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A Sight to Behold: Top Lookout Spots in Auckland

A Sight to Behold Top Lookout Spots in Auckland

Auckland is a vibrant and beautiful city that offers a mix of natural beauty and urban charm that’s sure to bedazzle anyone. From its city skyline to serene coastal vistas, you definitely won’t run out of things to be amazed at when you visit this city.

Thankfully, Auckland has a plethora of lookout spots where you can enjoy its beauty to the fullest. Let’s check them out and discuss which of them is the best and why you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to visit them!

Mount Eden Lookout

Photo credit: bonnie_li996


Address: 5172079, Mount Eden, Auckland 1024, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Mount Eden, also known as Maungawhau, is a volcanic cone located in the middle of Auckland City. It once served as a Māori pā (fortified settlement) where thousands of people used to live.

Today, it’s one of the city’s most popular natural wonders. With a height of 196 metres, Mount Eden offers breathtaking views of the entire Auckland skyline and its surrounding suburbs.

At first glance, many would think the path to the peak would be an arduous and tiring journey. Thankfully, that’s not the case because Mount Eden’s pathways and roads are well-maintained and easy to walk on.

Aside from an observation deck, the peak also has a picnic spot where you can have a relaxing lunch with your friends and family.

Pro tip:
Once you’re done admiring the beauty of Auckland from Mount Eden’s peak, make sure to visit the Maungawhau Visitor Experience Centre. 

Here, you’ll have the chance to learn more about Mount Eden through the centre’s interactive augmented reality model.

The centre also has a nearby cafe where you can enjoy a delicious cup of coffee and snacks before returning to the base of the mountain.

Waiatarua Lookout

Photo credit: yuewenhuhu

Address: 600 Scenic Drive, Waiatarua, Auckland 0612, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 34 minutes

Our next lookout is located at the midpoint of the iconic Scenic Drive, a road that runs through the western outskirts of Auckland City. This road was opened in 1914 during the 1913–1914 Auckland Exhibition.

The best thing about driving through here is the sweeping views over the western parts of the city. Furthermore, you’ll also be able to see the lush greenery of the Waitākere Ranges.

Once you reach the lookout, make sure to exercise caution, as past its barriers is a deep ravine. After taking some photos and admiring the view, you may choose to drive back to the city or visit the equally impressive Pukematekeo Lookout nearby. 

Pro tip:
Throughout your drive along Scenic Drive, you’ll encounter local attractions, like a disused winery and a native plant shop. 

You can also make a quick stop at the nearby Arataki Visitor Centre if you want to learn more about the Waitākere Ranges’ native flora and fauna.

Pukematekeo Lookout

Photo credit:

Address: Waitākere, Auckland 0781, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 39 minutes

After your visit to Waiatarua Lookout, be sure to stop by Pukematekeo Hill too! Its name, Pukematekeo, refers to its geographical position as the final hill of the Waitākere Ranges.

This beautiful natural wonder was once within the traditional rohe of the Te Kawerau ā Maki iwi and held spiritual and cultural significance to the Maori people. Today, it serves as a sanctuary for kauri trees in the Waitākere Ranges Regional Park.

To get here, you only need to continue driving down Scenic Drive until you reach the foot of the hill. Then, a short track will lead you straight to the top of Pukematekeo Hill within a couple of minutes.

Once you reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with an amazing 360-degree panorama that includes the Tasman Sea, Manukau Harbour, and Auckland City.

Pro tip:
Some parts of the track leading to the peak of Pukematekeo Hill can be pretty steep. Make sure to wear comfortable footwear like jandals and running shoes when visiting this lookout!

Viaduct Lookout


Address: Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 373 4141

Our next lookout spot takes us back right in the middle of Auckland. Known as Viaduct Lookout, this simple yet eye-catching attraction is located in Auckland’s most popular commercial harbour.

Unlike the elevated lookout spots I mentioned earlier, this one is near sea level. Here, you’ll have a great view looking towards the beautiful Waitemata Harbour and the boats that sail across its pristine waters.

Furthermore, just behind you is the equally impressive Auckland skyline and its world-famous attractions like the Sky Tower, New Zealand Maritime Museum, and St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

With all this amazing scenery around you, it would be a mistake not to bring a camera with you!

Pro tip:
Since you’re already in Viaduct Harbour, you might as well explore its famous restaurants and bars! Some amazing restaurants you have to try out are Bivacco, an Italian restaurant, and Boracay Garden, a Filipino-themed restaurant.

Cyril Bassett VC Lookout

Photo credit: jacalina_co


Address: 87 Stanley Point Road, Stanley Point, Auckland 0624, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Aside from the Viaduct Lookout, the Cyril Bassett VC Lookout also offers you an amazing view of the Waitemata Harbour. It was named after Cyril Royston Guyton Bassett, a New Zealand soldier who received the Victoria Cross during World War I.

