America's Cup 2021: Best spots around Auckland to watch World Series action

The America's Cup World Series and Christmas Race are about to kick off, with all four teams going head to head on the water off the coast of Auckland, beginning Thursday.

This will be the final regatta for Team New Zealand before challengers Luna Rossa, American Magic and Team UK compete in the Prada Cup for the chance to progress to the America's Cup next March.

During the regatta, the teams could compete on five different courses around Auckland's Waitematā Harbour and Hauraki Gulf. 

The five courses where the races will take place.
The five courses where the races will take place. Photo credit: America's Cup

Race management will decide the courses each day of racing, depending on weather conditions, wind intensity and direction, and tides.

To check out the action from vantage points around the city, here's where the courses are and the best places to watch:

Race Course A

The northernmost area for racing is Race Course A, off the coast of Castor Bay and Campbells Bay along Auckland's East Coast Bays.

The course can be sailed in nearly all wind directions, but is very exposed to the north east wind, which may make the area too windy for the high-performance sailing boats.

Where to watch: 

  • Milford Beach
  • Takapuna Beach
  • Kennedy Park
  • Possum's Lookout
  • George Gair Lookout
MIlford Beach on Auckland's North Shore.
MIlford Beach on Auckland's North Shore. Photo credit: GoogleMaps

Race Course B

Race course B is positioned in the Rangitoto Channel, with boats sailing along the coast from Devonport to Takapuna.

The course is expected to give prime views from land, particularly from Maungauika/North Head Historic Reserve.

Where to watch: 

  • Cheltenham Beach
  • Narrow Neck Beach
  • Maungauika North Head
  • George Gair Lookout
  • Takarunga/Mount Victoria
  • Maungauika/North Head Historic Reserve

Race Course C

Race Course C is the preferred course for racing to take place, due to the predominant southwest wind expected at the races' start times.

The course is sheltered between North Head on Auckland's North Shore and Bastion Point, which is located between Mission Bay and Orakei, east of Auckland city.

The boats will sail into the Waitematā Harbour and back out to Rangitoto Island.

Where to watch: 

  • Maungauika North Head
  • Orakei 
  • Bastion Point 
  • Takarunga/Mount Victoria
Maungauika North Head.
Maungauika North Head. Photo credit: GoogleMaps

Race Course D

Positioned in the Motukorea Channel, Course D will see the teams compete off Auckland's Eastern Bays.

The course is positioned so the boats will head out past Browns Island and back close to St Heliers Bay, perfect for westerly or easterly winds.

Where to watch: 

  • Achilles Point
  • Glover Park
  • St Helier's Beach

Race Course E

The final course - Race Course D - is located the furtherest south, off the coast of Beachlands and Maraetai.

Two potential areas are marked for the course, with one closer to Howick and the other closer to Waiheke Island.

The course is expected to suit windy conditions, including north-easterly and northerly winds.

Where to watch: 

  • Maraetai 
  • Musick Point
  • Eastern Beach Lookout
Musick Point.
Musick Point. Photo credit: Getty

Other Spots to Watch

For those who don't want to venture around Auckland searching for the best vantage point, all races can be watched live online on Youtube, Facebook and, and on free-to-air TV.

The international broadcast centre will recording the whole event, taking feeds from more than 30 cameras and stream them around the world. 

"You can push a button, you can go and watch it live basically anywhere in the world," Team NZ boss Grant Dalton has told Newshub.

"To me, that was always a major objective that's been achieved."  

Other spots to watch the races include the America's Cup Race Village at Hobson's Wharf on Auckland's waterfront, which is open free for the whole event.

And of course, if you want to get up close to the action, you can always head out onto the water in your own boat.

Join us on Thursday for live updates of America's Cup World Series racing