Cloud overhead and sparse light showers will greet Aucklanders most mornings this week before the weather clears just in time for the long weekend.

MetService meteorologist Andrew James said a ridge of high pressure had brought settled weather to much of the country today.

In Auckland light showers would persist in the morning with brisk southwesterlies.

"There will be some isolated light showers this morning, probably more around the west coast because of the southwest flow over the city," James said.

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Most people would probably manage to stay dry, he said.

"It is much the same this afternoon - a few showers out around the west... most people won't even see one," James said.

"Tomorrow will be better than today."

The weather was expected to clear in Auckland on Friday with a high of 20C.

Saturday and Sunday were both expected to bring warm temperatures of 20C and 21C.

Strong wind was expected this morning in the Hauraki Gulf and from Bream Head to Cape Colville.

Meanwhile the westerly gales that persisted overnight in the far south of the South Island continued through to the early morning in Southland, Clutha and Stewart Island.

However, the strong wind watch ended at 5am.

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Main centre forecasts today
Whangārei: Cloudy periods. Southwest breezes. High 17C, Low 11C

Auckland: Often cloudy. Isolated light showers developing in the morning, mainly in the west. Brisk southwesterlies. High 16C, 12C

Hamilton: Cloudy periods. Southwesterlies. High 16C, 8C.

Tauranga: Fine, some morning cloud. Brisk westerlies. High 18C, 10C.

Wellington: Cloudy periods. Northerlies dying out for a time in the morning and afternoon. High 17C, 11C.

Christchurch: Cloudy with some morning light rain possible. Fine spells from evening. Westerly breezes. High 22C, 9C.

Dunedin: Often cloudy with a few spots of rain morning and night, but some afternoon fine breaks. Southwesterlies, strong at first. High 20C, 9C.

Source: MetService