That’s right people – there is life outside of the warmth of your house and just because winter is now in full swing in New Zealand doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still get out and explore. New Zealand is about so much more than relaxing on the beach on a warm summer’s day and Auckland is absolutely packed with great things to do in the winter months. So grab your winter coat and head for the door – we’re going to let you in on our top 5 things to do in Auckland this winter.
1. Skiing, snowboarding and sledging in Auckland
That’s right. You don’t need an expensive weekend getaway to Queenstown to enjoy some winter activities. A short trip 30 minutes north of Auckland CBD will take you to Snowplanet, the country’s only year-round indoor snow resort. With some awesome deals on evening skiing and snowboarding during the evenings Snowplanet is an awesome place for small and big kids alike! They have a pretty awesome restaurant on site which is perfect for grabbing a hot chocolate to warm up in between your moguls and your slaloms!
Find out more about Snowplanet: https://snowplanet.co.nz/
2. Aotea Square Ice Rink
This is one of our winter favourites. Get your winter woollies on and head down to Aotea Square in the heart of the CBD. The rink will be in the square from 16 June to 23 July and is a great place for the whole family. There is a packed schedule of themed weekends, competitions and parties so make sure you find out what’s going on before you head down there so you can make sure you turn up in the right gear! For the younger kids, there is also the Snow Dome play area right next to the rink. If you fancy just sitting back and watching the icey action, this year for the first time there will be a free winter lounge set up next to the rink which will be lit up for the Matariki celebrations.
3. See a show
Auckland is a great place to catch a show and this winter has a great line up scheduled. In August, the hugely popular Matilda the Musical will be coming to the Civic. Inspired by Roald Dahl’s famous book, this highly anticipated musical will run right through to the middle of September and tickets are selling fast so don’t miss out. At the ASB Waterfront Theatre in the Wynyard Quarter is the New Zealand International Film Festival running from 21 July to 6 August. There is an awesome lineup of New Zealand and International films on show and there is something different going on every day so lots of opportunities to check out this awesome theatre.
4. Pamper yourself with a spa
Getting out into the city and treating yourself to a spa and maybe a nice lunch date is a great way to shake off the winter blues. The massage or spa treatment will leave you feeling super relaxed and lunch out is always a great way to forget about the weather outside, especially with good friends. East Day Spa have teamed up with Sky City to offer some fantastic spa and lunch packages which are a fantastic way to enjoy a day out in the city. If you are looking to escape the city one weekend, why not head north 45 minutes to Waiwera and spend the day at the thermal resort and spa. All the pools are 100% naturally heated and there are some fun pools for the kids too so make a family day out of it.
Find out more about Waiwera Thermal Resort and Spa: http://www.waiwera.co.nz/
5. Get out and explore
Winter is one of our favourite times to head out for a walk and explore one of Auckland’s amazing regional parks. The cold crisp days offer up perfect conditions for a good tramp. Wrap up warm and head out into one of the great parks that are found all around Auckland from the Waitakere Ranges on the West Coast to the east coast parks including Long Bay, Shakespear and Wenderholm. If you fancy heading further afield, just over an hour north of Auckland is the beautiful Tawharanui Regional Park which has a range of walking tracks and will lead you to the beautiful beach.
Talking of beaches, they’re also a great place to head for a walk and whilst only the brave will paddle their feet, it’s still great to feel the sand between your toes.
So there you go, our top 5 tips for things to do in Auckland this winter. Hopefully this has given you some inspiration to get out of the house and embrace these winter months! Now the winter solstice has passed, the nights are getting lighter and summer will be here before you know it so make the most of the winter and enjoy our beautiful city.