After living in Auckland for a while, you start to get frustrated with the lack of activities to do in the city, especially the lack of budget friendly ones. We don’t own a car in New Zealand, so we can’t just drive and explore the area when we have nothing to do. Usually we don’t end up doing anything just because we are tired of spending money in expensive Auckland. I’ve put together a list of things to do in the city that are budget friendly, to avoid this dreadful problem! They are great to do whether you have been in Auckland for a while, or if you’re just passing through for the weekend and you happen to be reaching that budget limit. You can do most of these activities by using public transport, which makes them very convenient if you do not have access to a car! If you are looking for things to do in Auckland, have read of this list, all of which I have personally done and enjoyed while living in the city.
1. Auckland Domain & Wintergardens
- This is an amazing place to visit at all times of the year. There is quite a bit to do and see, including an insanely beautiful greenhouse full of flowers and plants. Best part is, it is completely free!!
2. Hike Rangitoto
- Another activity we did within our first few weeks of living in Auckland was hiking the volcano Rangitoto. It is free to hike, however the only way to get there is by ferry which costs about $30. It’s a fairly easy hike and has great views of the city.
3. Go to the Auckland Zoo
- I’ve been to my fair share of zoos, and the Auckland zoo is pretty good. It only costs $28 for an adult ticket and $12 for a child. There are discounts for students and seniors as well. We had a good day and enjoyed the animals.
4. Go to an All Blacks game
- This may be an activity more on the pricey side, but there are always ways to get the cost down. If you go to a non-rival game or purchase nose bleed seats, it shouldn’t cost much. However, the All Blacks games are very popular and normally cost a lot more than other teams.
5. Head to the Farmers Markets
- Farmer’s markets are great places to go to pass the time and check out the local produce. There’s a few around Auckland CBD that are popular – Parnell and Grey Lynn being more common. Just like any other farmer’s markets, there’s food and local products galore.
6. Check out Current Festivals & Events
- Auckland always has some sort of festival going on, such as a comedy fest, food, wine, movie, arts, writing, etc. There are often events happening at Shed 10 on the wharf as well, like health and wellness events (yoga, workout, etc), or speakers. Always check out what’s happening at the wharf as most activities/events are free or really cheap.
7. Climb Mount Eden & Enjoy a Picnic
- Mount Eden is a nice place to get away and have a break with a nice view. We watched the fireworks from up there, but would be perfect for a picnic in the afternoon.
8. Explore Ponsonby Road: Eat & Shop
- We lived on a street off Ponsonby road and we were regulars in this part of town. Ponsonby road has so much to offer, from amazing restaurants to the latest shopping trends. You can spend all day here, and would have no problem finding a place to eat for every meal.
9. Check out Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium
- This is a fun aquarium and is perfect to escape boredom or the heat in the city. The ticket prices range around $30 for an adult, but have a lot of discount options.
10. Explore Piha: Waterfalls, Walks, & Beaches
- When someone comes to visit me in Auckland, this is the number one activity I insist on doing. It is a bit further outside of the city (about 45 minutes), so you do need a car, but it is definitely worth it. The waterfalls and beaches near Piha are so cool and everyone I take loves it. It is a great change from the city views, as it is on the coast and very rural.