Auckland is a happening place with the most vibrant theatre, arts and club scene in the country.
With a million residents to entertain and even more overseas visitors arriving each year, Auckland has a great diversity of nightlife. It reaches a climax on Friday and Saturday nights when the most popular venues are overflowing with revellers. Cafes, restaurants and bars often serve food and drink all through the night with music and dancing round the clock.
Some of the hottest venues can be found along the entertainment strip known as K’Rd at the top of Queen Street. Here clubs and bars offer heaps of variety in musical style with both live performance and DJ recordings at low admission charges ($5 or so). There are Irish pubs, Latin rhythm and jazz groups. Top Kiwi musos and overseas bands often perform gigs here. Ponsonby Road and Jervois Road continue on from K’Rd, extending the clubbing strip. Cafes and bars are packed in between the wooden villas and boutique shops. The Downtown area and the waterfront have live jazz in late-night trendy bars and there are regular performances of fully plugged bands.
Auckland’s theatre scene is concentrated on K’Rd, the Civic Theatre, Town Hall, Sky City Theatre and Aotea Centre. The Aotea Centre is a world class venue for theatre, classical music, opera and ballet. There are several performances each year by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra and the Auckland Philharmonic. On any night of the week the city can usually offer visitors a choice of entertainment including plays, comedy, dance troupe, opera or ballet. Cinemas are centred on Queen Street and suburban multicomplexes. In July each year an International Film Festival features a wide range of foreign movies.
To find out what’s happening in the city pick up a copy of the gig guides and events calendar from the Viaduct Basin Visitor Centre. Also check Auckland’s daily newspaper ‘The Herald’, for its entertainment pages and ‘What’s On’ Saturday supplements. Just choose a nightclub or show that’s all aglow and go with the flow.