DHL New Zealand Lions Series 2017 host city: Auckland

Auckland's Eden Park is set to create more sporting history, hosting three matches during the DHL New Zealand Lions Series 2017.

Two All Black test matches and a game against Auckland-based Super Rugby franchise the Blues will take place at the 50,000 capacity stadium. The Lions will play the Blues on 7 June and the first and final test matches of the series will be played on 24 June and 8 July respectively.

Eden Park, the site of the All Blacks’ famous World Cup wins in 1987 and 2011, is second to none when it comes to sporting history in New Zealand. Having already hosted a number of All Black test matches against The British & Irish Lions, the great rivalry will continue when both teams take to the field in 2017.

The hallowed turf at Eden Park is also the home of Auckland Cricket and hosted a number of matches during the 2015 Cricket World Cup.

The blend of harbour, islands, Polynesian culture and a modern downtown has created a vibrant urban outdoors lifestyle and visitors to the city will find plenty of adventures to tickle their fancy.

Leap of faith

Visitors to Auckland can keep their feet firmly on the ground or enjoy spectacular views of the harbour city from one particular vantage point. Auckland’s Sky Tower, the tallest structure in New Zealand at 328 metres above ground, is an iconic feature of the city’s skyline.

Visitors can enjoy panoramic views and delicious delights inside the Tower, or enjoy the thrilling experience of either a Sky Jump or the Sky Walk.

Thrill-seekers can also combine expansive views of the Waitemata Harbour with an Auckland Bridge Climb across another landmark - Auckland Harbour Bridge - or a leap from the Auckland Bridge Bungy.

Climb a volcano

One of the most unique things about Auckland is the volcanic landscape. The city is built over 48 volcanos and, just off-shore in the Waitemata Harbour, the distinctive conical form of Rangitoto Island dominates the cityscape.

A scenic ferry ride lands visitors on the shores of this geological wonder with the opportunity to stroll through New Zealand’s largest pohutukawa forest, explore lava caves and climb to the summit (260m) for expansive city and coastal views - or sit back and relax with a 4WD road train trip to the top.

There are many other easily accessible volcanos to explore around Auckland, all offering great views of the city and the surrounding harbours.

City of Sails

Auckland is known as the ‘City of Sails’ because of the huge number of pleasure boats moored in numerous marinas around the city.

There are plenty of options and activities that allow visitors to explore the glistening waters but those wanting to try a truly unique Kiwi experience will love the thrill of Auckland Adventure Jet.

This super-charged, purpose-built jet boat takes visitors on an electrifying tour of the harbour. For a more low-key adventure visitors can explore New Zealand’s rich marine history and links with the world-renowned America’s Cup at Voyager Maritime Museum in Viaduct Harbour, or enjoy water-based activities such as sailing an America's Cup yacht or a whale and dolphin safari.

Wild West Coast

The Auckland coast is dotted with beautiful beaches east to west - but there is nothing quite like experiencing the rugged beauty of a west coast beach.

Just a short drive from Auckland, visitors can kick off their shoes, feel the black sand between their toes, and watch the wild surf of the Tasman Ocean. Muriwai Beach is a popular destination for surfing and other attractions include a full links golf course, mountain bike trails, horse riding and a surf school. 

Piha is another famous Auckland west coast beach - this picturesque surf break is dominated by Lion Rock and surrounded by the lush rain forests of Waitakere Regional Parkland which offers easily accessible walks to lookout points and waterfalls.

Wonderful waterfront

The city of Auckland has strong links with the sea and there is no better place to enjoy the harbour than down at the Auckland waterfront.

Here visitors can watch the world go by from one of the many bars and restaurants at the Auckland Viaduct, or take a walk around the Viaduct Marina. This world class marina maintains 50 berths accommodating a mix of vessels, including visiting super-yachts.

The newly-developed Wynyard Quarter and Silo Park has a range of bars, restaurants and cafés - along with the Auckland Fish Market and a marine-inspired children’s playground.

Welcome to our world

New Zealand’s largest city, Auckland is also the most multicultural. One of the best places to experience the unique culture of New Zealand and its people is at the Auckland Museum.

Housed in a notable historic building, within the immaculate grounds of the Auckland Domain, the Auckland Museum brings the historical and cultural story of New Zealand and the Pacific to life. Visitors wanting to learn more about Māori culture can experience a spine-tingling Māori cultural performance.

Fast facts

  • Auckland is the only city in the world that is built on an active volcano field.
  • Auckland, also known as the ‘City of Sails’, has more boats per head of population than any other city in the world.
  • Auckland is one of few places outside the tropics where rainforests exist. The Waitakere Ranges, which encompasses more than 16,000 hectares of native temperate rainforest, has 250km of walking and hiking tracks.
  • Manukau city in South Auckland has the world’s largest Polynesian population.

Travel Tips

As well as being the country’s main gateway for international travellers, Auckland is home to a third of New Zealanders and ranks as one of the top 10 places in the world to live - listed by Lonely Planet in the Top 10 Cities to visit in 2014. Waiheke Island was listed in the Top 10 Regions to visit in 2016.