See + Do
Three places worth the detour.
Auckland Museum: One of the country’s most recognized heritage locations, the 84-year-old museum houses the most comprehensive collection of Maori and Pacific Islander art in the Southern Hemisphere: graphic textiles; carvings, some of them war canoes; whare (traditional Maori meeting houses) and other full-size buildings; and 18th- and 19th-century portraits.
Devonport: This self-contained, late-Victorian neighborhood has historic sites, including North Head, a British fort dating back to 1887; popular cafés and restaurants—Dida’s Wine Lounge & Tapas is a must—and not one but two of Auckland’s picture-perfect beaches. Climb to the top of Mount Victoria for staggering 360-degree views of the city, Hauraki Gulf, and the North Shore.
Waiheke Island: A 40-minute ferry ride from downtown brings you to this island escape. Rent a moped or car at the landing and cruise the beaches; Little Oneroa, Palm Beach, and the mile-long Onetangi are among the best. End the trip with a dozen Bluff oysters and a glass of Chardonnay at the Oyster Inn ($$$),a barefoot-chic restaurant and guesthouse opened last year by a former Louis Vuitton executive.