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What's Auckland Like?
Vibrant does not even begin to describe the fast-paced, lively, colorful environment of Auckland. From buzzing urban streets to tranquil waterfronts, the city has something for every taste and interest. Auckland's diverse population makes for cafes and restaurants offering an impressive span of international cuisine intermingled with shops selling everything from souvenir scarves of Moreno sheep's wool to designer shoes. Along the same streets find art galleries, entertainment venues, and of course the iconic Sky Tower, which gives visitors the best views of the city as well as a chance to take an exhilarating SkyWalk - a stroll around the outside of the tower - or SkyJump.
Auckland also has plenty of opportunities for those interested in a less urban environment. A short drive from the city center, you can enjoy a day on either the rugged, black sand beaches of the west coast or the tranquil, golden sand beaches of the east coast. Ferries run between the harbors and several of the islands and dormant volcanic cones, where visitors can hike, mountain bike, and explore. As New Zealand's biggest city and commercial hub, Auckland is well connected by road, rail, and air to the rest of the country, making it easy to take in the many variations of the New Zealand landscape of a weekend.
Region and Population
Over 1.5 million New Zealanders and internationals make their home in Auckland, making it the nation's most populous city by far. 40% of the city's population was born outside of New Zealand, many coming from Asia and the Pacific Islands. The surrounding region, also called Auckland, encompasses the city as well as nearby smaller towns and rural areas.
Auckland enjoys a subtropical climate, experiencing summers that are warm and humid and winters that are mild and damp. The Auckland region is the one of the warmest and sunniest in New Zealand. In the summers, which span from December to February, temperatures rise to 66 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius), while in the winter months of June, July, and August, temperatures drop to 52 degrees Fahrenheit (11 degrees Celsius). Humidity remains high all year around, and the city receives large amounts of rainfall, though more in the winter than the summer.