Auckland and Harbour Cruise...New Zealand

Haere Mai ~ Welcome to Auckland...the City of Sails.

So let's begin to get to know Auckland...
It is famous for its beautiful twin harbours and the scenic Hauraki Gulf Islands, New Zealand's largest city combines the very best of city and country living. 
There is something for everyone to enjoy in this cosmopolitan city.


Auckland City centre is situated 21 kilometres (14 miles) from the airport and takes approximately 45 minutes. I'll just briefly mention the weather...it's not a problem if like me you come from Melbourne because I hardly noticed any difference plus it's just as changeable! 
The city feels safe and I was extremely impressed with how polite everyone seemed to be.

Auckland offers a great deal from a sparkling harbour, scenic offshore islands, rugged ranges, wineries and beautiful beaches...
The heart of Auckland's CBD is based around Queen Street and surrounding streets. 

The Sky Tower seen in the photo below is the Southern Hemisphere's tallest!


As we wandered around the city we came upon the Auckland Diwali Festival of Lights celebrations. 
Diwali is an ancient Hindu festival and one of India's best loved festival. It is a time for celebration for people in India and Indians living abroad, where families light lamps, candles and fireworks to symbolise the triumph of light over darkness, and the renewal of life.



Traditional and comtemporary dance and music...plus activities, entertainment, food and many stalls selling colourful wares.

It's a pity you can't smell the aroma being carried on the breeze....
All the food presented was vegetarian. We tested the samosa and they passed the test ;D
(Samosa is a fried or baked pastry with a savoury filling such as spiced potatoes, onions, peas, lentils,
and can have ground chicken or lamb as an option)

Everyone had dressed up in their finery....can you believe the length of this braid?

Walking down Queens Street to the Harbour...
I don't think you can see very well from this shot but there's a flame coming out of the rock on the left...it was rather blowy at the time I took this...hence I got sprayed with the water from the fountain. 
 
After walking around enjoying the sights... 

We decided to try out the harbour cruise

Unfortunately, not on any of these vessels...
we caught the standard ferry but it did a great tour and the commentary from the Captain was quite entertaining....

It was rather blowy and it certainly blew the cobwebs off...so much so my hubby had to hold onto his toupee!
LOL...couldn't resist that...now I'll see if he reads this post...
he'll go up like a rocket if he does ;D


In fact we took two cruises...one of which stopped off at Devonport Island.

 Devonport is a picturesque seaside village only minutes away from downtown Auckland.
The stunning peninsula is a magnet for artists and craftspeople plus the very impressive collection of beautiful
restored Victorian villas.
Some even for sale which caught our eye... ;D

There are also a number of attractive little churches on the way to Mt Victoria.


Devonport is home to the Royal New Zealand Navy and the Victoria Picture Palace & Theatre is the earliest purpose-built cinema still in existence in the Southern Hemisphere. Now there's a few facts thrown in!
You can also explore Devonport's military history at North Head and the Torpedo Bay Navy Museum.
Yes...you guess it we HAD to visit the museum...but there was a time limit set before I walked over the doorstep.
(I have photos but haven't down loaded them yet...I'll do this tomorrow if I get a chance ~ sorry
I've been using two cameras and my phone to capture everything...
this holiday malarky can be both stressful and tiring!

Then arriving back after our cruise we needed a little light refreshment...
easy to say but it's not easy to choose when there are so many great cafes and bars to choose from...


We decided on an Irish bar in the end...very lively and the smell drew us in...



Well fed and watered we finally wandered back to our accommodation...
which I'll have to tell you about on another day.
I'm aware that this post has been rather long...but hey when you're on holiday you have to pack a lot into your day



https://secure.quebles.com/content/hotmail/emoticons/1508618.gif

I hope you do too...have fun and I'll see you soon.
We're leaving Auckland and moving on again...come and join us!