It was a long trip (collectively M and I have flown around the entire world in the last few months), but we finally arrived in Auckland! Due to the flight schedule, I was prepared to wait eight hours for M at Auckland Airport, which turned into a ten-hour wait when the pilot announced we were over an hour early. I was not happy about landing at 4:30am and waiting around until 2:00pm, but sleeping, reading guidebooks and watching the planes killed the time well. Luckily, neither of us were too jetlagged so the trip from the airport into the city center (about an hour) and then from the city center to our hotel (about 20 minutes) was not terribly arduous. The hotel’s maze-like layout did confuse us for a while, leading to us hauling our 50 lb suitcases up and down stairs unnecessarily, but we made it in the end.
First impressions of Auckland: wet and windy, though this was due to Cyclone Luci which passed through during the last two days. The day after we arrived, we walked around downtown Auckland, checking out hostels, and the weather (as we were warned) was truly all four seasons: pouring with rain one minute, sunny and warm the next, overcast and windy after that. The city center is fairly small but the suburbs extend out quite a ways. Unfortunately, the buses to these suburbs (where we stayed) were infrequent, so we ended up walking for 45 minutes back to our hotel. We blamed the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade which we happened to see slowly moving through downtown.
Who knew there was so much Irish pride here, halfway around the world?