As our biggest and northernmost city, Auckland summers can sometimes get a little too hot for comfort. The humidity coupled with high temperatures and bustling streets mean that sometimes it’s nice to escape the city for a while with one of the many excellent getaway spots within a day’s drive. When it comes to beating the heat in Auckland, here are our top choices, all easily reached in your rental car.
Kitekite Falls – Piha Bay isn’t exactly a secret for summer surfing and swimming fun, but these falls are a less-visited treasure that are just as excellent for a dip. A short and easy walk through sub-tropical native bush will bring you to these picturesque falls, at the bottom of which lie tranquil pools for swimming. Though tempting, refrain from jumping from the falls as there may be invisible obstacles just below the surface.
Kelvin Strand Beach – Nestled at the tip of the Te Atatu peninsula means the secluded location keeps the throngs of summer day trippers from overwhelming this picturesque stretch of sand. The white sands and clear water can be biked along at low tide, and you will be rewarded for your efforts with stunning views of the city skyline including the Harbour Bridge and Sky Tower. There’s also a Harbourview walkway to enjoy.
Awhitu Lighthouse – For more beautiful views of the city, a winding drive out to the Awhitu Peninsula is well worth the journey. Windswept but beautiful, the lighthouse offers an exceptional vista and is surrounded by secluded beaches on the eastern side. It’s a great place to bring a picnic even when the water’s too cold for swimming.
Tahuna Torea – Located in Glendowie, Tahuna Torea is a natural and protected lagoon that provides a wetland sanctuary for dozens of different species of bird life. The 25 hectares are a tranquil reprieve in a busy city and provide excellent views of the surrounding rivers and beaches. The whole area is criss-crossed with walking tracks for you to explore and enjoy the native flora and fauna.
If you’re finding yourself feeling worn and weary from the summer heat and the city crowds, these easy Auckland summer attractions can be reached with a short drive in an Auckland rental car and provide a cooling calming oasis.