As mentioned earlier, this lookout spot provides an impressive view of the harbour as well as Auckland’s skyline. It also has ample space suitable for leisurely activities like photography, picnics, and relaxation.

Another amazing thing you’ll see during your visit here is the commemorative plaque that tells the story of Cyril in detail and his heroic exploits in the infamous Gallipoli Campaign, where thousands of ANZAC soldiers lost their lives.

Pro tip:
Make sure to wear a scarf or a jacket during your visit here. 

That’s because the Cyril Bassett VC Lookout tends to experience strong gusts of wind due to its proximity to the sea as well as the lack of high-rise buildings in the area.

Huia Point Lookout

Photo credit: pomegranate_planet

Address: Huia Point Lookout Road, Huia, Auckland 0604, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 39 minutes

Another amazing lookout spot outside of the city is Huia Point Lookout, located southwest of the Auckland CBD. What I love about this place is that it offers breathtaking views from a cliffside vantage point.

Here, you’ll be able to enjoy a 285-degree panorama of the coastline, Awhitu Peninsula, and open sea. This lookout spot also provides a clear sight of the numerous boats and kayaks that dot the pristine waters of the bay below.

While Huia Point Lookout is a pleasure to visit anytime, I find the place at its most beautiful during the night. That’s because the lack of artificial lighting in this area makes it very easy to do some stargazing here.

The road leading to this lookout point is made of gravel, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes!

Pro tip:
If you can’t come here during the night, the next best time you can visit is during high tide in the daytime for the most majestic views. 

That’s because the sun’s warm glow and the sea’s shimmering waters form an extraordinarily picturesque setting you don’t want to miss.

Parkinson Lookout

Photo credit: lindalq18

Address: 551 Scenic Drive, Waiatarua, Auckland 0612, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 32 minutes

As you’ve probably noticed, many famous lookout spots outside of Auckland are found along the Waitākere Ranges. Our next one, Parkinson Lookout, is one of those and is also located along the route of Scenic Drive.

This prominent viewpoint lets you enjoy an unobstructed view of the Hauraki Gulf and the city. Furthermore, the lush greenery that surrounds it lets you have a relaxing moment as you bask in the beauty of Auckland City.

Once you’re done taking in the sights, you might want to explore the nearby trails to fully see the beauty of the Waitākere Ranges. In fact, just north of Parkinson Lookout, you’ll find the majestic Fairy Falls waiting for you!

Pro tip: Please take note that the pathway that connects Parkinson Lookout to Scenic Drive is covered with thick vegetation. It’s recommended that you bring a flashlight with you to help you navigate this path, especially at night.

Te Waha Point Lookout

Photo credit: teaohuri

Address: 236 Anawhata Road, Waitākere, Anawhata 0772, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 57 minutes

For the best views of the Tasman Sea, check out Te Waha Point Lookout. Located on Anawhata, this cliffside lookout point has an elevation of 95 metres, allowing you to fully see North Piha Beach and Whites Beach as well.

To get here, you’ll need to trek the 2-kilometre Laird Thomson Track that connects Te Waha Point Lookout to North Piha Road. Most of the trail follows the edge of the cliff, so you’ll already have an amazing view of the sea on your way to the lookout point.

Alternatively, you can choose the Rose Track to the north, which connects Te Waha Point Lookout with Anawhata Road. This route is a bit longer, but it’s the safer and easier option between the two.

Pro tip: Most parts of the trail leading to Te Waha Point Lookout tend to be slippery, especially after heavy rain. Make sure to wear shoes that are appropriate for trekking when visiting this lookout point!

Donald Mclean Lookout

Photo credit: the_nk_world_

Address: Huia, Auckland 0604, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Distance from AKL CBD: 54 minutes

Our next lookout point is on Mount Donald Mclean. Named after a prominent New Zealand politician and land commissioner during the 19th century, this mountain has an elevation of 389 metres and is located to the south of the Waitākere Ranges.

The best thing about the Donald Mclean Lookout is its panoramic views of the Waitakere Ranges, Manukau Harbour, and central Auckland. The lush forests that surround it also give the place a peaceful vibe where you can relax and destress.

However, please take note that this mountain is a bit far from the nearest road. You’ll need to trek a moderately challenging 4.7-kilometre trail before you can reach its peak.

Pets are welcome at this lookout point. However, they are required to be on a leash at all times.

Pro tip: It will take you at least an hour and a half to complete the Mount Donald Mclean Trail. Don’t forget to bring a bottle of water with you to make sure you stay hydrated throughout your trek!