A trip to Auckland, New Zealand isn’t complete without jumping on one of the many daily ferries out of the city and cruising to the outlying islands.

Straddling the Auckland volcanic field, there are some 50 volcanoes that formed into cones, lakes, lagoons and islands some miles from the mainland.

Some of these islands that formed off the coast of Auckland in the Hauraki Gulf include Devonport, Motutapu Island, Waiheke Island, Rangitoto Island and Great Barrier Island. And these destinations have become very popular for both travellers and locals alike. Using a ferry in Auckland is an exciting way to travel through the city.

Here are some top places to visit for Auckland sightseeing

Devonport

This is the oldest suburb outside of Auckland and serves as a place of residence for many people who work in the city. Comprised of historic Victoria architecture and villas, the island is comprised of beach, specialty shops and many restaurants. But a trip to Devonport wouldn’t be complete without visiting Devonport Chocolates.

With its chocolate factory located in the seaside village, tasting this hand-made New Zealand chocolate never tasted so good. The Devonport to Auckland ferry is sure to be a hit with chocolate lovers and history buffs alike!

Rangitoto Island

An extinct volcano in the middle of the Hauraki Gulf, Rangitoto Island erupted some 600 years ago. Since then, the island flourished unique fauna and rugged steep slopes of ash. Rangitoto is a popular destination for adventure travellers. With steep terrain to the summit, climbing this volcano can be challenging.

It is also a camping destination; many groups put together overnight or week-long camping trips. The Rangitoto ferry is an amazing choice for adventure-seekers.

Motutapu Island

Located right next to Rangitoto Island, this island is easily accessible with walking paths that connect the two. Motutapu Island is a pest-free, uninhabited island that provides adventure travelers a day full of exploration. There are many walking paths, bays and hiking trails filled with lava crops and native bush to the area. But ferry services are limited to Rangitoto (the only way to get to Motutapu) so keep your eye on the time. Getting stranded, with no stores or accommodations, wouldn’t make for a pleasant night.

Waiheke Island

With a plethora of activities, a day on Waiheke might not be long enough. From wine tasting, to bike riding, to beach going, this island is filled with something for everyone. There are many tours to accompany your ferry ride such as a Hop-on Hop-off tour, food and wine tour and a coastal walk and a few other adventures to make your time on Waiheke Island a memorable one.

This island is a popular summer destination with many beach accommodations and restaurants overlooking the ocean. With many walking trails and bike route, Waiheke can be as relaxed or as adventurous as you want to make it. The Waiheke ferry in Auckland is a great option to add to your itinerary.

Summary

So the next time you are in Auckland, make the most of exploring the Hauraki Gulf island hopping.

Fullers’ services operate multiple daily vessels — depending on day and season — to the various islands, bays and ports in the Hauraki Gulf. The large passenger vessels makes exploring each of the islands as easy as jumping on board. Not only does Fullers operate frequent ferry trips departing from Auckland harbor, they also provide tours and chartered services around Hauraki Gulf. 

The ferry terminal is conveniently located in central Auckland behind the historic Ferry Building. Not only is Fullers a leader in ferry operations, but their leisurely trips are also comfortable, accommodating and affordable.

Read about the best places to visit in auckland

Author

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    I'm sure you've had similar experiences I had whilst traveling. You're in a certain place and a fellow traveler, or a local, tip you off on a little-known beach, bar or accommodation. Great travel tips from other travelers or locals always add something special to our travels. That was the inspiration for Travel Dudes.