smile) from the initial phone call to book the bikes to the last goodbye. Thank you very much!

10. Piha Beach

Piha, Auckland New Zealand
Excellent
68%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 867 reviews

Piha Beach

Reviewed By F5666SPalicec

This day with guide Jo was loads of fun. It was truly amazing to drive one hour out of Auckland and experience the glorious Wild West Coast. The walks and the beach were stunning and the food at the Piha cafe has excellent. Jo was a very friendly and knowledgeable guide.

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