Top 10 things to do in Wellington

Labelled the world's ‘coolest little capital’ by Lonely Planet, Wellington is renowned for its vibrant creative culture. Here are the city's top 10 must-dos.

1. Visit Hannahs Laneway

Right in the heart of the city, the world's tastiest laneway is the perfect place to taste local flavours and pick up souvenirs. Hannahs Laneway is gourmet heaven thanks to residents Leeds St Bakery(opens in new window), Wellington Chocolate Factory(opens in new window), Shepherd(opens in new window) and Golding’s Free Dive(opens in new window)

2. Ride the Wellington Cable Car

The bright red Wellington Cable Car(opens in new window) is a bit of a classic. Enjoy a ride up from the terminal in the heart of the Lambton Quay shopping district up to the lookout for panoramic views of the city. You’ll also find the Cable Car Museum(opens in new window), Space Place at Carter Observatory(opens in new window) , and Botanic Garden(opens in new window).

3. Learn about movie-making magic

Take a behind-the-scenes tour at the Academy Award-winning Wētā Workshop(opens in new window) for a peek into incredible artistry and remarkable Kiwi innovation, as well as a few industry secrets. And of course, a visit to The Lord of the Rings locations is a must for Middle‑earth™ fans.

Explore NZ's film capital

4. Discover New Zealand wildlife

Get up close and personal with a three-eyed prehistoric reptile and New Zealand’s native birds (the kiwi) at nature reserve ZealandiaSpot seals at Red Rock Reserve or head over to Wairarapa to visit the home of endangered birds at Pukaha Mount Bruce. Wellington is brimming with nature experiences

5. Spend the day at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

No trip to Wellington is complete without a visit to the incredible Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa(opens in new window). Discover great treasures and stories of this country, its unique natural environment, Māori culture, art, heritage, and fascinating history at this innovative museum.

6. Attend a Wellington event

Wellington is renowned for its events that range from concerts and live theatre to sporting matches, exhibitions, and festivals. Among its long list of popular events are New Zealand Festival(opens in new window), an exciting and cutting-edge arts festival, and World of WearableArt™ Awards Show(opens in new window), a visual extravaganza combining arts, fashion, and theatrics. 

7. Tour boutique vineyards

Just over an hour’s drive or train ride from Wellington city will take you to Wairarapa, one of New Zealand’s premier wine regions. Once here, hire a bike from Green Jersey Cycles(opens in new window) in Martinborough to cycle your way around the boutique vineyards. You can even book a Martinborough Wine Tour day trip from Wellington. Easy! 

8. Take in the views at Mount Victoria Lookout

Nestled between a stunning harbour and protected green belt, there’s nothing quite like the view from Mount Victoria Lookout in the central city. You can drive all the way up, or walk through the nature trails. Grab some fish and chips and sit on the grass as the sun goes down and the lights come up.

9. Get your coffee fix

Named as one of the top 8 coffee cities in the world by CNN, Wellington knows its brews and beans. You’re spoilt for choice in New Zealand’s coffee capital and it’s pretty tough to go wrong, but for a typically Wellington brew and vibe, Flight Coffee’s The Hangar (opens in new window)is a good place to start.

10. Savour capital flavours

Known as New Zealand’s culinary capital, you won’t struggle to find excellent dining in Wellington, from eateries like Pickle & Pie(opens in new window) to stalwarts such as Ortega Fish Shack(opens in new window) and Logan Brown(opens in new window). Wellington is also renowned for its beer scene – barely a city block goes by without a specialist brew bar.

Explore more food experiences


spinner Loading

Where to next?