Get around the City of Sails at your own pace
Why do we call Auckland the 'City of Sails'? Because it has more boats per capita than anywhere else in the world! It also has a lot of coastline to sail those boats from, as it sits on an isthmus between two harbours; the Manukau and the Waitemata. It is the largest Polynesian city in the world, with representatives from many of the Pacific Islands making up the population and adding to our maritime vibe.
It could just as easily be called the city of volcanoes, there's around 48 of them in the greater Auckland area. Its Maori name is Tamaki Makaurau, which means, 'Tamaki desired by many lovers'. And no wonder! Who wouldn't desire a city with two harbours, stunning volcanic mountains, a cosmopolitan population? There's something for everyone in Auckland; from nature, arts, culture, shopping and sports.
Approximately one in four New Zealanders live in Auckland, it has a population of more than 1.4 million people. Just this year it rated as number 3 in a list of most liveable cities in the world.
is the country's busiest, so chances are you will pass through Auckland at some point in your travels. Don't rush off! Stay and explore; there's no better way than in the comfort of a rental car.
Top tips to booking a car rental in Auckland or from Auckland Airport
Compare and save - We are experts in rental cars and our booking system does all the hard work for you. When you need to hire a car in Auckland, simply fill in the search box with your travel details, and with a single click of the search button we will display vehicles available through Avis, Budget, Thrifty, Europcar and Hertz. The savings are right at your finger tips.
Choose by size or by price - You can choose the car brand and rate that will best suit you and your travelling needs. Do you need an economical compact city car? Or do you need a wagon for the whole family? No matter which, VroomVroomVroom will have the best car for your needs.
Book well in advance - This will ensure you get the best deal possible. Car hire rates are based on supply and demand. This means the more rental cars available, the cheaper they should be.
Cancel at anytime with no charge - VroomVroomVroom know that plans may change. That's why we negotiated hard with the suppliers to ensure that if you need to cancel or modify your booking, you will not be charged.
Pick up from a location that suits you - We have depots in the Auckland city centre as well as the suburbs and airport.
Once you've chosen your dream car rental in Auckland, you can now grab your car keys and embark on an unforgettable road trip adventure! If you need ideas of where to go, or what to do, check out our Auckland Guide
for a list of attractions, accommodation, and restaurants.
Heading to Auckland for the All Blacks versus Wallabies Bledisloe Cup Rugby Test?
Now is the time to get organised for the ultimate rugby clash. Check out our events
page for more information, and other spring highlights.
Do you prefer a campervan hire in Auckland?
If you're planning to go on a road trip in Auckland, VroomVroomVroom can also help you find the perfect campervan hire. Check out our Campervan Hire Auckland
page to see a list of motorhomes and campervans as well as holiday parks and camping sites.
Want some inside knowledge on how to get value on activities in Auckland?
Auckland is a great city with lots to offer, but like many big cities, it can be expensive. We've put some great value ideas together in our Cheap as Chips menu: Auckland on a Budget.
Your guide to exploring the City of Sails in your car hire
Must dos include:
- Travelling to the top of one of the volcanoes. One Tree Hill, Maungawhau (Mt Eden) or Rangitoto are all superb.
- Check out any of Auckland's vibrant markets, such as Otara or Avondale for a unique, local experience.
- Try boutique shopping in the inner city village of Parnell
For a city of just over a million people, Auckland does have issues with traffic. You can easily move around the city suburbs using the motorway system, but try to avoid peak times. If you are ready to hit the road, all you need is your cheap car rental and our trusty travel guide to help you see the best of what Auckland has to offer.
Things to Do | Places to Stay | Places to Eat
THINGS TO DO
This island is the jewel in the crown of Auckland's Hauraki Gulf. It has recently been voted the Number 5 Global Destination to visit in 2016 by Lonely Planet, and the Number 4 best island in the world by Conde Nast Traveler. What makes it so special? It has gorgeous beaches, secret bays, internationally acclaimed wines, vineyard dining with views to die for, a lively arts scene...do you need any more convincing? It is accessible by a scenic ferry ride of just 35 minutes from downtown Auckland. Leave the rental car for a day, there is secure and affordable parking in the Auckland council car park at Downtown, and go.
