1. Running along the spectacular coastline, preferably on days that you get lashed with rain. Depending on the tide you can alternate between the beach routes or cliff top paths – these are more challenging given their vigorous undulation at times. On finer days I often marvel at how clear the water is and the great views of the harbour and islands. I don’t think there are many places in the world where you can run in such scenic surroundings, especially being so close to a populated area.
2. Browns Bay Beach. Although this can be one of the busier North Shore beaches, I enjoy going there because it is a great beach for the family. The kids can either entertain themselves on the playground, skate park or nearby shops, and there’s coffee, ice-cream or ale just across the road. A few weeks ago I went for a swim with my youngest son (it happened to be a fine weekend) and I couldn’t get over the clarity of the water. You could look down and clearly see your feet and 10 metres ahead. There are plenty of other great beaches nearby to choose from, but the versatility of Browns Bay is hard to beat.
3. The Millennium gym. Very handy for a lunch time work out if I can fit it in, super friendly staff and fantastic facilities, what more could you ask for?
4. Campbells Bay Tennis Club. Nestled in Centennial Park, this would have to be one of the most idyllic tennis clubs in New Zealand. Surrounded by Pohutukawa trees with wood pigeons singing and a great view out to sea, you sometimes feel like you’re in a different world. The clubhouse, which is nestled under the native trees, reminds me of a Swiss chalet. The members are very friendly and welcoming.
5. The Northern Busway. This is a fantastic piece of infrastructure that I find very handy when I have a meeting in the city - especially during rush hour. Some people on the other side of the bridge give me a hard time for taking the bus, which I find peculiar. As my work is only a five-minute walk from the Constellation Drive Park and Ride, it is a very efficient solution. One of the things that makes it such a great service is that during rush hour the buses arrive every two to three minutes, so you don’t need to worry about a timetable and for the most part the drivers are a friendly bunch.