Auckland, New Zealand
Posted Mar 29, 2011
If you're looking for cultural diversity and perhaps even a few unexpected surprises, then New Zealand's former capital city of Auckland will be the perfect port of call on your Australia/New Zealand cruise.
Auckland is a classic example of a city where you'll be hard-pressed to fit everything into one trip. One of the various city drives available as shore excursions will provide a good overview of the area, and while these sightseeing trips are fantastic, they really only begin to scratch the surface of what Auckland has to offer.
For example, Auckland is home to the largest man-made structure in all of New Zealand, the Sky Tower. Ascending via a glass elevator to an observation deck 1,000 feet above the ground is a great way to take in the city and the surrounding area. From here you'll be able to see that Auckland is a cosmopolitan city dominated by skyscrapers - yet it's also integrated with the natural scenery, such as nearby volcanoes and the harbor.
Speaking of nature, one of the more unique trips you can book in Auckland will take you out to Waitomo Grotto. Here you'll sail on an underground river through majestic caverns lit up by glowworms. It's truly a sight that must be seen to be believed.
As for unexpected surprises, you might be shocked to know that New Zealand is one of the better countries for wine in the world. Be sure to head out into the countryside surrounding Auckland in order to visit some of the vineyards making truly delicious concoctions.