Wellington’s premier wildlife experience, ZEALANDIA is not to be missed! Escape the city and wander the walking tracks of this urban eco sanctuary where you will see and hear a thrilling abundance of native birds and may even see a tuatara. Take a night tour to spot a kiwi..
2. Wellington Zoo
Enjoy the plethora of animals and birds on display amongst the large, open habitats and leafy walkways of Wellington Zoo. Better still, get face-to-face with some big cats, meet a giraffe or hand feed a red panda with the zoo’s Close Encounters programme! One for the whole family.
3. Matiu Somes Island
Located in Wellington Harbour, Matiu Somes Island is a scientific and historic reserve managed by the Department of Conservation. Make it a day trip, catching the ferry from Queens Wharf in Wellington, wandering the pretty Matiu Somes loop track and visiting the gun emplacement site. As you go, watch for the beautiful red-crowned parakeet, North Island robin and other native birds. If you’re lucky you might even see blue penguins, weta, skinks, gecko and tuatara!
4. Seal Colony
Visit a colony of New Zealand fur seals within 20 kilometres of central Wellington! Te Kopahou Reserve can be reached on foot (get details from the Wellington i-SITE or local Department of Conservation office) or on a seal colony tour, departing daily from the Wellington i-SITE.
5. Kapiti Island
Although approximately 65km north of Wellington, Kapiti Island is worth the trip! From Paraparaumu Beach you’ll take a short boat trip across to the predator-free island sanctuary and spend a day exploring the tranquil nature trails looking at and listening to the hundreds of rare native birds. For something extra special stay overnight at Kapiti Nature Lodge and take a night kiwi spotting tour! Boat tickets must be booked in advance. Contact the Department of Conservation.
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