From the moment I hopped off that plane in Auckland I new that I loved it, that New Zealand was somewhere I could call home for a little while (and not just because I was grateful to be back on solid ground after 30+ hours of travelling)! The Kiwis have this attitude to life that's just more healthy, more normal than us Brits - you actually see kids playing outside still not just on computer games. Although, with the scenery that even Auckland has to show you couldn't not have a love of the outdoors here. From a harbour that's regularly home to whales and dolphins, to islands and national parks with a bus or short ferry ride away life is made to be lived outside here.
Now I'm not saying Auckland doesn't have it’s faults, it is built in the middle of a volcano field... Luckily most of these are pretty dormant but high five to that decision New Zealand. Below I've whacked out your summary for travelling and staying in Auckland from getting to and from the airport to your hostels to crash in. I actually stayed in 3 different ones so I have a broad view on this, why I chopped and changed so much I have NO idea but I passed through a few times crashing wherever the people I travelled with were. I’ve also written up a guide about what to do in Auckland which is coming soon!
To and From Airport
This one is easy. As usual for big cities the airport is a bit of a trek from the centre so your best bet is to grab the Auckland SkyBus. It stops all the way into the centre and I think even to the harbour, no stop is ever far from a hostel so you're safe. I even crashed in the mount Eden national park just outside the city centre and the bus dropped us pretty close to the hostel too. A taxi will cost you your life savings and there aren't many other options other than walking which I seriously wouldn't recommend.
Total SkyBus cost at: $16 one way / $28 return
1. Base Auckland - clean and chilled out. A little industrial as its a small high rise but if you buy yourself a base card it saves you a lot of dollar. By prepaying for 10 nights and using them up as you go (no need to book in advance or anything, just rock up and swipe card), you can save up to $10/night! Central and good position if you're having to get up early to hop onto a Kiwi Experience tour bus the next day
Cost / Night: $28 (Dorm) or $45 (Private)
2. Nomads Auckland - the other of the two big hostel brands in New Zealand. Again, clean and tidy but a roof bar and cracking views on the city. Super central and also great if you're hopping on the Kiwi Experience bus early the next morning!
Cost / Night: $25 (Dorm) or $48 (Private)
3. Pentlands Lodge, Mount Eden - about a 20minute bus ride outside town this is perfect for a few good nights rest to recover from your jet lag. It's just a big converted house with a big kitchen, garden and parking. If you're planning a long term stay in the city or want to buy a car to explore New Zealand at your own pace crash here as they have a great notice board for people buying / selling cars and are cheap. You're also only 10 minutes from the famous mount Eden!
Cost / Night: Now Closed! Sorry guys :(
Of course there are loads of other awesome places to stay (many much more comfortable than hostel accomodation), so do your research before heading out! Also, all the prices I’ve quoted are in New Zealand dollars which equates out to about £0.52/dollar. Remember to check out my post about what to do while in Auckland when I’ve finished it in a few days!