Hundreds of years ago, Karangahape Rd was an important thoroughfare, a ridge on Te Ao Karangahape track that led journeymakers to the Manukau harbour. While all around sprouted streets named after things British, this East-West pathway retained its Maori name, now commonly shortened to K’Rd. Over centuries K’Rd remained a vital pathway and hive of activity, including of the red-light sort, which the area was famous for and which probably helped save it from too-fast development: the district retains architectural character rare in Auckland. More recently, with a flurry of new restaurant and bar openings, the fun here kicks off well before the midnight hour and carries on through. Proving that small-scale and operators can make a big splash, K’Rd’s eclectic offering makes it Auckland’s hottest strip.