Auckland Region is a local government region in New Zealand.
The region extends from the mouth of the Kaipara Harbour in the north across the southern stretches of the North Auckland Peninsula, past the Waitakere Ranges and the isthmus of Auckland to the Hunua Ranges and low-lying land south of the Manukau Harbour. The region ends within a few kilometres of the mouth of the Waikato River. It is bounded in the north by the Northland Region, and in the south by the Waikato Region.
In land area it is smaller than all the other regions and unitary authorities except Nelson. Its highest point is the summit of Little Barrier Island, at 720 metres.
A true-colour image of the Auckland region. Auckland is the brownish area just left of centre; the Hauraki Gulf is to the right of it. The scene was acquired by NASA's Terra satellite, on October 23, 2002.
The Pacific Ocean and Tasman Sea form the coastline around the Auckland region. The east coastis lapped by the waters of the Hauraki Gulf, an arm of the Pacific sheltered by a considerable number of small and large islands, notably Great Barrier Island in the northeast. An arm of the Hauraki, the Waitemata Harbour forms the main port of Auckland city.
To the west lie two large natural harbours, the Kaipara and the Manukau. Both of these have treacherous entrances and are little used by shipping. The Kaipara Harbour (of which the southern half is in the Auckland region) is one of the world's largest natural harbours, covering an area of 530 km2.
The region is blessed with many fine beaches, especially on the Tasman coast south of the Kaipara. These include Muriwai and Piha beaches.
Despite its small size, the region is by far the most populous in New Zealand, with a population of 1,316,700 (2004 estimate), about 32% of the country’s population.
The region encompasses the cities of the Auckland metropolitan area, smaller towns, rural areas, and the islands of the Hauraki Gulf. It borders the Northland Region to the north and the Waikato Region to the south.
For administrative purposes, the region is divided into four cities and three districts.
To the north of the Auckland urban area lies Rodney District, which includes the towns of Helensville and Wellsford.
To the south lies the district of Papakura, containing a town of the same name. Further south, the Auckland region covers the northern half of the Franklin District (the southern half is part of the Waikato region). Franklin contains the towns of Waiuku and Pukekohe.
Between the rural districts of Rodney and Franklin lies the dense urban development of the region's four main cities. The Auckland metropolitan area encircles the Waitemata Harbour and extends south from the Auckland Isthmus along the shores of the Manukau Harbour.
Auckland city takes up the bulk of the isthmus itself. Across the Waitemata from Auckland city lies North Shore city. To the west of Auckland city, nestling beneath the eastern foothills of the Waitakere Ranges, is Waitakere city. Finally, the city of Manukau extends to the south of Auckland, close to the eastern shore of the harbour which shares its name.
Three District Health Boards (DHBs) cover the greater Auckland region. They are Waitemata Health, Auckland District Health Board, and Counties Manukau Health.
Cities and Districts:
- Auckland Regional Council (http://www.arc.govt.nz/)