Monday, February 1, 2010

Auckland: Water, Water, Everywhere

If you’re RVing through New Zealand in a campervan, renting a car and staying in hotels, or just poking around Auckland, you’ll find water everywhere. Surrounded by water, Auckland, the City of Sails, has much to offer if you like boats, maritime history, or just plain sea life.

Sky Tower
Pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month
Photo by: Beejayge

Near the Ferry Berth on Quay and Hobson Streets, the New Zealand Maritime Museum covers Kiwi maritime history from the Maori migration to modern day cup sailing. You can check out the boats, life-sized exhibits, or collection of models and artifacts on a guided tour or poke around on your own with an Audio Guide. If you'd like to get out on the water, the museum's Ted Ashby sails Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. The SS Puke and Breeze sail most weekends.
Auckland Waterfront
Photo by: Beejaygee

The waterfront itself is a good place to spend an afternoon. Ferries come and go as well as other interesting boats. My first trip to New Zealand in 1985, I wandered the docks and visited with one of the crew of the damaged Greenpeace ship, Rainbow Warrior, which was lashed to the dock. The Rainbow Warrior had been ripped by two bombs killing one crew member, Fernando Pereira. The French government had ordered the bombing. The Rainbow Warrior crew have since scattered around the world. Today, the Rainbow Warrior is a living reef off the Cavalli Islands in Northland.
Penguins at Kelly Tarlton's
Photo by: Beejayge

Probably the only place you'll find snow and ice in Auckland is Kelly Tarlton's Under Water World. South of Central Auckland on Tamaki Drive, you can time travel back to visit a life-size replica hut of Captain Robert Falcon Scott, the South Pole explorer. Then, visit a penguin colony in an antarctic snow cat. In Underwater World, you can view the sea life while traveling through a clear tunnel on a moving walkway. If you want a closer view of the sharks, you can get nose to nose with one. A professional dive instructor will help you meet the sharks. You'll get a lot wetter than you would on a ride through the tunnel, so bring a towel.

Maybe you don’t want to rub noses with a fish, but you’d still like to get a little sand in your shorts and meet new friends. November to March each year, Auckland’s Stroke & Stride Series invites locals and visitors to enter one or all of eight swim/run events. Swim in Waitemata Harbour Bay then run along Auckland’s waterfront dripping salt water– and maybe win a prize.
Good Morning Auckland
Photo by: Beejayge

You’re never far from water in Auckland, so dig into New Zealand maritime history, take a boat trip, or at least take off your shoes and get your feet wet.
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All photos are by Bryan Goddard who lives in Auckland, New Zealand. Bryan has more than 1,000 photos uploaded on flickr. Click back on his links and you’ll find a slideshow of  his many New Zealand photos. On BeeJayGe, his website, you can find more photos of his New Zealand travels and a link to his blog.

Lyn Harris

RVin NZ: How to Spend Your Winters South in New Zealand


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Anonymous said...

I just realized you can click on the name under the picture and make them bigger. Pretty nifty. I especially like those penguins all dressed up in their grey coats posing for their portrait. Very nice blog. I enjoy spending time just dreaming.
Amy Thornton

Anonymous said...

Hi, I discovered a website just before clicking here - its called
Its a conglomerate for small tourism companies. I was reading your blog and thought it might be of interest to some of your readers.
Ps: love the blog thanks. JP

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the link to the Interislander. I planned to visit both islands: rental car and staying in motels. I had no idea I couldn't take some rental vehicles on the ferry. Changed my mind, anyway. I'm buying one since I think it will be cheaper.
Nice blog with good information.

Anonymous said...

We are staying 3 weeks and decided to go with a hire company. Other than finding a vehicle we can take on the ferry, is there anaything else to worry about?

Lyn said...

Rental companies are not all the same. Ask for a copy of the rental agreement and compare them at home before you make your final decision. Insurance is not valid unless you stick to the rental agreement. Some insurance companies will let you post a bond up front to lower the amount if you damage the car. There's also some roads you're not covered on if you have an accident.
Check the credit card you'll be using to see if it will cover part of the damage if you use the card to book the rental. This might lower part of your insurance cost.

Anonymous said...

Watch for late fees from some hire companies. Some are pricey, some are lenient. If you're an hour late with some companies, you might have to pay for an additional day.