Rangitoto Island is an icon. A huge beast of a volcano that towers over Auckland City and can be seen far and wide from various locations around the city.
I’ve taken photos of it from Bastion Point, North Head, Musick Point, Mission Bay, Takapuna Beach and various other places around Auckland but I had never set foot on the island so I made it my mission on my recent trip home to go.
Having lived in Auckland for 24 years I am not proud to admit that I had never visited the island.
Myself and 6 friends met up in Auckland’s viaduct to get our ferry over to Rangitoto Island on a gorgeous sunny Thursday in January. We booked our tickets with Fullers upon arrival and the cost of a return ferry from Auckland to Rangitoto was $30NZD.
The ferry over takes just 30 minutes as Rangitoto Island is located in the Hauraki Gulf, upon arrival you are very clearly out of the bustling city and thrust straight into nature. One of the things I love about Auckland is that even though you are in a big city you can very easily escape it.
Rangitoto Island is 5.5km wide and raises up to 260m, hence why you can see it from so many different locations around Auckland. Rangitoto last erupted some 500-600 years ago but was formed many years before that due to a series of eruptions.
There is a walking track that takes you from the ferry straight up to the summit of Rangitoto and it only takes one hour. The path isn’t paved but made up of gravel and volcanic rock so if you do go make sure you wear trainers!
The stroll up Rangitoto wasn’t a tough one, it was a very hot day though but there is shade along the way. We stopped at many different points along the walk to get a view from the top. The water glistening in the Hauraki Gulf, Auckland City becoming smaller and smaller the background.
Almost at the summit of Rangitoto was a viewing platform for the crater, as the island is covered completely with some of New Zealand’s flora and fauna it was very green and it looked more like a jungle than a volcano.
Just a few more steps from the crater look out was the summit of Rangitoto. The view from the top of Rangitoto Island was like one I’d never seen before. I am so used to seeing the Auckland landscape with Rangitoto in the distance somewhere but of course because I was standing at the top of Rangitoto I was seeing my hometown from a completely different persepctive.
The Hauraki Gulf was a warm blue colour and the nearby islands of Motatapu, Waiheke and Rotorua islands were all surrounding Rangitoto in the distance.
Auckland really is a beautiful city and being able to see it from the top of Rangitoto was just fantastic.
We stopped at the top for a snack and to snap some photos before retreating down a different path called the rim trail which gave us panoramic views over the Hauraki Gulf all the way around the island.
Rangitoto was a great day trip from Auckland City and just one of the great things I did during my time there that made me fall in love with my hometown all over again.
When we got to the bottom of the walking track we hung out and waited for the ferry back to Auckland City.
These were the parting images of the beautiful Rangitoto Island, it was a really memorable day spent with my dear friends in Auckland.
Within 30 minutes we were back to Auckland City and the view of Rangitoto was back to the one I was all too familiar with. A great day trip from Auckland City.
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