February 13, 2014
I’m slowly getting used to the idea that it is summer here in New Zealand. The biggest snow storm of the year hit DC as we were beginning our month long road trip from Auckland to Queenstown. While we were strolling the streets of Auckland in short sleeves a friend sent us a photo of our yard, now blanketed in a foot of heavy wet snow.
The 20 minute drive from the airport into Auckland took much longer during the morning commute hours. Once we were in the city center, however, the traffic was tolerable and we easily found the Hotel DeBrett. We left our bags at the hotel, found a cup of much needed coffee and started the Lonely Planet walking tour of the city, starting at St Kevin’s Arcade and ending at Wynyard Quarter along the harbor.
Auckland looks much like other pretty coastal cities of the developed world, although its mixed architectural styles- old colonial, Deco, 20th century modern – give the city a theme park feel.
The largest city in New Zealand, Auckland has a young playful vide – goat statue in the park, shipping containers turned into an outdoor reading room, colorful lanterns hanging in the trees for the Lantern Festival, and lively pedestrian zones.