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Kiwi Countdown: How to Spend New Year’s Eve in Auckland

Kiwi Countdown How to Spend New Year’s Eve in Auckland

Time flies, and before we know it, a new year is already arriving! As the clock ticks towards midnight, our city bursts with festivity.

There are so many places and events in Auckland you can visit for the year-end. To help you out, we’ve compiled some amazing things you can do so you can end the year with a bang.

Witness the spectacular fireworks display over Waitemata Harbour

– Photo credit: islanddirectnz

Address: Auckland Region, New Zealand

For a classic way to welcome the new year, visit Waitemata Harbour. Located northwest of the Auckland CBD, this harbour not only features an amazing view of the sea, but it also has a clear view of the biggest fireworks display in the city!

Additionally, there are plenty of attractions you can visit nearby while waiting for the big show to start. Just east of Waitemata Harbour, you’ll find Queen Street, which is filled with stores and malls if you want to do some last-minute shopping.

If you also want to take some sunset photos before the year ends, the nearby Auckland Harbour Bridge is one of the best spots to do that. Just make sure to be back in Waitemata Harbour before 10:00 PM!

Pro tip: There’s always a real possibility of rainfall happening on New Year’s Eve. Make sure to check the weather forecast first before heading out, and bring an umbrella with you just in case.

Take a leisurely walk along Tamaki Drive

Photo credit: wanseop_photo

Address: Tamaki Drive, Auckland, New Zealand

Whether you’re waiting for New Year’s Eve to arrive or you’re looking for a place to visit on January 1, Tamaki Drive is here for you! Located east of the Auckland CBD, this place is very popular, as it provides easy access to local beaches in the area.

Aside from its lovely beaches, this seaside road is also quite popular, thanks to its cool sea breeze and stunning view of the city skyline. Also, have I already mentioned the majestic pōhutukawa trees that line the side of this road?

As there are no tall buildings or obstructions to be found here, Tamaki Drive is also a great place to watch the grand fireworks display. You can also do some stargazing before the countdown due to the lack of high-intensity artificial lighting here.

Pro tip: Make sure to arrive early to avoid any inconveniences. Some parts of the city, like Tamaki Drive, are closed off to motorists from 11:00 PM on December 31 until 1:00 AM on January 1 to allow people to move freely during festivities.

Explore the Viaduct Harbour and its award-winning restaurants

Address: Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

As we welcome the new year, it’s a good time for us to try out some amazing dishes and drinks we have never tasted before! Our next destination, Viaduct Harbour, is known for its world-class restaurants, cafes, and bars.

Some examples would be the Grand Harbour Chinese Restaurant, known for its delicious roast duck and seafood, and the French Press Café, a place based on the famous sidewalk cafes of Paris.

Aside from the delicious food and drinks, the beautiful evening scenery in Viaduct Harbour is worth seeing before New Year’s Eve. The boats and yachts that come and go set a relaxing mood throughout your evening stroll here.

Pro tip: Restaurants in Viaduct Harbour tend to get filled quickly during New Year’s Eve. Make sure to book a reservation at least two weeks in advance if you want to enjoy a relaxing dinner here before the year ends.

Hike up Mount Eden and enjoy a panoramic view of the city

Photo credit: posgosnoograss

Address: 250 Mount Eden Road, Mount Eden, Auckland

Mount Eden, located south of the Auckland CBD, is a great place to welcome the arrival of a new year. With a height of 196 metres, this mountain will provide you with a spectacular view of the downtown area and its nearby harbours.

The best thing about spending the evening here for New Year’s is its relaxing ambience and impressive amount of greenery. In my opinion, this place is the best if you want to view the New Year’s Eve fireworks display from afar.

Also, there are plenty of picnic spots here where you and your family can bond and reminisce about the good times together. Just make sure to be responsible and don’t leave any trash before leaving.

Pro tip: Make sure to not bring any alcoholic beverages before visiting Mount Eden. Drinking alcohol and smoking are banned here at all times.

Mingle with the lively crowd in Silo Park


Address: Corner Beaumont Street and Jellicoe, Jellicoe Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Silo Park, a public park located west of Viaduct Harbour, is a fun place to be if you’re fond of parties and hanging out with huge crowds. It served as a petrochemical storage hub before being repurposed into a park.

During New Year’s Eve, Silo Park hosts a massive year-end party where you can treat yourself to some delicious snacks and drinks while waiting for the New Year’s countdown.

Many local artists also perform here to keep the crowd hyped up before the countdown. If you want to watch them perform, I strongly suggest you get here early before the park becomes too crowded!

Pro tip: Silo Park is home to many works of art made by Maori artists. Use this handy map to find them all quickly and take some photos before the year ends!

Welcome the new year atop the Sky Tower


Address: Victoria Street West, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 363 6000

If you want to see fireworks display up close, then there’s no other place you’d want to be other than atop the Sky Tower. The tallest free-standing structure in Auckland, this tower is where the New Year’s fireworks display is held every year.

Those fireworks are launched from this tower’s levels 55, 61, and 64. You’ll have the chance to see them all from the observation deck, which provides an unobstructed 360-degree view of the entire city.

However, it’s no surprise that spots on the observation deck are in high demand every New Year’s Eve. Make sure to get your tickets here as soon as they’re available for purchase.

Pro tip:
Before the big show, make sure to treat yourself to an amazing dinner in the Orbit 360° Dining on the observation deck. 

Its dining room is quite impressive, as it does a full rotation every hour, giving you a chance to fully observe the Auckland skyline while you dine!

Take a ferry to Devonport and get an amazing view of the Auckland CBD


Address: 32004 Auckland 0744

For those looking for a new way to spend their New Year’s Eve, Devonport is waiting for you! A harborside suburb located northeast of the Auckland CBD, this place hosts its own festivities and events where even non-residents are welcome to join.

Their New Year’s Eve party, dubbed Eve in the City, features a wide range of food and beverage vendors. The event also has plenty of exciting activities you can participate in, like laser tag, silent disco, and carnival rides.

However, the highlight of the event is its two massive fireworks displays, which take place at 9:30 PM and 12:00 AM. The event starts at 6:00 PM, so make sure to be here already by then if you want to make the most of your New Year’s Eve!

Pro tip:
Because most of the event takes place either on the streets or on a field, it’s a good idea to bring a picnic blanket where you can comfortably sit. 

Also, you’re not allowed to bring your own alcoholic beverage because Devonport is a non-BYOB place.

Experience a simple NYE celebration in the Waterview Heritage Area

Photo credit: traceyofalltrades


Address: 15A Cowley Street, Waterview, Auckland 1026, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 301 0101

Welcoming the new year doesn’t always have to be a loud and bombastic experience. If you prefer a simpler way to celebrate New Year’s Eve, come down to the Waterview Heritage Area, which is just southeast of the Auckland CBD.

This scenic park offers a great view of the harbour and the nearby motorway. Furthermore, it has an archaeological area where you’ll find relics of the past, including an early flour mill, tannery, and quarry.

Waterview Heritage Area also has its own playground, where your kids can play while waiting for the next year to arrive. If you brought some sparklers to light up once the clock strikes 12, make sure to dispose of them properly before leaving.

Pro tip: Please read carefully any safety signs you might come across during your visit here, as some parts of the park have uneven and steep slopes. Also, it’s a good idea to bring a flashlight with you to light up your path come nighttime.