Auckland is New Zealand's largest city with over a million people living
in the urban area of greater Auckland. In its early years Auckland was the
capital city but in 1865 the administration of the country was moved to the
more central situation of Wellington. Auckland stretches between two
harbours on a narrow neck of land and is almost surrounded by water.
Aucklanders call their city the "City of Sails" and indeed it seems so on a
yachting regatta day. A feature of the landscape is the numerous extinct
volcanic cones - Mount Eden (Maungawhau), One Tree Hill (Maungakiekie),
Mount Albert (Owairaka) and Mount Hobson (Remuera) are prominent examples
in the city itself whilst Rangitoto Island, a very recent volcano, stands
as a sentinel at the entrance to Waitemata Harbour. Early Maori
settlement made Auckland a densely populated part of the country and the
volcanic cones all show signs of their use as secure places to live.
Devonport on the harbour is a self
sufficient settlement of commuters and artists. Takapuna is the City on the Beach and the Lake.
Albany on the northern fringe is home to Massey University - Auckland
West Auckland is home to many notable vineyards and the gateway to the prominent bush covered Waitakere Ranges and the western beaches. These are the wild beaches of Auckland - for surfers and gannets and wild scenery. West Auckland is based on Waitakere City which is NZís only eco-city and the home to many artists and crafts people.
East of Auckland lies the old town of Howick, now linked to Auckland city centre by the newer suburbs of Auckland. Wide roads, safe golden beaches, large gardens and the occasional large shopping malls are found here.
Check out http://www.biglittlecity.co.nz/