Park to Park – Across Auckland to Ambury Park

Monday was moving-on morning. Wyn and I had a last walk along the beach at Wenderholm. It was a lovely morning and low tide and we walked around the headland towards Waiwera – lots of interesting shaped rocks. Then it was time to pack up and get going. We headed separately back through Orewa and onto the motorway south. We turned off to visit Wyn’s uncle Tom at Milford. It’s always good to catch up with him – he has a great store of old stories/memories. Then it was back on the motorway and over the bridge and off again at the Tank Farm. We thought we’d find some parking there but it was obviously popular with Auckland workers after free parks through the day. Eventually we found somewhere to park. It was Pay-and-Display and only 50 cents per hour – not bad for Auckland or anywhere else for that matter. We were opposite a yacht spar business and watched amazed as guys emerged from their yard with a long yacht mast. There was someone every 3 metres or so holding it on their shoulder, and it just kept coming. There were dozens of guts and they just walked out into the street and then off down the street towards the Viaduct Basin. It was as long mast.

We followed on foot as well, walking the kilometre or so to the end of Queen Street. It was interesting to see the developments around their waterfront. It looks like it’ll extend towards the Tank Farm as well. We had fun being tourists – looking like tourists and snapping photos of everything and anything. It was fun looking at the luxury yachts parked in the marinas. We gawked at the Britomart Transport Palace and fed our faces in a sunny spot with reasonable priced baking from a McDonalds McBakery sort of place. We hoped on a free bus for a quick whip around the central city area and then headed back towards the Tank Farm (the former oil storage port area between the Viaduct Basin and the marina before the bridge).

We thought we were leaving it a bit late heading back into the traffic at 4pm, aiming for Ambury Park over beside the Manukau Harbour near Mangere. It took a while getting back onto the motorway but went well from there. We took the airport route as far as Mangere Bridge. The city-airport route in Auckland is such a joke. Most tourists must assume they’re on the wrong road or are being taken a back way by taxis. We hadn’t been sure what Ambury Park would be like – given that it is in the middle of the city. So we were surprised and happy to find it a lovely picturesque farm park where the most noise comes from the sheep and the pukekos. It is another jewel in the crown of the Auckland Regional Council. The staff were very friendly and helpful and we were soon parked up in the middle of a paddock with views out over the Manukau Harbour and sheep for neighbours. Andrew ended up with lots of lamb photos and we all ended up nicely relaxed.

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