Things to Do in Wellington

Wellington Activities

Explore the finest Museum Of New Zealand, Marvel at the iconic building, The Beehive, Relish the alluring beauty of Wellington Botanic Garden, Portray the unique wildlife and nature at Zealandia and many more.

The myriad of fun-filled and exhilarating things to do in Wellington offer travellers an action packed holiday in the flamboyant capital city of New Zealand. Jam packed with some of the beautiful nature reserves and heritage buildings, the city lets travellers head out on exploration tours to learn more about the perfect blend of modernity and old world charm. With its infinite coastline, it entices nature lovers and peace seekers to try out various activities as well as relax with your loved ones.

Wondering about what to do in Wellington? You can think of exploring some of the finest museums and exhibition halls of the world, marvelling at the heritage sites and structures that date back to the colonial era, relishing the alluring natural beauty at some of the nature reserves and waterfront areas, and have wildlife encounters with some of the rare and endangered species at the sanctuaries.

If you are an adventure lover, then the city has got a lot to offer you. You can try out various adventurous things to do in Wellington such as boat tours, kayaking and canoeing, scuba diving and snorkeling, surfing and kitesurfing, fishing tours, and stand up paddleboarding to name a few. All the activities will be done under the supervision of experts and this will surely give you memories worth a lifetime.

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Wellington Cable Car

The Wellington Cable Car is one of the best Wellington attractions and offers a thrilling way to experience the city. It winds up and around the steep hills of the city, offering incredible views of the harbor and the cityscape. Its iconic red cars provide a unique experience, taking visitors up to the top of the Botanic Gardens and the Wellington Museum. Enjoy the ride and all the sights of the city from the top of the hill.

Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

Ranked amongst the top places to visit in Wellington is the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. It's a vibrant, interactive space with loads of free exhibitions and activities. Explore the stories of New Zealand's culture, art, environment, and history, with special collections and exhibitions. Experience a world-class museum, right here in Wellington.

Wellington Museum

The Wellington Museum is a vibrant cultural hub, showcasing the history and spirit of the city, and often ranks among the very best Wellington tourist attractions. It features an interactive exhibition, telling the stories of the region's settlement and development, as well as regular events and activities. The museum is home to a wide collection of artworks, artifacts, photographs, and archives related to the history of the Wellington museum.

The Beehive

When looking for things to see in Wellington, head to the iconic Beehive. It's the seat of New Zealand's government and a symbol of democracy. Its unique design is inspired by a beehive, featuring a series of stepped terraces. Inside, its corridors are steeped in history and full of artwork. The grounds of the Beehive offer beautiful views of the harbour and city skyline, making it one of the most popular tourist attractions in Wellington.

Wellington Botanic Garden

The Wellington Botanic Garden is a stunning oasis in the heart of the city, and is one of the most beautiful Wellington attractions. With lush green lawns, vibrant flower beds, and exotic plants, it's a paradise of beauty and tranquillity. The garden also features an iconic Victorian-style Lady Norwood Rose Garden and a spectacular, tree-lined cable car ride to the top of the hill, offering spectacular views over the city.

ZEALANDIA Ecosanctuary

ZEALANDIA is the world's first urban ecosanctuary and is said to be amongst the best places to visit in Wellington. Here, visitors can learn about and explore New Zealand's unique wildlife and ecology, surrounded by beautiful native bush, wetlands, and streams. Take a guided tour, spot kiwi, tuatara, takahe, and kaka in their natural habitat, or take a walk through the lush forest, enjoy the wildlife and take in the stunning views.

Weta Cave Workshop Tour

Discover the secrets of Weta Cave on an interactive guided tour when you are in search of the top Wellington tourist attractions. Take a peek behind the scenes of the world-renowned Weta Workshop and immerse yourself in the fascinating world of movie-making. Learn how the creative geniuses of Weta bring movie magic to the screen and experience the world of fantasy and imagination.

Katherine Mansfield House & Garden

Katherine Mansfield House & Garden is a haven of tranquillity, situated in the heart of the city. Set in a picturesque garden with a fascinating range of plants, this heritage building is a must-see for all lovers of literature and ranks among the most unique things to see in Wellington. Enjoy a guided tour of the house, explore the garden, and learn about the life and work of one of New Zealand's greatest authors.

