Auckland - Summer 2014 - Our Journey Journal

Day 1 (Christmas Eve): Drove out of the office carpark at 4pm – Woohoo!!! Let the Auckland staycation commence!  Licked a gelato at Mission Bay and hung out at the beach watching yachts racing in the molten silver waters near Motutapu.  Later, cruised up Franklin Road through an archway of oak trees where houses glistened with festive lighting and jingle bells rang.  Later still, steered around drunken revellers dancing through the city in holiday mode.

Day 2 (Christmas Day): Ripped open our presents at 6am and dived into the chococates and mince pies at 7 then sped along Tamaki Drive and stripped down to togs for a quick dip at Okahu Bay.  Shook our hair dry and lay in the sun while our toddler scrambled around the kids climbing frame and the 5 year old whizzed down the flying fox. 

At 10 we crawled up to Bastion Point and stood broad to take in the amazing view of the harbour city and revel in our cultural heritage.  All hail Michael Joseph Savage!  Hit the road again for a short drive to Cornwall Park where we enjoyed a long leisurely feast cooked by friends working one of the free wood BBQs.  Fell asleep on the grass under a tree and awoke a short while later to the sound of birds singing and families playing.  Roused ourselves for a friendly game of cricket then trekked up One Tree Hill for the ultimate view of Tamaki Makarau.  Finally, wound down with an evening under the stars at the Domain, Auckland’s oldest park and a beautiful place to relax.  Happy Christmas one and all!

Day 3 (Boxing Day):  Yawned and rolled out of bed but no time to waste today.  Slid the gifts and kids into the car and veered up north.  Diverted to Waiwera for a soak and a play in the geothermal hot pools.  Watched my husband fly down the hydroslide and left him and Junior to play while me and the toddler watched a cartoon from the shallow waters.  Fully revitalised we wound up to Warkwarth on the banks of the Mahurangi River for a bush walk and romantic night in a rented bach.

Day 4: Hit second gear for a swim at Snell’s Beach, where the sand is warm and the water is clear then veered further north to join the wider family in rural Wellsford where cattle roam free.

Day 5:  Stayed in first gear on the couch

Day 6: Played in the fresh open air away from city sounds while my husband went scuba diving at Goat island and returned boasting close encounters with rays, dolphin, snapper, Kingfish and Moki.  Sat down under a pink night sky and devoured a simple delicious meal using the best local ingredients: a delightful salad of avos and toms and crayfish as delicate as petals.

Day 7: Veered back to the city to prepare for a night out touring the bars and clubs around the city to celebrate the new year sans kids :-) 

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This great story is courtesy of Faye Alain, an entrant in Omega's Summer Holiday Writing Competition.  We hope that it gives you some great ideas for having fun in Auckland on a short stay with and without the kids!

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