Week 15 – Auckland 

Auckland is home to approximately one third of the population of New Zealand. I spent three nights here which is more than enough time to explore the city.

I think Auckland is quite faceless, doesn’t have any real identity or know what it wants to be. The city is chock-a-block full of roadworks too so maybe there’s a grand plan to improve it, who knows. 

Apparently one third of the city is now made up of Asian immigrants and since I was last here in 2005 it feels like it’s morphing into another Asian city like Singapore. 

The Sky Tower is the main architectural site and you can see it wherever you go and they do a good job of lighting it up at night.

SkyTower by day
SkyTower by night

The art gallery is free and had a good collection of Maori portraits as well as twentieth century international Impressionism. 

Rangi Topeora by Gotfried Lindauer

Vanessa Bell Pregnant by Duncan Grant – 1918

Portrait of Anne Howard-Vyse by Tilly Kettle – 1780

My other highlight was The Academy cinema which I visited three times and it shows a great range of independent world cinema.

I saw the sci-fi film ‘Arrival’, the Japanese anime film ‘Your Name’ & the Australian film ‘Girl Asleep’, all of which I really enjoyed and recommend.

Having travelled across the whole country I have to say that Auckland would be the last place I’d settle if I had the choice, though I guess the majority of jobs are here.

New Zealand’s best qualities are the stunning & unique scenery and the friendly people. I hope to return one day soon…

However, I’m excited to be returning to my second home today…..California!

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