Auckland is very much a land of beautiful parks and gardens. You won’t need to stray too far to enjoy its incredible showcase of grassy plains, flowery blooms and family-friendly farmlands. But to help you discover some of the best in the region, here are nine natural locations that are guaranteed to freshen up your New Zealand visit.
Auckland Domain Wintergarden
The city’s oldest park is also home to an exquisite collection of plants and flowers. The Wintergarden makes its prominent appearance right at the heart of the Domain. It is made up of two Victorian-style glass houses, which are connected by a beautiful courtyard with sculptures and a luscious pond.
Auckland Botanic Gardens
The Auckland Botanic Gardens is home to more than 10,000 plants and flowers from all over the world. Anyone who passes through the garden’s plains will marvel at its 64-hectare showcase of exotic and native plant life. If you’re travelling with kids, make sure to take them to the Dinosaurs in the Garden exhibits.
Waitawa Regional Park
This park is actually far enough from the bustling city life to be a strong contender for a day trip. You could even do some overnight camping, if you wanted to. The Waitawa Regional Park is located in Kawakawa Bay, approximately 50 kilometres (31 miles) south-east of central Auckland. It’s a great place for swimming, walking, mountain biking, and taking in those quintessential Kiwi countryside views.
Parnell Rose Gardens
You’ll find this breathtaking mantle of roses right in the midst of Parnell village. The Parnell Rose Gardens is also known as the Dove-Myer Robinson Park, and it houses an incredible variety of flower blooms and native trees. There is also a barbecue area on-site, as well as plenty of places to sit and soak up the surrounding scenery.
Omeru Reserve is a scenic historic marvel right outside of Kaukapakapa, a town 50 kilometres (31 miles) north-west of Auckland city. It’s a great place to explore on any given day – you’ll be exposed to stunning streams, breathtaking waterfalls, and remarkable Maori heritage sites.
Shakespear Regional Park
A pest-free habitat, and a popular wildlife sanctuary. Shakespear Regional Park is renowned for its coastal views, hiking trails, lovely beaches, rich forested plains and remarkable pastures. If you don’t have access to a car, or you simply don’t feel like driving, there are daily buses from downtown Auckland that will take you to the park entrance.
With more than 216 hectares worth of forest and farmland to play with, Totara Park is the ideal getaway for nature lovers. The South Auckland based reserve is filled with biking trails and walking tracks that will appease the most active souls. There are also tennis courts and a playground in its vicinity.
Monte Cecilia Park
Monte Cecilia Park is located on the suburb of Hillsborough. It is home to a disc golf course and the TSB Bank Wallace Arts Centre, which houses a collection of contemporary art. If that wasn’t enough, the park is packed with an array of walking tracks, polished lawns, incredible trees and lovely views.
Ambury Regional Park
The Ambury Regional Park, just over the Mangere Bridge, is another local gem that aptly packs coastal scenery, country life and parkland onto one single location. Visitors can interact with the park’s farm animals, take a stroll along the Kiwi Esplanade, observe the native birds or simply admire the nearby rock formations.