Wellington, New Zealand - Abbey Travel - Abbey Travel, Ireland


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Welcome to Wellington


New Zealand’s capital city is nestled between rolling hills and a stunning harbour, and has a vibrant and compact downtown area that's easily explored on foot. The city is home to Te Papa, the national museum, which tells the story of New Zealand’s history through bold and interactive exhibits. In Wellington you’ll discover an amazing range of cafes, art galleries, theatres, attractions and a humming nightlife. The gourmet and wine experiences of the Wairarapa region are also just a short drive away. One thing not to miss is a ride in the cable car from Lambton Quay to the Botanic Gardens and a great way to see panoramic views of Wellington is to visit Mount Victoria.

The capital city of New Zealand, Wellington is located at the southern tip of the North Island. It is situated on a splendid harbour and hemmed in by steep hills, creating a compact inner city centre with a mix of historic and modern buildings. It is the second largest city in the country, the energetic centre for culture and arts, and the entertainment, commercial and political capital of New Zealand with an air of pronounced sophistication and vibrancy. Apart from its importance as the capital, it is the main departure point for the South Island.

Also called 'Windy Wellington', it lives up to its name especially in winter when the lashing winds from the Cook Strait whistle through the wind funnels created by the high-rise buildings of the central business district. The bustling, pretty waterfront area is a sheltered refuge with a graceful promenade, featuring shops, restaurants and various leisure activities. Brightly coloured sails scud across the harbour, the reliable wind providing excellent sailing and windsurfing opportunities.

Information & Facts


Wellington's climate is mild, with plenty of wind. Summers are mild and sunny and winters are wet and mild. The average temperature in January and February (the two hottest months) is 61°F (16°C) and in July, the coldest month, the average temperature is 47°F (8°C).

Getting Around

Wellington is very compact and it is easy to explore on foot, but the public transport option is a good one, for the city has an excellent system. Stagecoach is the name of the local bus service, which operates between 7am and 11.30pm each day, offering a Daytripper pass. The pass is also valid on the City Circular service, a hop-on-hop-off bus, which does the round of the top ten sightseeing spots every ten minutes. Taxis are another option, plentiful and convenient. A cable car connects downtown Wellington to the Botanic Gardens on the hilltop. Ferries ply between Wellington harbour and the village of Eastbourne. Those wishing to explore the outlying regions like the Hutt Valley, Wairarapa wine country, or Kapiti Coast can make use of the Tranz Metro train service.


The official languages in New Zealand are English and Maori.


Local currency is the New Zealand Dollar (NZD), divided into 100 cents. Most businesses accept MasterCard and Visa, and while Diners Club and American Express are also widely accepted in the main tourist centres, they might have limited acceptance elsewhere. Travellers cheques and foreign currency can be exchanged at banks, bureaux de change and some hotels. ATMs can be found in all towns and cities.


Wellington hosts a vibrant nightlife scene with a selection of pubs, bars and clubs all within a relatively short distance of one another in the city. Whether you're after a big night out, dance clubs, live music, chilled bars or quirky decor, Wellington has something on offer for everyone.

San Francisco Bath House is a popular live music venue in Wellington and plays host to a number of local bands, while Mighty Mighty is another great venue, with interesting decor, for those wishing to catch a live band. Good Luck is more suited to those who enjoy alternative music genres, it has a great dance floor and a chill-out area. Hope Bros is a trendy restaurant by day, and at night the tables are cleared and packed away to make room for a soon to be packed dance floor. Finally, the drum and bass scene is becoming more and more popular in New Zealand and Sandwiches is the place to go if drum and bass is your thing.

Wellington's leading attraction and one of the world's largest national museums, Te Papa is a tribute to all that is New Zealand; its people and history, natural environment, arts and culture. Interactive technology and superb displays bring the story to life. Motion simulators allow visitors to witness the explosive creation of pre-historic New Zealand, or to experience a virtual reality bungee jump. There is also an interactive section on volcanoes and earthquakes where the effects of an earthquake can be felt from inside a house and a volcanic eruption viewed on screen. Other attractions include a range of magnificent exhibitions featuring some of the country's most important Maori treasures, a modern 'marae' or Maori meeting house, and an informative display on the Treaty of Waitangi, between the Maori chiefs and European settlers in 1840. The natural world is also explored, featuring all the natural inhabitants of the country.

One of the most popular tourist attractions in Wellington, the cable car takes people to the lookout at Kelburn, where there is a beautiful view over the city and across the harbour. Visitors can either take a return journey or walk back down through the beautifully landscaped Botanic Gardens. At the top terminus there is the small Cable Car Museum explaining its history.

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