Kelly Tarlton's Sea Life Aquarium
Address: 23 Tamaki Drive, Orakei
Discover life under the sea at Kelly Tarltons. Every generation will love this visit as you embark on a journey into the depths of the ocean. You can also experience Antarctica with the replica Scott Base which is very popular with visitors to the aquarium. Be sure to check their website to check feeding times for the penguins and stingrays.
Address: 833 Kingseat Road, Karaka
Thirty minutes south of central Auckland, based at the Kingseat Hospital (a former psychiatric hospital) is now the #No.1 haunted theme park in the Southern Hemisphere. With five haunting attractions to choose from such as…the Haunted House, Freaky Forest, Disturbia, Corn Evil and Claustrophobia; you won't be disappointed, but in fact- terrified!
Address: 2 Clist Crescent, Manukau
New Zealand's largest amusement park has fun for everyone. With so many different rides and attractions to choose from, ranging from mild to extreme thrills, no one will be left out and you'll definitely get your value for money as you have entire day to do whatever you want as many times as possible. Just aim to visit outside of the local school holidays to cut down those waiting times in line.
The Auckland Harbour Bridge
Address: Westhaven Reserve, Bottom of Curran St, Herne Bay
Whether you're an adrenaline junkie or the easy going type, the Harbour Bridge offers two unique attractions fit for you. Jumping from 40 metres off the bridge, and over the Waitemata Harbour with your ankles being strapped to a bungee chord made up of hundreds of thousands of rubber bands, or climbing the famous landmark to venture on an hour and a half sightseeing tour is a New Zealand MUST DO!
The Red Boats
Address: Trips leave from Z-Pier, Westhaven
Auckland might be known as 'The City of Sails', but not everyone has access to a yacht! What you can do is spend a day on the water with Red Boats. They can fit you into one of their public fishing trips, or take you on a cruise under the Harbour Bridge and through the upper harbour to the historic Riverhead Tavern. If you have a group of your own, talk to them about a charter! Call them on 0800redboats or (09) 834 7337.
Time Unlimited Tours
Web Address: Suite 276 / 92 Franklin Road, Freemans Bay
A unique aspect of New Zealand is Tikanga Maori, or Maori culture. Learn about Auckland in a holistic way by taking a tour with award-winning Time Unlimited Tours. They offer whole or half-day driven tours if you don't feel like tackling Auckland traffic for a day, or try a walking tour of Auckland's wild west coast.
Address: Cnr Federal & Victoria Street
Whether it's to admire the 360 panoramic views, indulge in the fine dining from a range of restaurants, or walk around the edge of the tower's rim, this tallest man-made structure in the country is not to be missed.
Auckland is the largest Polynesian city in the world, as well as having a diverse mix of other cultures and ethnicities. This diversity is all brought together by the market atmosphere. With authentic food and fresh produce, clothing, accessories, jewellery, fashion, arts and crafts and entertainment these popular markets are a unique New Zealand experience .
Address: Under Dressmart, 151 Arthur St, Onehunga
Every Thursday night from 6pm - 10pm
New Lynn night market
Address: New Lynn Community Centre, 45 Totara Avenue, New Lynn
Every Thursday night from 5.30pm - 9pm
Address: Newbury Street, off East Tamaki Road, Otara
Every Saturday from 6am - 12pm
PLACES TO STAY
Skycity Grand Hotel
Address: 90 Federal St, Auckland
You'll be ticking all the boxes when you choose to stay here. This hotel encompasses all the luxuries of location, views and high end living. Located in the heart of Auckland CBD, just a 10 minute stroll to the waterfront and close to Queen St shops. You'll also be treated to free Wi-Fi, 24 hour room services and cardio room.
Ranked #1 of 76 hotels in the city by TripAdvisor 2014, named as one of Metro's Top 50 Auckland Restaurants for 2013 & 2014, ranked as the 58th best hotel in the world on Expedia Insider's Select List plus many, many more awards. This stylishly reinterpreted iconic building will make you feel like a celebrity. Absolutely stunning! Must experience.
Attic Backpackers (Formerly Top Floor Backpackers)
Although it's ranked 2nd best backpackers lodging accommodation in the city (Tripadvisor), reviews beg to differ and claim the budget accommodation to be the…“best hostel in NZ!” The Attic Backpackers pride themselves with a fresh, stylish, modern contemporary facility that's maintained to the highest of standards. Budget has a whole new meaning at this location.
