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Alert Level 3 means stay home and stay local

Go to your nearest beach or park, not your favourite one.

Published: 28 February 2021

Updated | Friday 5 March

With a little over one day to go at Alert Level 3, we're reminding Aucklanders to resist the temptation to break the rules and to keep their exercise local.

Auckland moves to Alert Level 2 at 6am on Sunday 7 March. 

Mayor Phil Goff says it’s still a good time to enjoy your local area.  

“With a few fine breaks in this late summer weather, it is tempting to get out and about,” he says. 

“Please resist the urge to jump into the car and head across town to the beach or park. Instead, enjoy your local parks, beaches, tracks, paths and walkways. Driving a short distance is ok too – just keep it local.  

“Remember that travel outside of the Auckland area is not permitted, unless you have an exemption from health authorities or the government.” 

The council has followed all government advice and closed facilities to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in our communities.

Parks, Arts, Community and Events Committee Chair Cr Alf Filipaina says there are lots of great ways to enjoy parks and open spaces without using the facilities.

“Playgrounds, skate and bike parks are closed; people must stay off outdoor exercise equipment, away from basketball hoops and off park benches.

“However, there are plenty of ways to enjoy your local park on foot or on your bike, while maintaining safe two metre distances from each other.

“These rules are in place for your health and wellbeing, it’s important to follow them,” says Cr Filipaina.      

We have closed all but around 200 public toilets – these remain open for workers that still need to carry out essential services.

Playgrounds are closed

Auckland Council has nearly 1000 playgrounds. Most of these will have signs in place relating to hygiene guidance for all alert levels and our more popular and high use playgrounds will be taped off. Our contractors will check tape and signage over the course of the week but from time to time we find that signs are removed or tape is affected by the elements.

“Regardless of the signs up at your local playground, the message for Alert Level 3 is that all playgrounds are closed and kids should stay off them until that status changes.

“These rules are for everyone’s safety,” says Cr Filipaina.

Exercise and recreation under Alert Level 3

You can do activities that are local and safe. Only exercise alone or with the people in your bubble. You need to keep a two metre distance from people who are not in your bubble, and you are strongly encouraged to wear a face covering.

The most important thing is to stay safe. Do low-risk activities, so you don’t need rescuing or medical care. Now is not the time to take up new activities, or expose yourself or your bubble to any risk. Use your common sense — stay local, stay safe. 

If you’re experienced you can do more activities. These include:

  • surfing — if you’re an experienced surfer, you can go to your local break. If you’re not experienced, don’t surf
  • tramping — is okay for day walks on easy trails. Remember to keep your distance from other people
  • mountain biking — if you're experienced and know the trail
  • swimming — in safe local spots. Do not take risks that might mean rescue services have to break their bubble to help you
  • horse riding — if you’re an experienced rider and it's low risk. Stay as close to home as you can.

Stay within 200 metres from shore if you are kayaking, canoeing, rowing, surfing, wind surfing or paddle boarding. 

What is not allowed:

  • Flying manned aircraft
  • Hunting in motorised vehicles
  • Water-based activities involving sailing boats, motorised boats or other craft like jet skis, and scuba diving
  • Team sports and training.

Auckland’s regional parks

Regional parks are open for exercise. Tramping and mountain biking is available for experienced users that know the trails. Visitor centres are closed. Some toilets and all facilities are closed. There is no vehicle access (walk-in is ok). Campground, baches and lodges are closed.

Find out more about council services here.

Read more: COVID-19

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