Nestled between two harbors New Zealand’s North Island, Auckland is the country’s largest city and the ideal jumping-off point for cruises around New Zealand, to the South Pacific, and to Australia. Stroll around Waitemata Harbor and explore the city’s eclectic waterfront bars and restaurants. Dive into Auckland’s diverse history and culture at the Auckland War Memorial Museum. Or enjoy a day of sun and secluded beaches during a visit to Waiheke Island.
On cruises from Auckland, you’ll discover the best of New Zealand while sailing down its majestic fjords and stopping in exciting ports like Wellington and Christchurch. You can also embark on a journey to the islands of the South Pacific, visiting islands such as Fiji and Samoa. Or cruise to Sydney, Australia, where national parks, golden beaches, and a sparkling harbor await.
Visit multicultural cities, laid back beach towns, remote islands, and a world-renowned wine country during one of our New Zealand cruises. Explore the Bay of Islands and go snorkeling, fishing, or scuba diving. Walk around artsy Wellington, known for its vibrant food and coffee scene. Venture down the serene fjords of New Zealand, including Milford Sound, where you’ll be surrounded by lush cliffs and stunning waterfalls. During a stop in Picton, sip on a glass of Sauvignon Blanc in the nearby Marlborough wine region.
Sail to the exotic islands of the South Pacific, where tropical islands and impossibly white sand beaches await. Explore the treasured islands of Samoa, where tropical vistas and romantic shores await. Discover pristine destinations in Fiji, like Suva and Lautoka, which are full of lush rainforests and untouched shores. Or visit the kingdom of Tonga, a group of islands where the ocean sparkles in a hundred different shades of blue.
Embrace the vibrant atmosphere of Sydney, Australia, where you’ll find a picturesque harbor, golden beaches, and an impressive culinary scene. Take a guided tour of the city’s highlights, including the iconic Sydney Opera House that sits on the harbor. See Australian wildlife, like kangaroos and koalas, from up close during a trip to the Taronga Zoo. Or simply relax on one of the city’s popular beaches, such as Manly or Bondi, where you can rest on the soft sand or try catching a wave.
On a Celebrity Cruises vacation, you’ll cruise from Auckland to some of the world’s best destinations while immersed in complete luxury. Our award-winning ships are destinations in and of themselves, where you’ll enjoy world-class dining, unlimited entertainment options, and impeccable service throughout your journey. Spend your days discovering exciting ports of call in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific, then come back on board and unwind in spacious staterooms and inviting spaces.
During days at sea, explore all of the amenities aboard Celebrity Eclipse. Order dishes crafted by a Michelin-starred chef at the main restaurant or savor globally inspired cuisine at one of the specialty restaurants. Watch riveting music and dance shows at our state-of-the-art Theatre. Unwind by the outdoor pool or catch up on some reading at the serene indoor solarium. Schedule a reinvigorating afternoon at the Spa or plan a movie night under the stars at the Rooftop Terrace. There’s no shortage of fun and relaxation waiting for you on a cruise with Celebrity.
Ships dock at either Princes Wharf or Queens Wharf, both of which are only a short walk to restaurants and shops and just a 10-minute walk from the heart of downtown Auckland.
This telecommunications tower is a modern, ever-visible landmark in the city and one of the best places to get a bird’s-eye view of the city. Standing at over 1,000 feet tall, the Sky Tower is home to the only revolving restaurant in New Zealand. There’s also the Sky Café for coffee and pastries, and a collection of diverse eateries at the street level. For the adventurous, there’s a bungee jump or a skywalk around the outside. Booking tickets in advance is recommended.
For a museum experience unlike any other, the Auckland War Memorial Museum tells the rich histories of the native Maori people who populated New Zealand for thousands of years before European colonization. You’ll learn about Auckland’s role in the development of New Zealand and see priceless Maori and South Pacific artifacts. A guided tour is a must for history lovers.
