New Zealand's culture capital

Nestled on rolling green hills that spill down to a charming harbour, New Zealand’s capital is an epicentre of culture and creativity – renowned for its arts, gastronomy, heritage and bohemian character.

  • Explore the capital’s best museums like Te Papa.
  • Delve into the world of Lord of the Rings with a tour of the Weta Workshop Studios.
  • Wander through the creative CBD and the pedestrianised Cuba Street.
  • Visit Zealandia by night and see if you can spot one of the 130 native kiwis.

It’s no surprise Lonely Planet recently named Wellington the coolest little capital in the world, this compact city is as charming as it is picturesque. Victorian timber houses line steep winding streets down to a lively and eclectic centre, waterfront promenades weave around the bay to exposed wind-swept coastlines and grassy hilltops offer spectacular views across the sparkling inlet.

The CBD is a creative hub and easy to get around by foot. Wander pedestrianised Cuba Street to get a taste of what makes this city tick with its theatrical street performers, colourful sculptures, cafes spilling out into the road, boutique shops and numerous watering holes to sample the local craft beers and coffee that the city is renowned for. Wellington is also home to New Zealand’s national museum, Te Papa, which is well worth a visit for an interactive account of the country’s history and insight into Maori culture and traditions.

An hour’s drive north of Wellington takes you to the rural region of Wairarapa with its lightly populated townships and a thriving wine scene. Visit Martinborough, the heart of the wine industry or head out to the coast to reach the southernmost point of the North Island, Cape Palliser.

Discover the capital of New Zealand. Relish in the delicious array of food markets Wellington has to offer. Explore the commonly named “windy city” by cable car, appreciating the beautiful bays and beaches that neighbour Wellington’s thriving CBD.

Our top accommodation in Wellington

Here are some of our travel designers' favourite options