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If you’re studying English in Auckland, don’t let the cost of attractions stop you from getting out and experiencing all the awesome things the city has to offer. There are plenty of activities and events that you can enjoy without spending anything at all. Below we’ve listed 10 free activities in Auckland. Each of these will show you a different aspect of the city and give you plenty of opportunities to practise English!
Did you know that there’s a volcano right in the centre of Auckland? Don’t worry – it’s a dormant volcano that last erupted 28,000 years ago! A visit to the top of Mount Eden will put you almost 200 metres above sea level and give you a 360° view of Auckland. Mount Eden is located just south of the city centre and the way to top is clearly signposted.
Auckland Free Walking Tours is a collective of individuals who are so passionate about Auckland that they offer free walking tours through the city’s rich and varied neighbourhoods. The tours leave from Queens Wharf Village at 10:30am daily (except the winter months when no tours are offered). The tour lasts 2.5 – 3 hours, so be sure to wear comfy shoes and bring an umbrella or raincoat – the tour continues on rain or shine. A ‘koha’ (gift, donation), which helps fund the collective, is appreciated at the end of the tour.
The Domain is Auckland’s oldest park. It’s a huge park with many different sections and features, including glasshouses, duck ponds, open greens, and formal gardens. It’s a popular place for a picnic when the weather is fine. Grab some friends, pack some food, and head to the park – your day is sorted!
A visit to the Auckland Art Gallery is the perfect way to spend a rainy day. The museum features over 15,000 pieces of national and international art and provides free guided tours, which is a perfect way to learn new vocabulary and it will also help your listening skills!
Auckland hosts heaps of free cultural events and festivals each year. Some of the better-known festivals are the Pasifika Festival (March) and the Auckland Lantern Festival (February). A complete rundown of festivals and events in Auckland can be found here. These events are the perfect place to experience Kiwi culture and practise your English with other festivalgoers.
If you’re interested in outdoor markets, then you’ll love a visit to Victoria Park Market. This was Auckland’s first outdoor market and continues to be one of its most popular market areas. The market features food stalls and restaurants, arts and crafts, galleries, and handmade items from NZ artisans. Victoria Park Market is located downtown and open every day.
The Wynyard Quarter, Auckland’s newest waterfront precinct, is a great place to chill out with friends. Previously an industrial and port area, the Wynyard Quarter was closed off to the public for many years. It has recently undergone a complete transformation and is now home to residential buildings, businesses, restaurants, and outdoor leisure areas. Surrounded on 3 sides by the Waitemata Harbour, it’s the perfect place to cool down on a hot day. The district hosts free cultural events and screens outdoor movies in the summer.
Huffer, a Kiwi clothing label, hosts Free Coffee Friday each week. Stop by for a freebie and check out their latest designs. It’s a great way to enjoy the city’s morning buzz and meet some new people. Grab your free coffee between 7:30 and 10:30am from their shop located at 12 Custom Street in Britomart. If you haven’t tried a flat white yet, this is your chance!
New Zealand has a rich maritime history, which is hardly a surprise for a nation that is completely surrounded by water. The Maritime Museum is the best place to learn about how the ocean has defined our history and shaped the Kiwi identity. This is another great option for a rainy day!
This charming park is famous for its rose gardens and is home to the Parnell Festival of Roses each year. The rose gardens are contained within a larger park area that also has a small beach. The best time to visit is between November and March, when most of the roses are in bloom. The park is located in the Parnell neighbourhood of Auckland.