Have a layover in Auckland? Consider extending it to two days like I did! If you’re headed to Wellington or the even South Island of New Zealand, Auckland is the perfect city to kick off or end your adventure in. I thought 48 hours was the perfect amount of time to tour the city all the while checking a ton of amazing restaurants off my list.
Watch the video below and read ahead for ideas on what to do with 48 hours in Auckland, New Zealand.
What To Do
- Auckland Free Walking Tours: I always say walking is the best way to explore a new city, and this free tour will give you a history lesson while you get those steps in! Additionally, if you are new to solo travel tours like these are a perfect way to meet other travelers and get a more personal connection to the city. Tours are always free, entertaining, and insightful ,but don’t forget to tip your guides a the end.
- Exploring Ponsonby: Ponsonby was my homebase and it was such a cute neighborhood. It had an amazing array of restaurants, cafes, and shopping. Tons of clothing stores and even a Mecca Cosmetica! Ponsonby Central was one of my favorite gems I stumbled upon, it’s a marketplace packed with many restaurants, specialty food shops, and picturesque flower stands.
- Shopping on Queen Street: for something a little more centrally located, Queen Street has quite a few souvenir shops, department stores, and fast fashion boutiques to choose from. Since this was my first trip to the Southern Hemisphere, I had to check out some of the local favorites like Farmers, Glassons, and Cotton On.
What To Eat
- Little Bird Unbakery: this spot was literally just up the road from my Airbnb and it was so good I was considering coming back for another meal. If you like raw, vegan, and healthy
options, you need to come here. The salad and iced matcha latte I had here were absolutely scrumptious.
- Wolf Coffee: cute little coffee counter situated in a shipping container in the Queens Wharf. Fuel up here before taking the walking tour.
- Federal & Wolfe: this place had the most insane avocado toast I’ve ever seen, which left me one happy customer. Such a cool cafe in the heart of Auckland CBD.
- Depot: if you fancy local oysters and wine, this spot is it. Although there was no happy hour pricing, this would be the perfect spot to enjoy some light bites and drinks after a long day of either touring or work.
- Major Sprout: adorable cafe with tons of healthy and Instagram-worthy brunch options. I just loved this entire place and its aesthetic.
- Best Ugly Bagels: perhaps one of the most noteworthy local brands I became familiar with in NZ! I visited their outpost both in Auckland and the Wellington airport, but you may see their bagels served in cafes and shops all over the country. The bagels are very different from New York style, so they have their own unique flair. You can pretty much top them with anything you want, in a hipster-but-friendly atmosphere.
Have you been to New Zealand before? Auckland was my first stop on my trip to the North Island last November. I am already itching to go back to explore the South Island.