48-Hours of Fun in Wellington, New Zealand – How To See The Best in Two Days
New Zealand’s vibrant capital Wellington, has earned a reputation as the country’s cultural centre, bustling with cafes, restaurants, art spaces and theatres. Nestled between green hills in a stunning harbour setting, Wellington is an unforgettable destination for a weekend getaway
Te Papa Museum
Located on Wellington’s thriving waterfront, the Te Papa Museum of New Zealand hosts an unparalleled collection of national art and is recognised as one of the finest museums in the world with many innovative and interactive exhibitions. Housed in an impressive six-story building which includes cafes and natives gardens, you will discover many fascinating exhibits related to the unique biological, geological, social, and cultural history of New Zealand. One of the most popular Wellington activities, plan to spend most of a day here if you want to take in everything the museum has on display.
Wellington Cable Car
After a busy day exploring on foot, rest your legs on a trip aboard the famous Wellington Cable Car. The five-minute ride on the funicular railway which is over 100-years old offers spectacular views over the city and is still among the most popular tourist activities in Wellington. At the top, be sure to visit the cable car museum where you can marvel at the original winding machinery which propelled the cable car for over 70-years or visit the Space Place at the Carter Observatory. Take the cable car back down as the sun is setting for some spectacular photo opportunities over the harbour. Alternatively, if you prefer, take a relaxing stroll through the tree-lined paths of the Botanical Gardens, made up of 25-acres of protected native forest, exotic trees and colourful plants and flower displays. From here you can descend back down to the city centre in a delightful walk of about 40-minutes.
Experience Wellington’s Thriving Arts Scene
As New Zealand’s artistic capital, there are numerous Wellington contemporary art galleries that should be on the radar of any art lover. The Hamish McKay Gallery on Ghuznee Street, in the heart of the city, offers a constantly changing programme of installations and exhibitions featuring New Zealand and Australian artists. This important Wellington art gallery has made a huge contribution to the Australasian art scene, and a visit is highly recommended. The Page Blackie Gallery in the central business district has over 25-years of experience in the New Zealand art market, and they are the local experts in historical artworks.
Visit Cuba Street
While you’re in Central Wellington, be sure to enjoy a stroll along Cuba Street, a charming and eccentric avenue full of Bohemian culture, galleries and eateries. There is something for everyone here, with high-class restaurants, homely Caribbean influenced cafes, bustling bars, alleys full of street art and thriving antique and curiosity shops. It’s a great place to spend an evening and should be at the top of your list of things to do in Wellington at night.
Enjoy Wellington Nightlife at Courtenay Place
Wellington is one of the best cities in New Zealand to enjoy a night out on the town. Courtenay Place is widely considered Wellington’s party central, boasting a great mix of nightclubs, pubs and cocktail bars. There is something for everyone, whether you’re looking for a wild night of dancing and drinking, a relaxed evening at a sophisticated bar, or a spot to taste some famous New Zealand beer.
Explore Hutt Valley
There are plenty of places to explore outside of the city centre. Just a 15-minute drive from downtown Wellington is Hutt Valley, home to gorgeous scenery, rich culture and heritage and adventurous outdoor activities. Why not spend your second day exploring all that Hutt Valley has to offer? Take nature walks, go mountain biking and quad biking, or get up close to the incredible wildlife at Staglands Wildlife Reserve. If you need to hire a car to get there, car rentals at Wellington airport are available from a number of trusted providers.
Image Source: #1 Pixabay, #2 Wikimedia Commons by JShook, #3 Wikimedia Commons by Exmeasententia, #4 Wikimedia Commons by Bgabel, #5 Wikimedia Commons by Phillip Capper