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The incredible team at Paperboy asked me about my neighborhood. I'm always keen to promote South Auckland! xx

My Auckland: Reina Vaai

Lawyer, blogger and proud south Aucklander Reina Vaai roams her neighbourhoods in search of food, festivals and fresh air.

We have so many awesome Pacific-focused festivals in Auckland. This is me at the Otahuhu Food Festival. Definitely ate too many dumplings, churros and fried bread that day.



You haven’t had a south Auckland summer if you’ve never been to The Strawberry Farm! I’m lactose intolerant and their strawberry ice cream is definitely worth the pain, trust me. 



On Saturday mornings, I love the Otara Flea Market (left) on Newbury Street or the Mangere Market in Mangere town centre. You can buy almost anything: hot chips, Island food, electronic gadgets and clothes. You can even commission a live freestyle rap on a topic of your choice. All you need is about $20 in your pocket and you’ll be set. Be sure to bring cash as some stalls won’t accept Eftpos.


I rate the Auckland Botanic Gardens in Manurewa as the best place for a Sunday stroll. Beautiful flowers everywhere, meandering pathways, stunning views – what more could you want?



I love having breakfast at Cafe Miko, also at the gardens. As my partner blissfully says, “Breakfast without a hangover tastes so good.”



If you’re a morning person or if you just like to exercise, Mangere Bridge is the place for you. Cycleways and walkways wind in and out of the town centre. There’s an awesome strip of shops with loads of good cafes and bakeries – nothing like a quality pie to balance out your workout! My go-to filling is mince and cheese, obviously. If I had a week to live, I would like to spend it in a well-stocked dairy in south Auckland because I’d have everything I’d ever need: lollies, Bubble O’Bills, Doritos, Golden Circle cans and more.

I met this beautiful couple, Peter and Lui, at the Pasifika Festival. They have been happily married for many years and every year they pack their picnic basket and head out to the Pasifika Festival for the day. #TrueLove4Eva


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