Forget Melbourne, Sydney, and even Bali if you’re thinking about a quick getaway – Auckland is a mere 3 hours away and filled with more delicious foodie spots than you could ever hope to fit into a weekend! But if you decide to take advantage of Emirates daily flights and hop over there, we’ve eaten our way through the best things to do in Auckland (in the name of research of course), to find out where you should make the most of your time.
What makes a good flight is different for every traveller. For some it might be the leg room, for others it’s sitting next to a sexy stranger, but for us, it is as always, all about the food. And if you want your trip to get off to a delicious start, you should definitely fly Emirates
. In Business, you’ll get a six course meal prepared by Emirates’ master chefs, along with award-winning wines (hello, champagne breakfast!), cocktails and snacks. Flying Economy? Don’t worry, there’ll still be a 3 course breakfast or 5 course dinner for you, along with complimentary wine, beer, spirits and soft drink.
Breakfast: Oaken | CBD
Don’t be perturbed by the lack of eggs benny on this menu – you’ll forget all about your usual order once Oaken’s breakfast artwork arrives in front of you – and maybe even the waterside view. You could stick to the safe option of their signature house cured bacon and scrambled egg jaffle, or go with the jaw dropping cold smoked salmon with shaved cauliflower and yoghurt.
Snacks: Milse | CBD
You won’t have to walk far from breakfast to get to Milse – and you’ll be glad you made the detour once you spot the cabinets full of stick gelatos, jars of decadent gateux and colourful macarons. You may wind up with a sugar high just from walking by.
It seems the Southern soul food trend isn’t just restricted to Oz, and Miss Clawdy is dishing up a seriously indulgent version. Tuck into cornbread, ribs, crispy jerk chicken and jambalaya, and finish off with one of their cookie ice cream sandwiches.
Dinner: Masu | CBD
Masu is all about Japanese fare – but not as you’ve ever seen it before. The only way to get the full experience is to have the chef decide what you’ll eat and then feast on plates and plates of sashimi, sushi, tempura prawns, gyoza, beef fillet and pork belly. Hot tip: Order the crispy soft shell crab sliders – it’s a secret off the menu item known only to the regulars. Also, save room for dessert.
Dessert: Giapo | CBD
Auckland’s answer to Gelato Messina, Giapo scoops up ice cream cones that will have you drooling before you even have a lick. Decked out in chocolate dipped cones and topped with everything from doughnuts to chunks of honeycomb, you may just want to come back for seconds.
What to do: Explore the laneways of the Auckland CBD, which all seem to be filled with quirky boutiques, all the way down to the glam new Britomart precinct. If you get bored of shopping, drop in to the Auckland Art Gallery to get in a bit of culture, or head to the Auckland Domain for a wander through the gardens.
Breakfast: Rosie | Parnell
Opposite the bright and cheerful Parnell rose gardens (well, as long as Auckland isn’t putting on it’s usual drizzle), Rosie dishes up seasonal feeds like crumpets with apple and rhubarb, and spicy pumpkin breakfast salads (don’t worry, there’s pancetta and poached eggs involved).
This quirky café has a cult following, and it’s all for their epic freakshakes. Towering with cream, cookies, chocolates, waffles, fairy floss and even lollipops, you won’t be able to finish one – but you will have the best Instagram post of your entire trip.
You wouldn’t think a burger place would be known for vegetables, but Burger Burger’s charred broccoli with garlic butter is almost as infamous as their slow braised lamb burger with tomato jam, mint yoghurt and feta. Bonus, if you’re feeling a little heavy after the milkshake, you can put it on a lettuce bun instead.
Dinner: Depot | CBD
Hot tip: When asked where you want to sit at the front desk, say you want to be up at the kitchen bar. Here you’ll have a bird’s eye view of the madness that goes on in the kitchen of chef Al Brown, and might even have him explain what’s on your NZ meat board and dish up your lamb ribs and crisp potato skins loaded with manchego.
Don’t worry, you won’t have to walk far from dinner – The Fed is right next door to Depot. Plus, you’ll want to save your Uber fare for the trip back to the hotel – after a trio plate of The Fed’s pumpkin pie, lemon meringue pie and banana toffee pie, there’ll be no walking anwywhere.
What to do: Wander up and down Parnell Road and check out the trendy boutiques, take a stroll up Mt. Eden (it’s ok, it’s a short walk) for epic views of the city without the Sky Tower price tag.
flies from Brisbane to Auckland and vice versa daily – so there’s always a good time for a quick weekend away!
Words by Ranyhyn Akui