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Wellington frequently asked questions about travel, holidays and getting around

  • 4 minutes

WELLINGTON FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT GOING THERE

WHAT IS WELLINGTON BEST KNOWN FOR?

Wellington is well known for its foodie scene, Cuba Street markets, award-winning fine dining & superb coffee on every corner of the city

Mt Victoria Lookout, Wellington, New Zealand @Stuff
Mt Victoria Lookout, Wellington @Stuff

What can I do in a day in Wellington?

In a day in Wellington you will pack in plenty, compact, easily accessible key attractions are centred around Lambton Quay, the harbour walk with the notable exception of the amazing Weta Workshop which is in Miramar.

  • Visit Mt Victoria Lookout and drop down to Oriental Parade for Wellington shot of coffee, check out the Oriental Parade beach
  • Walk the walk from Wellington promenade past TE PAPA NATIONAL MUSEUM
  • Think about a quick exploration of Cuba Street with lunch in mind
  • Saunter along Lambton Quay, the magic shopping mile
  • Check out historic clock and BNZ building
  • Pop into the Wellington Museum and up to the attic for a ghostly time
  • Join a Beehive Parliament tour mid afternoon
  • Catch the Wellington Cable Car and absorb the views of Wellington from Kelburn Lookout
  • Wander back to the city through the Wellington Botanic Gardens in time to catch the bus shuttle to the airport promising to return soon
Wellington Museum heritage building, Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington Museum heritage building
TIP

Check out Wellington laneways, street art and street food – Best Bits for fascinating places to observe as you make your way across town.

If you are lucky and it’s Friday, make sure to plan enough time for Friday evening Cuba Street market with its international eats, pop up stalls, entertainment and all around good time.

Lambton Quay public sculptures, Wellington, New Zealand
Lambton Quay

Where can I walk in Wellington?

You can walk in Wellington to most key attractions. Remember to plan your route so as you are largely walking downhill rather than trudging up Wellington’s steep streets. Check out Wellington Walks for holiday walking ideas.

Is Wellington a beautiful city?

The patchwork quilt of brightly painted wooden houses stacked on the hills is attractive. The combination with the harbour, the waterfront architecture and sense of fresh air (it is known as the windy city) is memorable.  And, yes Wellington has a beautiful personality.

The Beehive, New Zealand's Parliament building, at twilight, Wellington, New Zealand
The Beehive, New Zealand's Parliament building
Wellington Harbour with Matiu Island in background, New Zealand
Wellington Harbour with Matiu Island in background

Is Wellington New Zealand worth visiting?

Wellington is a personality plus for a capital city with a sophisticated food scene, glorious architecture, galleries and museums, outdoors in the backyard and a boutique wine district just around a corner or two.

NOTE

If you are visiting New Zealand for the first time with your bucket list from the top of the country, Waitangi Treaty Grounds to Milford Sound (the bottom of the South Island) and have only 12 – 14 days you might not have enough time.  Plan to return and take the slow lane travel journey and enjoy all Wellington has to offer.

Is Wellington or Auckland, NZ a better place to visit?

  • Adventure then Auckland is better to visit for those wanting to jump off bridges, skydive or swim with penguins.
  • Culture & heritage,Wellington is better to visit. The showpiece Te Papa National Museum has the edge (it helps being the capital city).
  • Nature and outdoors Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf and proximity to the Waikato premier attractions, Sanctuary Mountain and Waitomo leads the race against Wellington’s undeniable charms.
The Sky Tower, Auckland, New Zealand @Arrivalguides
The Sky Tower, Auckland @Arrivalguides
Te Papa National Museum of New Zealand @Ulrich Lange Bochum Germany
Te Papa National Museum of New Zealand @Ulrich Lange Bochum Germany

What is Wellington, NZ known for?

Wellington, NZ is undeniably a cultural capital for Aotearoa NZ. Museums galore from the world class Te Papa National Museum to Wellington Museum and the rest. Galleries, exhibitions, the place where funky Wearable Arts is showcased and creative souls are found down cheerfully painted laneways.

Why do tourists go to Wellington, NZ?

