Our 5 favourite free places in Auckland

Summer is coming to an end so it’s time to head outdoors and make the most of the last few warm weeks. We’ve picked some of our favourite free places in Auckland to take the family for a fun day out.

Kelmarna Gardens
12 Hukanui Crescent, Ponsonby
Hidden behind houses in the city-fringe suburb of Ponsonby is Kelmarna Gardens, an organic community garden and farm. Everyone is welcome so come along to enjoy the atmosphere and buy freshly picked produce, flowers and seedlings from the garden shop. You’ll find chickens, cattle, beehives, worm farms, vegetable gardens and even a Welsh Timor pony named Jafa. Kelmarna is a sensitive space where food is grown, so please be mindful of the vegetables and walk with care.

Mission Bay Beach
Tamaki Drive, Mission Bay

We’re lucky enough to have an impressive range of beaches in Auckland, and Mission Bay is one of the best. Admire the view of Rangitoto from the white sand beach, splash around in the art deco fountain pool and enjoy the fantastic playground with a special junior play area. When it’s time for some shade, grab some food from one of the many local cafes and restaurants or find a cool spot on the grass and set up a picnic.

Auckland Botanic Gardens
102 Hill Road, Manurewa

There are 64 hectares of beautiful gardens and native forest waiting for you to explore at the Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manurewa. Get lost in Maui’s magical maze, visit the resident worms in the Edible Garden and feed the ducks with special 20c duck food from the visitor centre. If you’re running out of things to do, see how many different plants you can spot – there are more than 10,000 from all around the world.

Ambury Regional Park
43 Ambury Road, Mangere Bridge

For an animal-loving family, there is no better destination than Ambury Regional Park. It’s big enough to spend the whole day exploring, but start with the 45-minute Family Farm Walk, which will introduce you to all the animals and has pushchair and wheelchair access. You’ll meet sheep, cows, goats, pigs, chickens, turkey, rabbits and maybe even a peacock.

Milford to Takapuna Coastal Walk
Park and start at Craig Road, Milford

If you’re up for some exercise, head to Milford Beach and try out the 30-minute coastal walk to Takapuna. You’ll be treated to beautiful sea views from start to finish, and little ones will love exploring the rock pools along the way. Spend the rest of the day relaxing on the beach or browsing the diverse shopping and dining scene that Takapuna has to offer.

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