New Zealand’s coasts and their accompanying beaches couldn’t be further alike if they tried. On the east, you can enjoy sinking your toes into pristine white sand before taking a dip into calm and clear waters. On the west, beach-goers will discover endless stretches of black, sparkling sands on the cusp of wild waves. Auckland, based around 2 large harbours, is a major city in the north of New Zealand’s North Island. In the centre, the iconic Sky Tower has views of Viaduct Harbour, which is full of superyachts and lined with bars and cafes. Our experience starts by stretching the length of the Central Auckland easterly waterfront, the Tamaki Drive cruise to Achilles Point is a hallmark of the 09 region. Numerous beaches, sweeping views of Devonport, Rangitoto and other Gulf islands, flash houses to gawk at and plentiful options for a bite to eat (or let’s be realistic, an ice cream stop off) dot its length - Mission Bay, Kohi, St Heliers and more. This revitalised waterfront precinct is brimming with the energy of locals and visitors of all ages. So too, green space is abound with parks and reserves liberally spread along its length - Bastion Point and Achilles Point being the two standout options, providing many an Instagram or Facebook opportunity. Venture a little further and you’ll stumble upon Auckland’s oldest suburb, Parnell Village, is known for its fabulous restaurants, quaint cafes, diverse galleries and shopping districts, and is definitely a top spot to explore whilst in the area. Besides the beautiful surroundings, entering Auckland Domain will surprise you at how big it is, and how many beautiful spots there are to just sit down and relax! Also, there is a duck pond which has a fountain in it, and that makes for happy ducks! The excellent Auckland Museum is also found within Auckland Domain. Sitting on the green grass surrounded by the pink flowers, you could only hear the birds and feel the gentle wind blow your face. Travel through to reach out to its highest volcano in Auckland on Mt Eden. Just a 45-minute drive down the coast, the west coast of Auckland stretches for miles and miles of unreal beauty. If you feel like a change from the blue sky and white sand of our east coast beaches, explore the untouched beauty of the Wild West Auckland’s Wild West is famous for its rugged beautiful coastline. The place where the Tasman Sea’s mighty surf crashes onto unique black sand beaches. Travel to the Arataki visitor centre, an information centre built high on the ridge of the Waitakere Ranges. From here you get breath-taking panoramic views across the rain forest to Auckland’s two harbours. We stop at a stunning viewpoint overlooking Piha beach and the Tasman Sea before going down to the black sand beach. There you get the chance to stroll along one of the most awe-inspiring beaches the world has to offer and watch the surf waves rolling in. Piha is popular with experienced surfers, but it’s also a wonderful spot for picnics, relaxing walks and swims – under the watchful eye of the famous Piha Surf Club. See Lion Rock, a small island that stands in the middle of the beach.