Welcome to New Zealand, Nau mai haere ki Aotearoa.

Auckland’s sub-tropical climate, sparkling blue waters and lush green hills is a natural paradise. Yet it’s also one of the great cities of the Pacific and a bustling centre of events, arts and culture.

Auckland is full of surprises. It boasts three magnificent natural harbours and the vantage points of 50 volcanic cones. Its attractions were such that Māori called this land Tāmaki Makau Rau – ‘the maiden with a hundred lovers’

Conference Venue

The STARS Conference 2018 is being held at the SKYCITY Auckland Convention Centre. It is ideally situated in the heart of the Auckland CBD.

Conference accommodation rates can be found here.

Explore Auckland and its surrounds

Get out on the water with a cruise on a classic yacht or launch. You can experience the thrill of sailing on a former America’s Cup racing yacht or hire a kayak to meet the local marine mammals on an evening paddle to Rangitoto Island.

If you prefer to keep your feet on dry land, a drive out to the wild, west coast is the ideal choice. Discover the area’s pristine native bush, coastal rainforest and rugged black sand beaches on foot or on the back of a 4WD quad bike. Other options include surfing or exploring the vast gannet colony at Muriwai Beach.

For a touch of history and stunning views, visit Devonport, a 12-minute ferry ride across the harbour. Wander around the art galleries, book shops and cafés of old Devonport or take a walk or Segway tour to the top of Mt Victoria and North Head. The volcanic cones offer stunning 360-degree views from the city to the Hauraki Gulf islands.

A visit to Auckland wouldn’t be complete without some shopping. Indulge yourself at top designer stores with international and local labels in Newmarket or discover the funky fashion stores and chic cafés and bars in Auckland’s Britomart precinct and High Street.

How to spend 24 hours in Auckland.


One hour north of Auckland you’ll find an area devoted to producing great food and wine. With its riverside walkway, outdoor cafés and charming shops, Matakana is a great destination to explore.

Drop into one of the many vineyards around the area for an outstanding lunch or, if it’s a Saturday, visit the Matakana Village Farmer’s Market. If it’s wildlife you’re after, explore the wonders that lie below the water’s surface at Goat Island Marine Reserve.

Waiheke Island

Depart Auckland city on a high-speed ferry and Waiheke Island is only 35 minutes away.
Waiheke Island is a picturesque blend of farmland, forest, beaches, vineyards and olive groves. Sample award-winning wines in the beautiful vineyards, taste delicious local produce, visit the local artisans’ studios or simply relax on a golden sand beach.

Lunch at one of the many vineyards on the island is a must-do; take in the panoramic sea views at Mudbrick, Te Whau and Cable Bay or enjoy a glass of legendary Larose at Stonyridge.

You can also visit aucklandnz.com for more information about holidays and what to experience in Auckland.

Sailing Experiences with Explore Group, Viaduct Harbour

Experience Auckland, the ‘City of Sails’ from a unique perspective with a must-do sailing experience from Explore Group. With various options available, you can either get involved as crew on board a genuine America’s Cup race yacht or sit back and relax on a harbour cruise, taking in the sights of Auckland and the sparkling waters of the Waitemata Harbour.

No experience required, suitable for all abilities/ages – sailings depart from the Viaduct in central Auckland and can be booked in person at our booking kiosk at the Viaduct or online.

Auckland Domain

A massive park in the suburb of Grafton, Auckland Domain contains more than 75 hectares of land within the crater of the Pukekawa volcano.Attractions in the park include the Auckland War Memorial Museum, cricket grounds and Wintergardens.

Auckland Harbour Bridge Climb and Bungy Jumping

Here’s your chance to be Spiderman as you climb aboard Auckland’s Harbour Bridge. In just 90 minutes you’ll traverse the walkways accompanied by a local guide, while Auckland’s incredible sights are showcased below you. Don’t miss this exhilarating experience suitable for all fitness levels. It’s the ultimate high!

The Sky Tower

SKYCITY Auckland is home to the iconic 328-metre Sky Tower. View the city from the observation deck or enjoy dining in one of the three restaurants and cafés. If adventure is what you are looking for, check out the Sky Walk or Sky Jump for the ultimate rush!


Getting to Auckland


There are flights to New Zealand from all over the world. New Zealand is just three hours from Brisbane, Sydney or Melbourne, an easy 12-hour overnight flight from Los Angeles, and 25 hours from Europe, with the opportunity to enjoy a stopover in Hawai’i, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Dubai or Singapore.

Auckland’s international and domestic airports are located in Manukau City, around a 45-minute drive from downtown Auckland. There are a range of direct flights and low-cost fares available so we encourage you to explore all the options.


Shuttles & Taxis

The main shuttle companies running from the airport to the city are SkyBus or Super Shuttle. Taxi and shuttle ranks are located outside the arrivals area (door 8) at the international terminal and outside the Jetstar forecourt at the domestic terminal. You can pre-book online or just turn up at the terminal ranks – taxis and shuttles are always available. Click here for further information.

Car Rental

A range of car rental services is available at Auckland Airport. Please refer to the Auckland Airport website for further information.


Auckland enjoys a warm coastal climate and is one of the sunniest spots in the country. It also has a high rainfall, which ensures the lushness of its rainforests, with an annual rainfall of 1240mm. When visiting Auckland, it is a good idea to pack a rainproof jacket as well as sun protection due to New Zealand’s high UV rating. The average daily temperature during the month of July is xxxxx


Delegates are strongly advised to secure appropriate travel and health insurance. Delegate registration fees do not provide any insurance coverage. The Organising Committee and the Meeting Office accept no responsibility for any loss in this regard.


The official language of the Meeting is English.


Visitors from eligible countries can travel to New Zealand without applying for a visa first. Delegates from all other countries must apply for a visitor visa. For information about visa applications and to check if you are required to apply for a visa to enter New Zealand, please visit the New Zealand Immigration website.

Please note that visa applications must be submitted at least three weeks before the date of travel.


Every effort is made to ensure people with special needs are catered for. If require any specific assistance, please include a notation with your registration form to enable us to make your stay in Auckland a pleasant and comfortable experience.