From urban life in New Zealand’s capital to the sound of wine being poured at a country estate, Wellington and Wairarapa indulge all the senses. Wellington steals hearts; set on a stunning harbour, with bush-clad hills all around and old wooden houses alongside sparkling glass towers, it’s utterly unique. Shopping, dining and culture abound. Head north to see an island sanctuary or east to sample the latest vintage in the pretty wine-growing region of Wairarapa.

Highlights

Te Papa Tongarewa No Wellington trip is complete without a visit to the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa – this innovative, world-leading museum is the most-visited museum in Australasia. Kapiti Island The sanctuary of Kapiti Island is accessible only with a special permit, but it is home to an incredible array of rare native birds. Wine tasting Just over the Rimutaka Hill from Wellington is the wine-growing region of Wairarapa. Martinborough Wine Village offers numerous wineries within walking distance of the village square. Don’t miss the local speciality – Pinot Noir. Culture and heritage Arguably New Zealand’s cultural capital, Wellington is home to a number of great galleries and museums, as well as the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Royal New Zealand Ballet, National Opera and three professional theatres. Wellywood Film director Peter Jackson has his studios in Wellington and film tours are a very popular half- or full-day option. Parliament Buildings The Parliament Buildings include the iconic Beehive, the neo-classical Parliament House and the Parliamentary Library. Wellington waterfront Wellington’s waterfront is a beautifully landscaped city hub offering harbour views and a great line-up of sights and activities. It’s perfect for walking, rollerblading and cycling.

Destinations

Otaki Popular shopping village on the Kapiti Coast. Paraparaumu Main centre of the Kapiti Coast, with easy access to beaches and forests. Upper Hutt Town at the base of the rugged Rimutaka Hills. Lower Hutt Satellite city across the harbour in the Hutt Valley. Porirua Major retail precinct and home of a renowned art gallery. Wellington Political and cultural capital of New Zealand. Greytown Features a Victorian main street with shops and cafés. Martinborough Wine Village Numerous vineyards surround the pretty village square. Masterton Urban centre of the Wairarapa region.

Getting There and Around

Air Wellington International Airport offers domestic flights to numerous North and South Island destinations, and international flights to Australia and the Pacific. Road Wellington is situated on State Highway 1. It is located on the Classic New Zealand Wine Trail, which runs from Hawke’s Bay to Marlborough, and is 1 hour from Wairarapa via the Rimutaka Hill. Coach companies provide regular services. Wellington to Auckland [658 km; 9 hr, 25 min] Wellington to Palmerston North [145 km; 2 hr, 5 min] Palmerston North to New Plymouth [234 km; 3 hr, 20 min] Wellington to Napier [323 km; 4 hr, 35 min] Napier to Taupo [143 km; 2 hr, 5 min] Rail TranzRail offers a daily service between Wellington and Auckland. Metropolitan services also operate as far as the Kapiti Coast and the Wairarapa. Ferry Vehicle and passenger services sail several times daily to Picton in the South Island.

Directory

Sounds Air

The fast and scenic way to cross Cook Strait, the Marlborough Sounds and to view Tasman Bay. Flights between Wellington and Picton, Wellington and Nelson and Wellington and Blenheim. Enjoy…

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Interislander

Interislander travels between the North and South Islands of New Zealand and offers one of the most spectacular cruises in the world. As you travel, take a stroll on the…

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Wellington Zoo

Enjoy a great family day out at Wellington Zoo and meet over 500 amazing native and exotic animals! We have fun animal talks and presentations every day, including the only…

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Wellington Rover Tours

Wellington’s Lord of the Rings tour professionals. Full-day and half-day options visiting the best movie locations in Wellington. Specialist LOTR guides and small groups enable us to bring the movies…

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Pataka Art & Museum

Only 15 minutes’ drive north of Wellington, Pataka is the cultural heart of Porirua City. Pataka has developed a world-class reputation for celebrating our heritage and showcasing the best in…

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National War Memorial

The stunning National War Memorial with its Tomb of the Unknown Warrior is a must-see. Observe wreath-laying ceremonies, hear the 74 bells of the world’s third-largest carillon, enjoy a pipe…

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Museum of Wellington City & Sea

Inside this historic building are the real stories of Wellington. Highlights include a show about Maori myths. Three floors of exhibitions feature stunning technology.

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City Gallery Wellington

Located in the heart of Civic Square, City Gallery Wellington offers visitors always captivating, sometimes challenging art from some of the world’s most exciting artists. With specific galleries dedicated to…

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Carter Observatory

Visit us at the Carter Observatory, two minutes’ walk from the top of the Cable Car. Carter offers you an extraordinary opportunity to learn about New Zealand’s southern skies through…

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Archives New Zealand

Te Rua Mahara o te Kāwanatanga. Come in to Archives New Zealand’s Wellington office, explore the rich heritage of our nation and see our national treasures. Gateway orientation space and…

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James Cook Hotel Grand Chancellor

The James Cook Hotel Grand Chancellor is renowned for its fantastic facilities, outstanding service and great location. Situated in the heart of Wellington City, the hotel provides convenient access to…

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Intercontinental Wellington

The only internationally branded five-star hotel in the capital is adjacent to the harbour and within walking distance of popular attractions. Offering a variety of accommodation options, with 231 guest…

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Zealandia: The Karori Sanctuary Experience

At ZEALANDIA you will see and hear some of the rarest, most extraordinary native wildlife on the planet. Discover our unique natural history in our interactive museum and learn about…

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Wellington Cable Car

Visit Wellington’s top spots. Views of city and harbour, Carter Observatory (admission fee), Cable Car Museum, Wellington Botanic Garden and Krupp Gun. Cable Cars run every ten minutes during the…

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Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

Te Papa is New Zealand’s innovative and interactive national museum. Our name literally means ‘container of treasures’. Here, you’ll discover the treasures and stories of New Zealand’s land and people.…

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Arty Bees Books

Bursting with more books than they know what to do with! Arty Bees Books stocks a huge range of books on almost every topic: NZ and non-fiction titles, rare and…

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Brentwood Hotel

Warm, welcoming and stylish, Brentwood Hotel is located between the airport and CBD in a quiet urban area. Twin/double, triple and quad rooms cater to families, groups, transit, conferences and…

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