100 Greys Ave Auckland
You just can't beat the location of this charming hotel. Walk everywhere from the Amora; to the Aotea Centre, the Civic Theatre, the Auckland Central Library and art gallery. Enjoy the views into Myers Park. The Amora puts on a great breakfast, and has a beautiful rooftop pool and spa.
150 Vincent St Auckland
Enjoy a central location, and the comfort of a 5-star Qualmark rated backpackers. You get the great value of a backpackers, but a little more comfort, as every room has an ensuite bathroom. You can easily walk to all of the city centre's attractions.
If you are looking for a last minute hotel deal in Auckland, don't fret because Ezibed is here to help you. Ezibed.com, an online accommodation booking website offers a quick and easy way to book at considerably reduced rates, with fast confirmation to their customers and clients. Ezibed.com guides customers and accommodation providers together and supplies an online market for unsold short term accommodation rooms. Accommodation providers, on the other hand, supply rates, inclusions and rooms available online for last minute bookings. By booking with Ezibed.com, you can now find amazing last minute deals and you can book yourself a great room the smart way!
O'Connell St Bistro
Awarded Best Wine Experience in the Cuisine Good Food Awards 2014. O'Connell St Bistro is located in Auckland's historic central business district and boasts an extensive menu which will satisfy all taste buds. This modern European styled bistro has a great reputation for its amazing food and cosy, relaxed atmosphere. Be sure to make this one of you preferred eating spots when you visit Auckland.
One Tree Grill
Address: 9 Pah Road, Epsom
You'll be impressed the second you step foot into this establishment with their easy to use mini iPad menus. The surprises keep coming with this lively yet relaxed atmosphere. Delicious food selected from both sea and land, and cooked in a variety of ways. Spiced, smoked, roasted or twice-cooked. Whatever your preference, there will be something on the menu to die for.
The French Cafe Restaurant
Address: 210 Symonds Street
Ranked #1 of 1,148 restaurants in the city with 382 Reviews, winner of -Best Service 2014 [Metro Restaurant of the Year Awards] this restaurant provides a relaxing, sophisticated environment that overlooks a beautiful edible garden and courtyard. Fine dining at its best , worth every penny. Bon Appetit!
Address: Level 1 Three Lamps Plaza, 283 Ponsonby Road, Ponsonby
Ranked #2 of 1,148 restaurants in the city with 191 Reviews, winner of -Best fine dining and Chef 2014 [Metro Restaurant of the Year Awards] this restaurant takes fine dining to whole new level by not only providing top quality dishes, but by combining those techniques with what the Chef likes to call SidArt- Exquisitely executed presentation that will take your breath away.
Giapo Ice Cream Restaurant
Ranked #3 of 1,148 restaurants in Auckland with 348 Reviews, #10 in the World Best Gelateria Chart [Dissapore media] Giapo have every right to claim “New Zealand's BEST ice-cream” title. So many new and creative ice-cream deserts to choose from that are guaranteed to please. Unique to the city only, a must stop taste experience!
Address: 605 New North Rd
Feel like a local in this welcoming neighbourhood bar. Flight 605 is proud of its enormous collection of New Zealand craft beers. Drop by for some of its famous events; Wings Wednesday, Comedy Cockpit nights, or the Birth of Cool, late on Friday nights. Flight 605 is an easy drive from the CBD, and there's ample parking in surrounding streets.
Want to explore more of Auckland? Check out our travel guides below...
Have you been to any of these places? Share your experience below...
Auckland Events Spring 2016
It's warming up in Auckland! Get in early to book your car for some of Auckland's most iconic events.
Bledisloe Cup Rugby Test 22 October 2016 Eden Park
Passion never runs higher than when the world champion All Blacks meet their arch rivals, the Australian Wallabies. There's good public transport to Eden Park, but hiring a car for the weekend means you can make the most of the rest of your time in Auckland.
ASB Auckland Marathon 30th October 2016
What better way to see some of the best parts of Auckland, and tick off a milestone achievement at the same time? Get organised now, there's not just a full marathon, but a range of distances to suit most.