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Top Rated Attractions in Auckland

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Piha Beach

Piha Beach, on the wild Tasman coast, is famous for the Lion Rock vistas, black sand beaches, great surf and deadly rips. If you venture into the water, do so only between the lifeguard flags. Changing rooms, a shop and campground are available. If coming in summer, bring plenty of sunscreens and a hat as it can be blistering hot on the black sand. The beach is also spectacular on a wild, windy day. From north Piha, there are walking tracks to more secluded beaches.

Waiheke Island

Surrounded by the water, Waiheke Island is known to be the second-largest island of the Hauraki Gulf. With an abundance of caves, the island branches into several peninsulas, breaking up the coast into a series of bays. The island's beaches are spotless and a popular choice for family picnics. Visitors may also wander around the island along the various trails that riddle its cliffs and slopes. Waiheke houses many art galleries and sports facilities, as well as a cinema, a theater and various wineries. Waiheke Island's prime attractions include the Whakanewha Regional Park, the Waiheke Community Art Gallery, the Oneroa Bay, Onetangi Beach and the Cascades Waterfall.

Kitekite Falls

Located in the heart of Piha's tropical forests is Kitekite Falls, a beautiful tri-level 40 meter (131 feet) waterfall that that flows into a pristine pool. After a comfortable trek through lush forests, visitors are rewarded with the sight of gorgeous white ribbons of cascading water bordered by tall towering trees and Nikau Palms. Take along a picnic and enjoy it on the banks of the pool after a refreshing swim. The adventurous can swim under the falls to emerge behind the sheet of tumbling water. This place is great for a casual hike or a picnic with family and friends and should not be missed.

Rangitoto Island

At 260 meters (850 feet), Rangitoto is Auckland's largest and youngest volcano. It last erupted over 600 years ago and is covered in regenerating forests and barren lava flows. Views from the summit are incredible on a clear day, with vistas to Kawau Island to the north and Great Barrier and Little Barrier to the north-east. Access to this volcanic island is provided by ferry and a 45-minute walk up the well-maintained track leads to the summit. A tractor and trailer, booked in conjunction with the ferry, also goes up to the summit.

Auckland Domain

Just a short walk east from the city center, Auckland Domain is among New Zealand's oldest municipal parks. Founded in 1843, the Domain features the Auckland War Memorial Museum, an outdoor fernery and the splendid Wintergardens, a band rotunda, sculptures, lush lawns, kiosks and more. Additionally, the park is home to numerous notable memorials. Apart from inviting leisurely pursuits, the Domain also serves as a venue for prominent events such as Christmas in the Park, during which spectators come together for a night of music and fireworks.

Fo Guang Shan Temple

Fo Guang Shan Temple is a beautiful example of Asian temple architecture and is a place of true peace and serenity. The temple welcomes visitors and features fantastic and awe-inspiring statues of Buddha, well-maintained grounds, a small eatery that serves delicious meals, and a souvenir shop. Prayer services are frequently conducted for the religious. A visit to the Fo Guang Shan Temple is definitely a must when in the city.

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