Welcome to the coolest little capital in the world, Wellington. Whether your thing is food, fashion, art, culture, sport or nature, Wellington has it all.
It might not be the biggest city in NZ, but it certainly packs a lot in. With more bars and cafes per capita than New York, you won’t be stuck for places to get your fill. You’ll need them because there’s plenty to explore and work up an appetite.
First up: Culture. Te Papa is the city’s famous museum where the Treaty of Waitangi is permanently on display, along with other exhibits like the New Zealand’s National Art Collection. It’s not the only place to get a slice of the Kiwi heritage though. There’s also the Museum of Wellington, voted one of the top 50 museums in the world, the guided tours of parliament that get you inside the quirky Beehive and Old St Paul’s, the impressive timber church.
If the National Art collection has got you feeling creative, you don’t need to go far to find a gallery. The City Gallery in Civic Square is Wellington’s biggest, featuring international collections alongside local and Maori art. For something theatre-based, there’s also Downstage Theatre, Circa Theatre and the stunning Opera House. And if you’re coming in September, Wellington comes alive with crazy costumes and colours at the Annual World of Wearable Arts Award Show.
Overlooking the Cook Straight at the Southern tip of the North Island, Wellington is the gateway to the South Island. Head to Mount Victoria for beautiful views of the city and harbour, it’s particularly beautiful in the morning when the sun rises from behind the Makara Peak in the east. For more great views, hop in the Wellington cable car up to the Botanic Gardens and the Planetarium for great views of the city and the Hutt Valley across the harbour. The Botanic Gardens are full of colour, with exotic forests and natural bush; they’re worth exploring on a sunny Wellington day. A short bus journey from the gardens is Zealandia, the Karori Sanctuary Experience, a community driven conservation project. Here you’ll find some of New Zealand’s unique wildlife, including the Kiwi, Tuatara and the Takahē. For a Well-good time, Wellington is the place to be. Take your pick of hotels below to make the most of this exciting city.
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