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FOOD & DRINK

The Six Best Things to Do in Auckland After Payday

Who needs financial security when you can fly a helicopter to a winery for lunch?
By Laetitia Laubscher
October 26, 2017
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The Six Best Things to Do in Auckland After Payday

Who needs financial security when you can fly a helicopter to a winery for lunch?
By Laetitia Laubscher
October 26, 2017
  shares

It's payday. Now, you could be a financially responsible adult and put aside your rent money, general expenses and the necessary 10-20% of your pay cheque into a long term savings/investment scheme for that house you'll never be able to afford/retirement, and exit out of this article's tab. Or you could read on and take the risk of blowing your entire week or month's income on one of these dreamy options. No ragerts.

CHOPPER TO WAIHEKE FOR LUNCH WITH SIX PEOPLE

Show your friends once and for all that you are way better at cool dates than any of their boyfriends/girlfriends/partners by taking six of them on the most The Bachelor-esque date ever — a scenic helicopter ride to Mudbrick Restaurant and Winery for a three-course a la carte lunch. There's only $4984 standing between you and the title of Friend of the Year.

EAT THE MOST EXPENSIVE MEAL IN TOWN

For a cool $128, you can have yourself either a braised New Zealand abalone (or as we locals call it, pāua), fish maw, morel mushroom in oyster sauce dish or a stewed New Zealand abalone, pan-fried scallop, black truffle dish at Huami, Skycity's Chinese restaurant helmed by Nic Watt (MASU) and Jeff Tan.

Alternatively, if you want your Lord Rutherfords to last a couple of courses, you could try the champagne-accompanied 15-course Chef's Table experience (the entire process takes three hours) at the relatively newly revamped Sidart (pictured) for $170. Optional wine pairing is an extra $80 per person.

TAKE THE AMERICA'S CUP YACHT FOR A SPIN

For between $170 and $230 you can have a two-hour, hands-on sailing experience on a symbol of Kiwi pride and heartbreak, the America's Cup yacht. No experience necessary, just some hard work on the grinders to hoist the mainsail. The booking kiosk can be found opposite The Nightingale on the Viaduct Harbour.

HAVE A BEHIND-THE-SCENES EXPERIENCE AT AUCKLAND ZOO

Be a certified good person and get to meet animals up close by participating in one of Auckland Zoo's behind the scenes experiences — meet a Nepalese red panda, treat a Galápagos tortoise to an afternoon snack, hold a palm-size giant weta. Prices are around $75-90 per person and the money goes toward the Auckland Zoo Conservation Fund, which in turn supports projects like the Cheetah Outreach Trust in South Africa and 21st Century Tiger in Indonesia.

GET A TOE-TO-TOE SPA EXPERIENCE AT SOFITEL'S SO SPA

In 150-minutes of bliss you can drop $310 on a So Exhilarating massage followed by a So Rejuvenating facial, a mani or pedi and a glass of bubbles at Sofitel Auckland's So Spa. Alternatively, kill two birds with one really smooth water-heated therapy stone and indulge in the 30-minute massage and three-course lunch package for $99. You are so worth it.

TAKE A STAYCATION

Take a leaf out of the French book and exercise your right to disconnect while also avoiding Auckland's main drawback, the traffic. One such place where you could do so would be the Auckland waterfront's majestic, boat-shaped Hilton hotel. The luxurious, harbour view-ridden King Hilton Bow Suite will set you back in the range of $361-$758 depending on the date you're booking it for. Once you're booked in, have a look at our staycation guide for activity ideas.

Published on October 26, 2017 by Laetitia Laubscher

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