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WellingtonNew Zealand

Visit the "coolest little capital in the world" for arts, culture and film industry glamour, not to mention stunning natural beauty.

As the capital of New Zealand, Wellington is the most southerly capital city on the planet. According to Māori legend, Wellington Harbour was first discovered by Kupe in A.D. 925. 1840 saw the arrival of the Europeans, who named the city after the Duke of Wellington, and it finally became the country's capital in 1865.

Previously overlooked in favour of the more popular Auckland, a lot has changed here in terms of tourism in the last few years, with Wellington now described by some as the "coolest little capital in the world". Its hip reputation is due in large part to its thriving cultural scene, its nightlife and, in particular, one of the most successful film industries outside Tinseltown. Plenty of tourists come here to see famous film scenes come to life, such as the stunning landscapes of the Lord of the Rings trilogy or the heightened surroundings of blockbuster Avatar. The city's wealth of high-tech sound stages, special effects gurus and studios have led to the area sometimes being dubbed "Wellywood".

A good place to start getting to grips with the city is along the waterfront. This area is most notably home to the national museum Te Papa. Not far is the Museum of Wellington City and Sea, which tracks the development and maritime heritage of the New Zealand capital.

One of the most enduring tourist attractions in the city is the Wellington Cable Car. This 8-minute journey will whip you up the hill to Wellington Botanic Garden and the Kelburn lookout point. You can then hop on a shuttle from here to Zealandia, a conservation project which aims to return part of the countryside to its original state before human settlement. To see the famous unspoilt landscape of Wellington on a grander scale, head into the hills for some dramatic tramping trails, or make the trip to the city's nearest beach, Oriental Bay Beach.

As night falls, the streets of Wellington come to life with great bars, cafés, restaurants and entertainment. Despite its many great facilities, Wellington is really quite a small city. One of the many advantages of this is that most things are within easy walking distance, making the visitor's life as easy and laidback as possible.

Wellington Travel Guide Video

Top hotels in Wellington

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
DoubleTree by Hilton Wellington
DoubleTree by Hilton Wellington
4.5 out of 5
Corner of Lambton Quay and Grey Street, 28 Grey Street, Wellington, NZ
Free Cancellation
The price is NZ$168 per night

This family-friendly Wellington hotel is located in the shopping district, just steps away from Lambton Quay and Wellington Central Business District. Te Papa ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (468 reviews)

"We enjoyed our overnight stay here. Building has been beautifully restored. Staff were friendly and helpful. Would definitely stay again."…"

Reviewed on 18 May 2020

DoubleTree by Hilton Wellington
Oaks Wellington Hotel
Oaks Wellington Hotel
4.5 out of 5
89 Courtenay Place, Te Aro, Wellington, Wellington
The price is NZ$135 per night

Located in Te Aro, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Courtenay Place, Cuba Street Mall and Te Papa (Museum of New Zealand). Michael Fowler ...

4.3/5Excellent! (159 reviews)

"Very good location. Our room view wasn’t the one in the photos, and the view was the reason we payed extra for that room thinking we where going to be looking down onto Courtney Place"…"

Reviewed on 24 May 2020

Oaks Wellington Hotel
QT Wellington
QT Wellington
5 out of 5
90 Cable Street, Wellington
The price is NZ$186 per night

This family-friendly Wellington hotel is located in the entertainment district, steps away from Waitangi Park, Wellington Central Business District and Wellington ...

4.5/5Wonderful! (1,903 reviews)

"If you enjoy modern art and decor this is the type of hotel that might pique your interest"…"

Reviewed on 18 Mar. 2020

QT Wellington

Popular places to visit in Wellington

Te Papa
Image for Te Papa

Te Papa

4.5/5(1,003 reviews)

Engage your senses with a trip to this New Zealand museum, home to the national art collection and interactive exhibits on everything from nature to Māori legend.

Courtenay Place
Image for Courtenay Place

Courtenay Place

4/5(980 reviews)

Shop, wine and dine in this culinary hot spot on one of Wellington's most fashionable streets.

The Weta Cave
Image for The Weta Cave

The Weta Cave

4.5/5(187 reviews)

Learn the special effects secrets behind films such as The Lord of the Rings and Avatar with a tour through this Academy Award-winning studio.

Top activities in Wellington

Wellington City Sights & Coastline Tour
Image for Wellington City Sights & Coastline Tour

Wellington City Sights & Coastline Tour

90% of travellers recommend
NZ$59
Per adult
Martinborough Winery Tour
Image for Martinborough Winery Tour

Martinborough Winery Tour

90% of travellers recommend
NZ$140
Per adult
Wellington Cruise Excursion - Half Day City Tour
Image for Wellington Cruise Excursion - Half Day City Tour

Wellington Cruise Excursion - Half Day City Tour

NZ$75
Per adult
Weta Cave Workshop Tour: There & Back Again
Image for Weta Cave Workshop Tour: There & Back Again

Weta Cave Workshop Tour: There & Back Again

92% of travellers recommend
NZ$68
Per adult
Guided Wellington Electric Bike Tour
Image for Guided Wellington Electric Bike Tour

Guided Wellington Electric Bike Tour

100% of travellers recommend
NZ$125
Per adult
From Cave to Coast Wellington Highlights Tour
Image for From Cave to Coast Wellington Highlights Tour

From Cave to Coast Wellington Highlights Tour

100% of travellers recommend
NZ$170
Per adult

Reviews of Wellington

4.5

Top Destination

5 - Excellent
1609
5 - Excellent 53.01482701812191%
4 - Good
1250
4 - Good 41.18616144975288%
3 - Okay
159
3 - Okay 5.238879736408567%
2 - Disappointing
12
2 - Disappointing 0.3953871499176277%
1 - Terrible
5
1 - Terrible 0.16474464579901152%

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

31 May 2020

Cool place to visit. Good food and good Shopping

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

31 May 2020

was a very fun weekend away

3/5 - Okay

Disgusted

31 May 2020

Its pretty but a bit boring

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

27 May 2020

I loved it. Wellington is a bubbling, thriving city with an awesome busy yet relaxed atmosphere.

5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

21 May 2020

Wellington was on lock-down owing to Covid-19 virus. So lots of sights and shops were not open.

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

11 May 2020

Bella Vista - top facilities with perfect new owners. Adjacent to site seeing areas in Wellington.

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