Escape the city on a short ferry ride to Waiheke Island from the CBD. Fascinating winery tours and grape tastings, like at Man O’ War Vineyards, or an upscale afternoon at the luxe Mudbrick Vineyard, await you on the “island of wine”. This is where much of Auckland’s wine is produced. Plus, secluded walking trails and hidden waterfalls beg to be explored at Whakanewha Regional Park.
Interestingly, One Tree Hill is a volcanic cone and one of 50 in Auckland city. It’s important to both early Maori and European history, and a tour of One Tree Hill will give you the inside scoop. It’s set in a spacious park with beautiful gardens, avenues of trees, a planetarium, and a children’s playground.
What could be more romantic than a harbor stroll at dusk or sunset? Luckily, Waitemata Harbor in Auckland is particularly beautiful, with downtown’s skyscrapers glittering off the waters. A long walk, picnic, or bar-hopping in the harbor’s restaurants is a must-do.
Descend into the breathtaking Ruakuri Caves, a natural wonder full of Maori history. Go down the cave’s spiral staircase and marvel at this underground labyrinth full of beautiful stalactites and brilliant glow worms at every turn.
The Sugar Club
Address: Level 53, Sky Tower, Auckland, New Zealand
The crown jewel of Auckland’s skyline is the Sky Tower, and its observation deck restaurant is a fine dining experience like no other. The lunch and dinner menus emphasize sustainability and local sources, meaning the freshest ingredients are their main priority. The seasonal a-la-carte menu offers delicate dishes with powerful flavors, like scampi dumplings and Japanese quail. Desserts include a coconut and blood orange ice cream sandwich and a sheep panna cotta. The Sugar Club takes risks to bring you an unforgettable culinary experience in Auckland.
Best Ugly Bagels
Address: 90 Wellesley St W, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
The motto at Best Ugly Bagels is “ugly ain’t fancy,” and this bagel spot hand-rolls their bagels and simmers them in honey water. It’s a different take on the traditional water-boiled bagel, but it’s meant to be crispy on the outside and doughy on the inside. Choose classic toppings like lox, capers, and dill, or go for a cream cheese schmear. Either way, it’s a delicious breakfast option in Auckland.
Address: Elliott Stables, 39-41 Elliott St, Auckland, 1010, New Zealand
If you’re craving the tastes of South India, traditional Kerala cuisine is Ela’s core focus. Dinner mains include prawn curry, vegetarian dosa, lamb shank curry, and more. The restaurant also boasts a variety of vegetarian and gluten-free options. It’s part of a dining precinct with a wide range of cuisine offerings.
Maori settlement in the area of Auckland began thousands of years ago. In the 1800s, the discovery of gold in New Zealand caused an unforeseeable but impactful boom in fortune hunters from countries like China and Australia. This melting pot of individuals greatly influenced the culture of New Zealand, and they stayed in the region permanently to start their businesses and raise families. Today, Auckland is New Zealand’s biggest city with over 1.5 million people representing many ethnic origins.
You’ll find duty-free shopping for souvenirs and other local items at the DFS Galleria Custom House that you can stop in before one of our cruises from Auckland. At Britomart, you’ll find fashion boutiques, bookstores, and a variety of shopping. Ponsonby is known for designer fashions and shops that highlight local designers in jewelry, art, and interiors. Whether you have a retail mission or you’re just window shopping, Auckland’s shopping districts offer homewares, art, and beautiful clothes at all price points.
Getting around the city of Auckland is pretty easy and straightforward, and downtown Auckland is walkable. There’s also a bus system, including the green Link bus which loops around central shopping precincts. Taxis are all over the port area where cruises from Auckland depart and are easy to use.
The official currency of the country is the New Zealand dollar. Tipping isn’t common practice in New Zealand, so don’t worry about tipping your taxi driver. Restaurants in Auckland don’t include service charges, so you can leave a 10% tip for excellent service. Most accept both cash and credit cards, and there are plenty of ATMs around the city.