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Destination: Wellington & Wairarapa Region

Wellington’s slogan ‘The coolest small capital’ reflects a place where size is unimportant. Who needs a million people (Wellington approx 215,000) when your promenade showcases an amazing national museum, Te Papa with a string of cafes, boutiques and galleries each with their harbour views.

Picture postcard views are a collage of brightly painted timber houses stacked on harbour hillsides. The rich tapestry of buildings, prominent architecture and quirky public installations reflects the heritage and place of Wellington in governance Aotearoa NZ. Wellington is a bucket list destination for art and culture buffs with a plethora of galleries, museums from a film studio, Weta workshop tours & Weta Cave to Nairn Street settler cottage or Wellington Museum. You are spoiled for choice with nearby Dowse Art Gallery and the temptations of Greytwon, Wairapara emerging artists. Town and country are part and parcel of the Wellington landscape with Zealandia a premier sanctuary a Wellington suburb and the outstanding native landscapes of Otari-Wilton’s Bush Reserve a short bus stop journey from central Wellington.

For an overview of Aotearoa New Zealand attractions, things to do and places to visit check out the definitive New Zealand travel guide.

TIP

Check out Amazing 12 New Zealand Attractions and pop them on your bucket list.

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Shopping fans are not disappointed with a compact walkable city packed with unique clothing designers, homeware specialists and foodie treats or a train ride to Petone, Lower Hutt day trip, travel guide, things to see: NZ Jane is a great day trip. Invest in a Blunt umbrella (Wellington inspired to withstand the odd gale or two), merino layers and ignore the weather as you watch the world go by in a harbourside cafe.

WAIRARAPA

Think of a Greytown day shopping trip, travel guide, what to do & see: Best Bits or a Weekend in Martinborough – Best Bits are wine trails and feasts in vineyard courtyards. The Wairarapa is home to the story of the backbone of the New Zealand economy, wool. The interactive Masterton museum with its authentic wool shed, the iconic shearer greeting visitors to town is part of the TOP-10 things to do in Wairarapa, trip guide, what to see: NZ Jane. There are small towns, character filled with quirky collections and plenty to see and do from Carterton, the town with more bookshops than bakeries or Featherston with its narrative of prisoner of war camps and a museum where the only object is a Fell locomotive.

The Wairarapa is the road through to art deco Napier and a journey through the heartland of Aotearoa New Zealand. It is a must-do journey for New Zealanders and a fascinating insight for overseas visitors. Be ready to be surprised and stay just a little bit longer.

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