Royal tour 2014: Kate Middleton and Prince William to visit Auckland – profile of New Zealand town
As the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge continue their tour of Australia and New Zealand, here’s the five things you need to know about Auckland
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are set to jet off on their tour of Australia and New Zealand next month.
The third stop on their tour will be Auckland, the country’s largest and most populous city.
They’ll make a stop in Auckland on April 11th to meet serving Air Force personnel and their families.
Then they’ll race each other across Auckland harbour in Team New Zealand Americas Cup yachts before riding on an amphibious Sealegs craft.
Auckland was built on top of more than 50 volcanoes
Much of the city sits upon the Auckland volcanic field, a group of roughly 53 dormant volcanoes.
The type of volcanic activity in Auckland means each volcano has only ever erupted once.
The existing volcanoes are unlikely to erupt again, and the most recent eruption was about 600 years ago, but the field is likely to become active again with the next “hundreds to thousands of years” according to the local council.
It’s also known as the City of Sails
Auckland has more yachts per capita than any other city in the world.
Because the city was built on a narrow piece of land and stretches between two harbours, it’s essentially surrounded by water.
The harbours are flanked by hundreds of boats with sails flying.
The Sky Tower is the tallest free standing structure in the Southern Hemisphere
The colossal Sky Tower, located on the corner of Victoria and Federal Streets is 328m tall (including the top spire) making it the tallest free standing structure in the entire Southern Hemisphere.
The top of the tower houses New Zealand’s only revolving restaurant as well as an observation deck 222m above the ground.
And Beyonce jumped off it last year
The singer did a 192m bungee jump from the tower to the ground in October.
Don’t believe us? Watch this.
There’s no word about whether either the Duke or Duchess intends to follow in her footsteps.
People used to send messages between Aukland and Barrier Island by pigeon
Between 1894 and 1908, a pigeon post service ran between Barrier Island and Auckland. The service was set up after a ship, the SS Wairapapa was wrecked off the coast, killing 121 of the 235 people on board.
Without any telephone lines, the news of the tragedy took several days to get from the isolated island to the mainland.
Soon after, the pigeon-gram service was set up, with birds carrying letters – paid for with distinctive triangular stamps – from the island to Auckland.
The service became obsolete in 1908, when the first telegraph cable was laid between the island and the mainland.
Check out the best pics from the royal couple’s last tour to Asia and Indonesia below.