This morning we drove across the Harbour Bridge (which is spookily similar to Sydney Harbour Bridge) to the marine village of Devonport, a suburb of Auckland. Devonport is a very pretty place with good views across the harbour towards the city. The historic seaside village is also served by a twice hourly catamaran ferry which takes just twelve minutes direct from Harbourside in the heart of Auckland. There are many Victorian villas, sandy beaches, stylish shops and charming cafes and restaurants.
Towering above Devonport are the two ancient volcanic cones of Mount Victoria and North Head, which afford great views across the harbour and surrounding areas. We climbed up Mt Victoria, at the top of which is the Disappearing Gun, which was designed to counteract the threat of Russian expansion in the Pacific in the 1800s.
Later we recrossed the Harbour Bridge to Mount Eden, the name of a cinder cone and surrounding suburb, situated five kilometres south of Auckland city centre. The mountain is the highest natural point in the Auckland Isthmus. The English name honours George Eden, 1st Earl of Auckland.
Eden Park, clearly visible from the summit has been home to Auckland Cricket since 1910, and also hosts international test and one-day cricket matches. The ground has also been the home of the Auckland Rugby Union since 1925, and will be the centrepiece of the Rugby World Cup 2011 being the home ground of the mighty All Blacks!