Comfort Inn & Suites Kudos
203 Kirkbride Road
Phone: (64) 9 2759988
Fax: (64) 9 5239285
Ambury has been farmed for hundreds of years, first by Maori and then by Europeans. Today Ambury Farm (133 hectares) is a working farm, stocked primarily with horses, sheep and cattle. Its location on Manukau Harbour also makes it a popular destination with bird watchers who look for godwit and knot as well as pied oyster catchers and wrybill. Feed the baby farm animals, see demonstrations of sheep shearing and wood chopping, ride a pony or a tractor!
Since they joined the Australian National Rugby League competition in 1995, New Zealand's only team in the event has promised much, but is experiencing a long hard slog to the top! Last season they made it to the final "Top 8" for the first time. When the Warriors do click, the quality of play is exceptional. A loyal following turns out regularly at Ericsson Stadium, to cheer them on. Look for tickets between March and October.
Multimedia, lasers and a planetarium are all part of the varied "edu-tainment" available at the Stardome Observatory, an addition to the observatory, which opened in 1967. The director is professional astronomer Ian Griffen, and after the show visitors can look through one of the observatory's telescopes at the stars (the biggest is 50 centimeters). A shop offers souvenir books, toys and posters. As well as entertaining shows, the observatory is home to research projects into asteroids. Check the web site for show schedules.
Sadly, the eponymous pine tree at the summit had to be removed following several attacks on its 105-year-old trunk. Known by Maori as Maungakiekie, or hill of the kiekie vine, One Tree Hill (elevation 183 meters, or 600 feet) is a 20,000-year-old scoria cone offering exquisite views over central Auckland and surrounding areas. Located in Cornwall Park, One Tree Hill was heavily fortified in Maori times and has the remains of extensive earthworks and terraces. The summit is accessible by car or walking track. Admission is free.
Canyoning, although well established overseas, is relatively new in New Zealand. Participants travel down a stream by means of a combination of abseiling, sliding and jumping off waterfalls. The venue is the Blue Canyon, in the Waitakere Ranges on the rugged West Coast. The adventure takes all day - you will get your money's worth. After a half-hour hike to the stream, there are 15 waterfalls ranging from two to 25 meters in height to be negotiated. Other trips visit the Coromandel Peninsula. All equipment (including wet suits), food and transport is provided. Training in abseiling is also given.
For an adventurous full day of canyoning, abseiling, and just plain having fun, this is the company you should contact. After an initial 20 minute hike, the next two and a half hours are spent negotiating a river, ending at the beautiful but notorious Piha Beach. Lunch is provided at the conclusion of the trip. The best part is that none of the waterfalls or cliffs have to be leapt from or abseiled down (though these are the recommended routes), there is always an easier option. All gear is provided. There are discounts for more than one person.
With eight hectares (23 acres) of fun, rides, attractions and entertainment, New Zealand's top theme park is located in Manukau City, just minutes from Auckland International Airport and a short drive from downtown Auckland. The park features a giant drop tower, a corkscrew roller coaster, log flume, and Cadbury Land Castle with rides just for the little ones. The whole family will have a whole day of fun. Plenty of free parking and refreshments are available.
Located in the lush suburb of Epsom, the Alexander Park raceway is more commonly known as Alexander Park to the locals. It includes the Auckland Trotting Club and the New Zealand Trotting Hall of Fame. Once known for the quality of horse breeds and races, the mid 80's caused a slack in interest due to other forms of entertainment like casinos, lotteries, gaming cafes etc. Subsequently the management shifted its focus to other vistas. Besides its obvious equestrian connections, there is also a sports bar and conference facilities available for business events. One can enjoy a dinner whilst having a spectacular view of the night races. Check website for details on timings of events and races.
Dedicated to the victims of the World War II, the War Memorial Park is an open green space in Mt Roskill. The park comprises a number of football fields where youngsters practice their games, and a jogging track for the fitness enthusiasts. Cultural events often take place at the park, which involves people in large numbers. The popular venue - Mt Roskill War Memorial Hall is also located within its premises and is regularly used for festivals and cultural events.
If you're a racing fan, you must head to Ellerslie Racecourse to get a glimpse of all the action. This renowned racecourse is famous for its well-manicured gardens and lawns and hosts more than 25 races in a year. The Ellerslie Event Centre, a popular multi-purpose venue, is also located inside these grounds. So get out those fancy hats and get ready for a day at the races!
The Panmure open-air swim center is a popular destination with students and young families seeking recreation, through to those people swimming for fitness. With three large pools, including one with outdoor high and low diving boards, a water slide, large spa pool and children's area, Panmure Lagoon is just good clean fun. A wide range of swimming classes are available for all levels. Also on hand is a complete weight room. The clientèle is diverse, the cost reasonable and the premises are always tidy and well looked after making Panmure Swimming a pleasant experience.
This 600 square foot garden has taken advantage of every inch of space. Dedicated to Tropical and Sub Tropical Plants, the garden includes a plethora of Palms, Cycads, Cordylines, Gingers, Bromeliads, Heliconias, Aroids and ferns, Sub Tropical trees and shrubs, water plants and succulents. Also among the delights of this garden is a small pond and an aviary featuring love birds. Space for picnics can be arranged by appointment, and admission is NZD10.