City Gallery Wellington
Wellington Waterfront

If you are looking for the top places to visit in Wellington, then the Wellington Waterfront is where you should be. It is a vibrant hub of activity, with stunning views of the harbour and cityscape. Take a stroll along the waterfront, enjoy the cafes and restaurants, and take in the art and sculptures along the way. With its unique atmosphere, it's a must-visit destination when in Wellington.

Nairn Street Cottage

Nairn Street Cottage is amongst the most unique Wellington tourist attractions, in addition to being a remarkable piece of history in Wellington. With its rustic charm, the cottage is a reminder of Wellington's colonial past. Its weatherboard walls and timber floors create a warm, inviting atmosphere, while its white-trimmed windows, fireplace and large veranda give it a timeless appeal.

Princess Bay

Princess Bay is another one of the top Wellington attractions and offers a stunning view of the city harbour and the nearby hills. The bay is a popular spot for swimming, kayaking, and fishing. Walkers and cyclists enjoy the peaceful surroundings and beautiful views. There's plenty of seating, and the nearby park is ideal for picnics.

Matiu Island

Matiu Island is a magical oasis in Wellington’s harbor. Its tranquil and inviting atmosphere is perfect for exploring, with native bush, historical sites, and spectacular harbor views. You can take a guided tour, or wander around by yourself, spotting native birds and other wildlife. Enjoy a picnic or a BBQ, or simply relax and soak up the beauty of the island.

Wellington Zoo

The Wellington Zoo is a family-friendly place to explore and discover the wonderful world of wildlife. Located in the heart of Wellington, it is home to a wide variety of animals and plants, from giraffes and lions to monkeys and meerkats. You can learn about conservation, walk through the bush and enjoy the beautiful views of the cityscape.

Mount Victoria

Mount Victoria is a lush greenery-covered hill in the heart of Wellington. It's the perfect spot to take in a gorgeous sunset, stroll through the meandering pathways, or take a break and enjoy the stunning views of the city. On a clear day, you can even see the distant South Island! It's a tranquil oasis surrounded by the buzz of the city.

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Wellington Things To Do FAQs

What are the best things to do in Wellington?

1. Explore the finest Museum Of New Zealand: Museum of New Zealand is one of the finest exhibition halls that stands as a testimony to the natural forces and culture of the Maori People.

As the early settlement in Wellington was composed of Maori People and Europeans, there is a clear influence in every corner of the country. The museum is also known as Te Papa among the locals. You will pass through a number of wealth exhibits as well as an amazing collection of fine arts and treasures during your visit to this place.

Location: 55 Cable Street, Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Timings: 10 AM - 5 PM

2. Marvel at the iconic building, The Beehive: Beehive is one of the iconic buildings in New Zealand which is also the official site of the Parliament. This architectural marvel was constructed between 1964 to 1979 by the Britishers. The architecture of the building will let you witness the british touch in both exteriors as well as interiors.

Taking a free tour of this place, you will get to know more about the parliamentary history and spend time in its gardens which is just magical. The best part of this place is the statue of the prime minister of New Zealand in the middle of the rose gardens.

Location: Pipitea, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Timings: 9 AM - 5 PM

3. Relish the alluring beauty of Wellington Botanic Garden: Wellington botanical garden happens to be one of the famous botanical gardens in the world because of its charming beauty. Taking a tour of the garden with your loved ones will surely be one of the best activities to do in Wellington.

The garden is spread across the city and acquires an area close to almost 25 hectares giving shelter to some of the rare flora and fauna. Jam packed with walking trails through the gardens and flower beds, you will be able to witness a finest scenery of nature. Apart from all these, there is a planetarium inside the garden area where you will be able to learn more about the diverse flora which is just stunning and pleasing.

Location: 101 Glenmore Street, Kelburn, Wellington 6012, New Zealand

4. Portray the unique wildlife and nature at Zealandia: Zealandia happens to be a perfect place for you to marvel in Wellington, if at all you have got a big heart for the unique nature and wildlife. This place is known for showcasing some of the best reserves of the country. Spread over an area of 225 hectares with a location just about 20 minutes from the city centre, this place is just a paradise for nature lovers as well as bird lovers. You will be able to find a wide range of native as well as migratory birds at this place apart from a host of reptiles. During your visit to this place you will be able to explore a number of walking trails and museum tours to get insights about the natural history of the country.