Historic, cultural attractions, + great foodie scene. Museums and galleries and shows from Wearable Arts to rock concerts visit the cultural capital of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Cable Car Museum, Wellington, New Zealand
Cable Car Museum, Wellington
QT Wellington Museum Art Hotel @ TripAdvisor
QT Wellington Museum Art Hotel @ TripAdvisor

How long should I stay in Wellington, NZ?

Three to four days. While the city is compact there are interesting attractions meriting a day trip from Matiu Somes Island, Kapiti Island Nature Sanctuary and Martinborough wine trail.

FOR ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS IN WELLINGTON CHECK OUT

What is the best way to get around Wellington, NZ?

Wellington city centre attractions the best way to get around is walking. The city centre is relatively flat (the exception being the Wellington Botanic Gardens) and within a radius of 5 km.

Wellington Central Waterfront, New Zealand @Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington Central Waterfront @Wellington, New Zealand
TIP

Wellington Botanic Gardens are easy to visit if you walk downhill. Catch the iconic Wellington Cable Car. Click instagram moments at Kelburn Lookout and enjoy a stroll through the gardens back to the city centre.

Wellington cable car ride, The most famous landmark in Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington cable car ride

Is Wellington, NZ’s public transport system easy to use?

Yes, it is a breeze to get around Wellington on either the public buses or train network. From the Wellington travel guide check out the following:

How can I get from the airport to Wellington city centre?

Wellington Airport is well sign posted for city shuttles, Lower Hutt shuttles and elsewhere. There is a taxi rank and Airport Express bus (public transport). Airport Express (AX) service which travels between the Wellington Airport and Wellington Railway Station.

What is the Airport Express (AX)?

The service is provided by Metlink and operated by our partner Mana Newlands Coaches by Transdev.

Paying for your journey

Pay on board with a Snapper card, cash, or contactless debit or credit card.

What is the best way to get around Wellington?

You really do not want to walk or drive around Wellington THEN use Wellington’s guided hop on and hop off bus. Hop on Hop off | Guided Tours Wellington. Tours depart and finish from the city i-SITE Visitor Centre bus stop at 145 Wakefield St opposite the Amora Hotel, starting at 9.30am, with the last Tour leaving at 2.30pm.

Hop on Hop off bus, Wellington, New Zealand @newzealand
Hop on Hop off bus @newzealand
View of Courtenay Place, Wellington, New Zealand @NZFC
View of Courtenay Place, Wellington @NZFC

Is it easy to drive around Wellington in my own car?

Wellington is notorious for its shortage of public parking. It is recommended public transport, uber and taxis are used as well as walking to nearby attractions. For travel to the Hutt Valley (Petone and beyond) and elsewhere ensure you are not departing or arriving in peak hour traffic. It is very likely if you are staying in the centre of town the accommodation provider will charge a hefty fee for parking your vehicle.

Guided walking tours of Wellington Walk Wellington are available.  Recommended for first time visitors to Wellington for insider tips and latest pop store openings.

Public transport – buses

Wellington public bus service is excellent check Metlink – Greater Wellington’s Public Transport Network for details.

Wellington is home to an excellent regional public rail system with its heart being the historic Railway Station. Check the link for train timetables and enjoy the Railway Station grandeur.  Just be careful of Wellington government commuters in the workday rush hour.  They are focused on getting to work on time.

Wellington, New Zealand @Andrew Surgenor
@Andrew Surgenor
Cuba Street after business hours, Te Aro, Wellington, New Zealand
Cuba Street after business hours, Te Aro, Wellington

Wellington, NZ is known as the windy city, is the weather bad in Wellington?

Wellington Central Weather Forecast and Observations

The weather can be horrible. Check out the weather forecast for Wellington and do not let that stop you.  All those museums are indoors.The weather, it is not called Windy Wellington for nothing. Invest in a Blunt umbrella and think of the weather as invigorating, embracing as it whips your hair into a messy, frizzy mess, Wellington mode.  Layers, especially a light waterproof jacket thigh length is a must do.

Where can I find out more about what to do in Wellington?

The best place to find out about Wellington attractions is BEST BITS TRAVEL GUIDE FOR WELLINGTON.

 

BEST BITS TRAVEL GUIDE

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