The reasons for people wanting to head to Auckland are plenty, but the reasons to head out on a day trip from the city are arguably even more numerous. From remarkable landscapes, scenes from movie lore and beautiful waterfalls, it’s certainly hard to know where to start if you’re going for a week, let alone a short break.
Here are three of the top day trips for those of you struggling to decide your absolute must-do’s…
Go on a tour of the volcanoes
In a city which is home to over 50 volcanoes nearby, seeing the sights is a great way to spend a day. These volcanoes are not expected to erupt again in this area and originate from a magma source located 100-kilometres underneath the surface. If you don’t fancy spending the full day touring the volcanoes, then look out for the many half-day tours available too. Even on these shorter trips, you can admire the views from high vantage points, look out for unique wildlife, eat lunch at Mangere Bridge, and hike the various hills on the trail – including the spectacular Mt Eden.
Take a boat trip through the Waitomo Caves and experience the Lord of the Rings Hobbiton Movie Set
This is without doubt one of the most popular day trips in the city. Year upon year, vast amounts of people are drawn to Auckland in a bid to tick this off their bucket list. For movie fans, it’s a must. You can do these as separate trips but there are also day trips available where you can see them both in one day.
Firstly, a boat takes you through the Waitomo Caves to witness Glowworm grotto, home to a population only found in New Zealand. You don’t have to be a Lord of the Rings fan to appreciate this part of the trip! You’ll then be taken to the famous movie set to have a day wandering through the familiar sights of the Shire and touring the 44 hobbit holes on the Hobbiton movie set. Not to be missed!
Go and see the waterfalls at Waitakere Ranges
If you enjoy getting away from the crowds to a more remote location, the Waitakere Ranges are only 40 minutes away but still deliver on enjoyable isolation. The grand waterfalls to look out for include Karekare, Kitekite and Fairy Falls. Their location on Auckland’s west coast means that there is a vast coastline and 16,000 hectares of rainforests to explore.