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12° & RAINY ON THURSDAY 22 AUGUST IN AUCKLAND
By Tony Collins
July 23, 2019
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Five Spots That'll Show Your Out-of-Town Mates How Great Auckland Is 

Treat yourself and your newcomer to a food-tour of the city.
By Tony Collins
July 23, 2019
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in partnership with

Sandwiched between two harbours, Auckland redefines what it means to be a coastal city. If the super yachts and bars lining the city's waterfront weren't already enough to impress, what lies just beyond them certainly will. Together with the University of Auckland, we've rounded up five spots that'll impress when out-of-towners come a-knocking and ask to experience some of Auckland's best.

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Department of Conservation.

RANGITOTO ISLAND

A trip to Auckland's youngest volcano Rangitoto will take you across ancient lava fields, past historic buildings and through the largest pōhutukawa forest in the world. The tracks require intermediate walking experience and some preparation. The trip begins with a 25-minute ferry ride from Queens Wharf or, for the adventurous, a kayak harbour crossing. The seven-kilometre summit track takes approximately two hours return with options to go off-track to lava tunnels and caves or around the crater. Given that some of the track covers broken lava fields, good footwear is essential. Water is also a must.

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AMANO, BRITOMART

Showcasing the best of our city with an Italian flair, Amano (meaning 'made by hand') is renowned for its decadent pasta dishes and baked goods. Housed in a 110-year-old building, the restaurant and adjoining bakery stand out with shelves of handcrafted loaves and a massive dried flower display hanging precariously from the ceiling. Featuring its very own wheat mill behind the scenes, the kitchen also delivers some of the freshest pasta in the country. Our pick is the tuatua spaghetti, comprising Cloudy Bay clams, lemon, garlic and soppressata salami.

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HOLEY MOLEY, VIADUCT HARBOUR

Australian-born mini-golf bar Holey Moley landed in Auckland last year, adding some friendly competition to the average night out. Created by parent company, Funlab, the sprawling two-level venue brings together a mini-golf course and the humming atmosphere of a bar, turning traditional putt-putt into a sensory labyrinth for kidults. After tap, tap tapping through The Simpsons and The Hobbit-themed rooms, visitors can sing their heart out in a private karaoke room and sample the pun-laden cocktail list.

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Russell Street.

WAIHEKE ISLAND ART WALK

Adventurers, art lovers and foodies can equally feel at home on Waiheke. On the artsy side of things, the ideal way to see it all is with the Waiheke Island Art Walk. The four-hour walk begins at the Waiheke Community Art Gallery in Oneroa and proceeds through artist collectives, galleries and studios, with the tour including an artisan glassmaker, shoemaker and goldsmith. For lunch, the tour makes a stop at the home and studio of artist Gabriella Lewenz, Church Bay Studio, which boasts stunning views over the bay. Finish off among nature with the walk back along the Atawhai-Whenua Forest and Bird Reserve — just one of several walking tracks on offer throughout the island.

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THE HUNTING LODGE, WAIMAUKU

Head away from the inner city suburbs and things don't get any less awe-inspiring. Amongst the forestry of Waimauku are the picturesque vines of The Hunting Lodge. The winery restaurant takes a pasture-to-plate approach to its menu, while the newly re-opened lawn bar boasts 11 beer taps and an affordable menu featuring kimchi hotdogs, beef brisket rolls and loaded fries. The new outdoor area has been transformed using up-cycled pallets and a converted shipping container serves as the cellar door.

Published on July 23, 2019 by Tony Collins

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