For a winter escape combining the great outdoors with cosy fireside dining, cultural activities and family-friendly fun, Auckland is the perfect pick, and the team at the downtown Avani Auckland Metropolis Residences has the inside scoop on the hottest spots to hit this winter.
From hiking and biking to restaurants, events and local treasures, here are Avani’s top 10 suggestions for a winter’s stay in the cosmopolitan heart of New Zealand’s North Island.
For easy access to the city’s key attractions whether on foot, on public transport or by car, a downtown location is key. Avani Auckland Metropolis Residences, Auckland’s tallest residential building, enjoys an idyllic location beside Albert Park, so guests can easily access the city’s best entertainment, eateries, and the great outdoors.
There’s no shortage of cosy restaurants to settle into with a warming wine in Auckland. Head to Commercial Bay to visit Ahi for native ingredients and Maori cooking with a contemporary twist, or The Lodge Bar and Dining, where you can snuggle up with hide throws over your chair and plenty of blankets to cuddle up to. Siso is the spot for a comforting Mediterranean meal by a roaring fireplace.
Storybook high tea
A tranquil spot with waterfalls and flowers galore, Eden Garden could have been plucked from your favourite fairy tale. A high tea here is an unforgettable addition to any Auckland stay, and who can say no to fresh scones with jam and cream with a warm cuppa on a chilly afternoon?
Live like a local
Tucked away in the CBD, cobblestoned Chancery Square is a treasured local secret and the perfect spot to stop for a coffee, cupcake, and a spot of boutique shopping. Delish Cupcakes and Caffe Torino are popular picks.
Let it snow
Move over Queenstown, Auckland has its very own winter-ready slopes at Snow Planet, New Zealand’s only indoor snow park. Featuring 8,000 square metres of slow, this is the perfect spot to take a ski lesson, learn to snowboard, play winter games, or have an epic snow fight with mates.
Take a dip
Yes, it’s winter and the harbour is a tad chilly, but you can still don your swimmers in one of the many hot pools near Auckland, such as Kaitoke Hot Springs, which is a 35-minute ferry ride away on Great Barrier Island, or Parakai Springs, the same distance but by road, which offers plenty of spots for a warm dip, including indoor, open-air and adults-only pools – as well as hydroslides to keep the young ones out of trouble.
Still in Parakai, Palm Springs is home to large pools heated to a balmy forty degrees, as well as shallow options and semi-private rock pools made for serious soaking.
Don’t fancy leaving the hotel? No sweat, take your dip in the hotel’s indoor pool then lounge about with a book instead.
An impressive 328-metres tall, Auckland’s Sky Tower is New Zealand’s tallest man-made structure with 360 views for kilometres. It’s a prime spot for a celebration dinner at either Orbit Dining, or the Sugar Club, or a spot of stretching up high with a class from Yoga in the Sky.
Hikes and bikes
Auckland is lucky to have an extensive network of bike paths, and electric bikes are available to hire near the hotel (9 Gore St) for those over 16. Those who prefer to get around on foot should try Pigeon Mountain or Mount Roskill for spectacular summit views. Want to give the legs more of a workout? Try the 16-kilometre Coast to Coast Walk from Waitemata Harbour to Manukau Harbour.
Auckland is home to the world’s largest Polynesian population, with island culture influencing everything from music and food to festivals. Head to South Auckland’s Otara Markets to explore island culture or visit during the annual Pasifika Festival to celebrate Auckland’s Pacific heritage with lively dance and musical performances and craft and food stalls peddling traditional fare and wares.
To expand your cultural horizons a little closer to the hotel, check out the talents of Maori and Pacific artists at the Auckland Art Gallery.
Keep the kids happy
Anyone travelling with kids in tow knows that happy kids mean happy parents, and Auckland is made for young explorers. Albert Park is just a hop, skip and jump from Avani Auckland Metropolis Residences, while the Auckland Zoo is a guaranteed hit with kids keen to get up close and personal with a kiwi, discover the new High Canopy Habitat or ooh and aah over a baby orangutan. Other family-friendly favourites include thrill rides, dodgem cars, sideshow alley and Kidz Kingdom at the Rainbow’s End theme park, and the tropical butterfly house at Butterfly Creek where the humidity will have you forgetting the winter wind outside in no time.
Avani Auckland Metropolis Residences caters for pint-sized visitors with baby cots, child-friendly cutlery and crockery and a range of free kids’ movie and TV channels – as well as separate bedrooms depending on the choice of suite.
Feels like home
At the end of a day’s exploring, there’s nothing like spreading out and chilling out in accommodation that feels like home. Avani Auckland Metropolis Residences’ one and two-bedroom suites include a separate living and dining area to kick back and relax, as well as well-equipped kitchens so you can bring home a basket of goodies from the City Farmers’ Market on Saturday morning – pastries, artisan bread and cheeses, French crepes – and have a gourmet feast in the comfort of your suite.
Escape with Avani
Don’t just stay, escape to a world of fun and adventure with Avani and save up to 25% for stays until 30 September 2022. Book with confidence and enjoy peace of mind knowing you can book now, pay later, and cancel free of charge up to 24 hours before check-in.