Places

16 Must Do Activities In Wellington

16 must do activities in Wellington – if you are spending time in this amazing city, then here is my list of must do’s!

Visit Te Papa Museum

A visit to Te Papa museum is a must when visiting this city. There are new exhibitions there all the time such as the World of Wearable Arts, Peter Jackson’s Gallipoli Exhibition or the Lego Exhibition. There is always something for everyone. Go and check out the earthquake house or the giant squid! If you get hungry, there are two cafes there where you can grab a bite to eat.

Try Some Amazing Peanut Butter

Go down to Hannah’s Laneway in Eva Street and try the artisan Fix and Fogg Peanut Butter which is made here in Wellington. The Fix and Fogg peanut butter comes in 9 different varieties. I have tried a few of them and I’ve enjoyed all of them. My partner really likes their Smoke and Fire flavored one which is a peanut butter with chillies. Yes, chillies! On their menu they have gourmet toast with their peanut butter like Granola Butter and Blueberry Toast, Black Forest Toast or Bircher muesli with Fix and Fogg peanut butter, Satay Noodle Salad and even ice cream with their peanut butter in it.

Go To The Mt Vic Lookout

Go up to the Mount Victoria lookout and have a look at the amazing 360 degree views of the city. Just take a jacket as it gets quite windy up there! You can drive, take a bus or walk there. This lookout is a very popular tourist attraction. It is also popular with runners and people on bikes. On your way back, walk down along one of the walking trails that take you back to the city.

Wellington harbor

Visit The Botanical Gardens

Walk through the Botanical Gardens in Kelburn, not far from the Beehive. It has 25 hectares of beautiful plants, trees and colorful flowers. There is also a big kids’ playground, a duck pond and a café to stop and have a break at. Or you can take a picnic and sit amongst the flowers. At the top of the Botanical Gardens, there is the cable car which you can ride back down.

Botanical Gardens Wellington

Try Some Duck Island Ice Cream

Love ice cream? Then check out the Duck Island Ice Cream on Cuba Street. They have 24 flavors to choose from! Salted Chocolate Brownie, White Chocolate Pomegranate Macadamia, Blackberry Sage Honey, Boysenberry Cheesecake, Ambrosia, Toasted Marshmallow and Bourbon Brown Butter Pecan to name a few. You can enjoy these flavors on a cone or they have tubs you can take home or back to your hotel.

Ice cream cones in Wellington

Go Up The Cable Car

Take the cable car up the Kelburn hill from Wellington’s busiest shopping street Lambton Quay. It’s about a 5 minute ride up the hill. Once you get there, enjoy the stunning views of the city as well as the Cable Car Museum. Beside the museum there are the Botanical Gardens you can visit while you are there. On the other side, the is the Carter Observatory. Check out this planetarium where you can learn all about the planets and galaxies!

The cable car in Wellington

Take A Tour Of The Chocolate Factory

Head down to the Wellington Chocolate Factory in Eva Street in the city. Take a tour and see how they make their chocolate from bean to bar. The chocolate bar wrappers are designed by local artists which is really cool. Then sit down and enjoy their delicious hot chocolate or iced chocolate. They even have board games on their tables to play while you are sipping away. Don’t forget to buy yourself a couple of blocks before you leave!

Visit The Weta Cave

Visit the famous Weta Cave in Miramar and check out exhibits and props of the Lord Of The Rings and Hobbit movies as well as others. There is also a tour you can go on. There is a behind the scenes documentary you can watch with interviews with Peter Jackson and Richard Taylor. This one is a must do for all LOTR fans!

Weta Cave gollum
Me posing with Gollum

Walk Along Queens’ Wharf

People watch, have a beer and some lunch outside Dockside or St John’s Bar where they have big bean bags to sit on the lawn on while you soak up the sunshine. There are lots of places to sit along the waterfront, you could take a picnic and watch the skateboarders, cyclists and runners go by. There is also a kids play area there called Frank Kitts Park.

Wellington Waterfront

Visit The Breweries

If you like craft beer, there are plenty of breweries to check out in Wellington. Whistling Sisters on Taranaki Street, Garage Project in Aro Street, Macs Brewery on the waterfront, Parrot Dog in Lyall Bay or Waitoa in Hataitai. With interesting flavors like chocolate beer and pickle beer, I’m sure you will find one to enjoy!

A range of Wellington Craft Beers in glasses on a table

Have Lunch or Dinner at The Markets

Visit The Capital Market on Willis Street (open every day) and also the Wellington Night Market on Cuba Streets (Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays only). They have a range of different street foods available with really generous portion sizes!

Go To The Brooklyn Wind Turbine

Check out the big wind turbines up the Brooklyn hill and see some amazing views of Wellington City. To start the walk, head to Aro Street where you will see some wind turbine signs. The walk takes about two hours but once you get there, you’ll love the views and seeing all the native birds along the way.

Wind farm Brooklyn Wellington

Visit the Otari Wilton’s Bush

Get out into nature and walk through this public garden featuring native plants and trees. Here there are about 1200 different plants and species amongst the 11 kilometers of walking tracks. There are guided tours available or you can self guide on the nature trail. There are picnic and barbecue areas to use with barbecues for you to use. Kids can explore the forest and check out Wellington’s oldest tree

New Zealand Bush in Wellington

Visit The Wellington Museum

Wellington Museum is on Queens Wharf in the city. This museum tells you all about Wellington’s history starting from the 1900s. It was actually voted one of the world’s 50 best museums! So go check it out, it’s free to enter.

Look Around the Petone Shops

Most people when they come to Wellington just stay and do things around the middle of the city but try heading out further to Petone and Lower Hutt. Do some shopping along Petone’s main shopping road. There’s so many interesting and unique shops there with little knick knacks! Then go and check out the Petone Settlers Museum and take on board the local history!

Go Up Mt Kaukau

Mt Kaukau is just above Khandallah and goes down to Crofton Downs. Stop and have lunch at The Village after because you will be hungry! Mt Kaukau is actually the highest visible point in Wellington. Once you have hiked up there, there are some amazing photo opportunities up there! There are a number of entries from around the Johnsonville and Khandallah areas.

There’s plenty of things to explore in this cool little city ! These are just some of my must do activities in Wellington. For some family friendly ideas check out my previous post here https://travelwellingtonwithme.com/9-family-friendly-things-to-do-in-wellington/

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12 Comments

  1. Peanut butter with chilli and 3 craft breweries, this sounds our kind of place! More seriously there are some great suggestions here. I’m so looking forward to being able to travel again.

    1. Yes you will have to try them, you won’t be disappointed! Me too, I am meant to be travelling to Europe, I can’t wait!

  2. Thanks for the list. I’ve been to New Zealand, but not to Wellington. Next time.

    1. Yes you will have to come down here next time!

  3. You had me at ice cream!

    1. Hehe It’s pretty delicious and they have such unusual flavors to choose from!

  4. Great list! Every time I go down to Wellington (I live in Auckland I never know what there is to do… now I’m excited for the next time I go down!

    1. I’m glad I could help!

  5. I would so love to visit anywhere in New Zealand! It sounds truly glorious and I like that there’s so much to see and do in Wellington. Thanks for sharing.

    1. You’re welcome Joleisa! I hope you can come and visit one day !

  6. I’ve wanted to visit new zealand for the longest time! This has convinced me even more – it looks like there’s so much to do!!!

    1. Oh great! Let’s hope we can all travel soon! I truly think you will enjoy this city when you do get to visit!

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