Location: 53 waiapu road, karori

5. Stroll along the exhibits of City Gallery Wellington: City Gallery Wellington is a historic building in the city which happened to be an ancient library. City Gallery Wellinton hosts a number of temporary exhibitions all through the year. The exhibitions are mainly carried out to showcase the art and craft of the local artists.

When thinking about what to do in Wellington, you can come over to this place to find amazing sculptures, photographs, paintings, multimedia, and many more forms of art. The city gallery of Wellington gives utmost attention and importance to art and culture.

Location: Te Ng?kau Civic Square, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Timings: 11 AM - 5 PM

6. Taste the colonial flavours at Colonial Cottage Museum: The colonial cottage museum which was constructed in the year 1858 by Great William Wallis is one of the most sought after places in Wellington where you will be able to find an old surviving cottage.

With a stunning organic heritage garden area and some of the old traditional furnitures, you will get to recreate the ambience of a family life of the past era. Visiting this place with your loved ones, you will surely be able to taste the real charm of the colonial era of Wellington.

Location: 68 Nairn Street, Mount Cook, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Price: NZ$4–8
Timings: 12 pm – 4 pm

7. Watch the wonderful sight at Princess Bay: Princess bay is widely famous for offering the best view of nature over the water body. This is one of the best places in Wellington where you will be to capture brilliant views of the rising as well as setting sun.

The sandy Bay is located in the district of Houghton and has been catering to the needs of all kinds of traveller. You will also come across a small rock covered swimming pool area close to it where children can swim and have a great time with their loved ones.

Location: Wellington, New Zealand

8. Enjoy the secluded environment of Matiu Island: Located close to the Wellington harbor, this Island presents a secluded getaway for those who were looking to spend some time in peace with their loved ones. You can capture some of the brilliant views of the landscapes of wild New Zealand.

This natural reserve has been used for a wide range of activities to do in Wellington as of now like a shelter for the Maori People, Military and Interment Purpose and much more. This place is also famous among the adventure seekers who love to head out on hiking trails and love to spend time in overnight camps.

Location: Wellington Harbour

What are the best adventure things to do in Wellington?

Surfing: Surfing can be considered as one of the most sought after things to do in Wellington as it is a perfect place to match up with the ideal waves. You can try surfing at the famous Lyall Bay which is located some minutes away from the city centre.

Sailing: Sailing in Wellington is surely going to be a once in a lifetime experience as you will get a chance to explore the wonders of the city in the best possible way. You can team up with your family members and sail along the surreal coast to experience some of the most sought after adventurous things to do in Wellington in the azure blue waters.

Mountain Biking/ Quad Biking: Wellington calls for an exciting mountain biking and quad biking experience through its coastlines like the Kapiti Coast. Hire a bike and head out to the famous Makara Peak where you will get a whole new level of experience as well as witness some of the awe inspiring scenic view. Taking up these adventurous things to do in Wellington, you will be able to satisfy your adrenaline rush.

Kayaking: Kayaking is one of the most sought after adventure activities in Wellington. You can just hire a paddle board or a kayak to enjoy the experience of kayaking. If you are a hard core adventure enthusiast, then you can try out some of the adventurous things to do in Wellington like white water kayaking on rapidly flowing rivers.

What are the best romantic things to do in Wellington?

1. Watch a romantic play at the Circa Theatre: Located close to the waterfront, Circa theatre is one of the best places in Wellington for watching stage performances live. This place has been host to more than 300 different types of performances starting from Pantomime to musicals and from improv comedy and farce. Grab some snacks and watch a romantic play at this place with your beloved partner.

2. Explore the city on a bicycle along with your partner: Hiring a bike and heading out for a city exploration tour is surely one of the best romantic things that you can plan to do with your beloved partner. You will get a chance to explore the city at your own pace and enjoy scenic views of the peninsula while making some unforgettable memories.

3. Enjoy A Tipple At A Cocktail Bar: Wellington is widely famous for its bars and cafes all over the world. You can end up reaching any high end restaurant and bar located on the opposite side of the harbour to enjoy a margarita with stunning views of the harbour. The interior decor of the bars and restaurants will also keep you spellbound for sure.

4. Kayak Wellington Harbour At Night: Wellington harbour has got the best ever sight to behold once the sun sets down. You can take part in this activity from 5:30 PM in the evening and continue till 9:30 PM. Taking this guided tour, you will be able to sight the picturesque bays and coves as the sun sets. You will also have many wildlife encounters with dolphins, penguins, and whales.

What are the best things to do in Wellington in winter?

1. Explore Te Papa Museum: The Te Papa Museum in Wellington is a great destination for culture vultures as it has got an ever changing collection with a clear emphasis on the living of New Zealand. It is one of the best places where you can learn more about the country in the pleasant days of the winter vacation.

2. Eat the World at Capital Market: Capital Market is seriously one of the best places to visit in Wellington if you love shopping as well as eating. You will find great food at a very reasonable pricing in the winter season as it is the peak tourist season. Try out some authentic dishes of the nation as well as delight your taste buds with various dishes around the globe.

3. Shop at the Underground Market: Underground Market in Wellington happens to be one of the best to shop till you drop. You will get all sorts of articles at a cheaper price and if you are good at bargaining then it is very sure that you will grab the best deal. Situated close to the waterfront, you will be able to purchase plenty of goodies in a welcoming atmosphere of the winter season. Enjoy the pleasant climatic condition and relish some of the local snacks.

4. Tour the Parliament Buildings: If you are thinking about what to do in Wellington, then the best place to visit would be the age old parliament building. The parliament buildings of New Zealand happen to portray a perfect blend of various architectural styles. You can explore the interiors of the buildings to know more about the history as well as visit the exhibition hall to learn more about the important relics.

What are the best things to do in Wellington with family?

1. Camping at Kaitoke Park: Camping at Kaitoke Park is one of the most amazing things to do in Wellington with your family. You can come over to this place any time of the year to enjoy camping activities in the midst of alluring natural beauty. As it is located to the northeast of Upper Hutt, you will be able to witness some of native flora as well as enjoy various campgrounds, walks and swimming holes.

2. Relaxing at Nga Manu Nature Reserve: Nga Manu Nature Reserve which is spread over an area of 13 hectares and is home to the largest remnant of original lowland coastal swamp forest. When wondering about what to do in Wellington, you can come over to this place with your loved ones, you will be able to enjoy 700 different plant species, bush walks, wildlife ponds, lookout towers and a variety of rare animals like tuatara, kiwi, fantail, morepork, kea, tui, kaka, and woodpigeon.

3. Guided Tours of Kapiti Island Nature Reserve: Kapiti Island nature reserve can be considered as one of the most valuable natural reserves in Wellington where you will be able to spot a wide range of native and migratory birds like banded dotterels, variable oystercatchers, and Caspian terns. You will get a chance to enjoy the Kapiti Marine Charter to explore the reserve with your loved ones. You can also experience some fascinating scuba diving in crystal clear waters.

4. Marvel at Karori Sanctuary: Karori Sanctuary happens to be a beautiful place for family travellers to enjoy in the middle of a forest cover spread over an area of 225 hectares. This place is home to some of the exciting flora and fauna so you will be able to capture brilliant views along with some wildlife encounters.

What is the best time to visit Wellington?

The best time to visit Wellington would be from the month of March to the month of May when the city would be experiencing autumn shoulder season. The climatic condition would be warm and the city is not at all crowded making way for you to explore everything perfectly. You can try out loads of things to do in Wellington without being distrubed and watched.

What is famous in Wellington?

Wellington is very much famous for being the culinary capital of New Zealand. You will come across a lively atmosphere through its tucked away bars, award winning restaurants, quirky cafes and lots more. However the city is also popular for its age-old heritage structures and exhibition halls which display ancient relics.

Is Wellington worth visiting?

If you have got some queries about what to do in Wellington, then be sure that Wellington is definitely worth visiting as it is one of the most accessible cities in the world as you can cover a lot of things to do in Wellington walking down the streets.

It is home to some of the unique bars and award winning restaurants. It has got a good share of colonial heritage and not to forget you will be able to taste one of the best cups of coffee in the whole world here.

Is Wellington safe?

Wellington is definitely a safe city to visit with your loved ones for a holiday vacation. There is nothing to worry about during your stay in this place and while trying out various things to do in Wellington.

The administration is at all times on alert to tackle any kind of mishaps. The city is even safe for solo travellers who would wish to spend alone time till late hours.

How many days do you need in Wellington?

To cover all the important places of tourist interest in the city, you would at least need to spend 4 -5 days. During your stay, you can plan to try out some of the best things to do in Wellington like Te Papa Tongarewa Museum visit, Stroll through the famous Cuba street, take a cable car ride, tour in and around the New Zealand Parliament building, and the list continues.

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