Things to do in
Wellington

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Our most recommended things to do in Wellington

From Wellington: Kapiti Island Nature Reserve Day Trip

1. From Wellington: Kapiti Island Nature Reserve Day Trip

Meet your host at the Kapiti Boat Club Paraparaumu and board a purpose-built jet boat for the short 20-minute trip to Ko te Waewae Kapiti o tara Rua ko Rangitani, also known as Kapiti Island. Prior to departure, your guide will take you through a short biosecurity check to ensure Kapiti Island is kept predator free. One of the reasons Kapiti Island is so special is that it does not have any mammalian predators. This means the bird life is not like on the mainland. On Kapiti, you will see and hear rare and endangered species that thrive on the island. On arrival at Kapiti Island, head up to the information center and gain a 20-minute overview of the ecology, natural history and birds you are likely to see on the island. Learn about the best tracks, how to best spot the bird, and where to swim. Then, set off on your own to soak up the beauty of the island. For an additional fee, you can enjoy a 1-hour guided walk with a world-class guide, prior to being let loose on the island. Whilst this is not a fully guided experience, your guide will be on the island for the day, available to answer any questions and help ensure you have the best day possible. After your self-guided experience, climb back onboard the boat to head back to the mainland, arriving around 2:45 PM.

Wellington: Return Cable Car Ticket

2. Wellington: Return Cable Car Ticket

Follow the Cable Car signpost around Lambton Quay to find the hidden Cable Car Lane in the heart of the city centre.  Wellington's iconic Cable Car travels through three historic tunnels and over three bridges. There are three intermediate stations; the residential areas of Clifton, Talavera and Salamanca. Victoria University of Wellington and Kelburn Park Fountain can be accessed from the Salamanca Station. Enjoy the panoramic views of Wellington city and the harbor from the top of the Cable Car. To get back down into the city, there are several walks through the hillsides of the Botanic Garden, including a beautiful 40-minute stroll back down to the city centre via the historic Bolton Street Cemetery and the Beehive. Or if you prefer an easier route back down, choose the return journey option. This allows you plenty of time to enjoy the views and explore the surrounding attractions at the summit before heading back.

Martinborough Winery Tour

3. Martinborough Winery Tour

Enjoy a 5 hour guided tour of the Martinborough wine region in the Wairarapa starting with a spectacular drive over the stunning Remutaka Ranges. Stop at the Remutaka Summit for amazing views before heading down into the Wairarapa.  Enjoy the view across the Stuart Macaskill Lakes from the viewing platform perched in the native bush above. Visit three of the Martinborough regions' best wineries and enjoy their Cellar Door experiences as you sample the world-class products available. Specific wineries are available by request. Visit C'est Cheese and try some of their locally produced cheeses or something from further afield. Have a look at the on-site cheese factory and peruse the available cheeses from around the country and the world. Great place to grab a snack for the road if needed.  Transportation is available. Guests may share a vehicle with others. No exclusivity guaranteed.

Wellington: 9-Minute Scenic Flight Ride

4. Wellington: 9-Minute Scenic Flight Ride

Soar high and get a birds-eye perspective with land and ocean views from all angles. Enjoy a scenic flight over Wellington and discover the city from a unique aerial perspective. Moments after boarding your helicopter, ascend from the heart of New Zealand's capital city on a short 9-minute exhilarating flight. In an instant, the Wellington landscape will be brought into perspective before your eyes. Marvel at the unique birds-eye views of the skyline below you, dotted with iconic buildings such as Te Papa, the Beehive, and the Cake Tin. You may even get to see the Marlborough Sounds and upper South Island on clear days.

Wellington Cocktail Discovery Tour & 4 Cocktail Creations

5. Wellington Cocktail Discovery Tour & 4 Cocktail Creations

Love cocktails? Taste and enjoy cocktails and nibbles to get your evening started on the right note. Get away from the tourist trap, enjoy the local and quirky atmosphere and sample some of Wellington’s best cocktail creations.  On this guided 2.5-hour walking tour, you will be guided through the popular entertainment areas, soaking in the city’s vibrant personality, famous for its street art, food, and drinks culture. You will hear about the history of the bars and meet the master mixologists at each location through this fun, informal yet informative drinking tour. By the end of the tour, you will learn about the best watering holes in town with plenty of time (and local knowledge) to continue with the fun on a night out.

Zealandia by Day Tour

6. Zealandia by Day Tour

Discover New Zealand’s native wildlife on an immersive 2-hour guided walking tour at Zealandia Ecosanctuary. Located 10-minutes from Wellington CBD, the fully-fenced, predator-free ecosanctuary is home to some of the world’s most extraordinary and vulnerable animals.  Zealandia can be easily reached by car, free shuttle, or cable car from Wellington CBD. Check in at the vistor center ticket desk where you will meet your guide. Begin with introduction in the ecosanctuary’s exhibition. You will complete a short bio-security bag check before you can enter the sanctuary. This is to prevent any predators from entering the sanctuary with you. Then, venture out into the sanctuary to discovery the riches of our native flora and fauna at its very best.  Make the most of your visit with your expert guide, who will share with you the history, sights and sounds of the forest and its secrets. Witness the highly intelligent kākā (bush parrot), kakariki, tūī and bellbirds at feeding stations positioned along the sanctuary’s walkways. After 2 hours exploring the vast parklands, you will return to the visitor center. Relax after your tour with a coffee or meal at Cafe Rata. 

Museum of NZ Te Papa Tongarewa: Gallipoli Early Entry Ticket

7. Museum of NZ Te Papa Tongarewa: Gallipoli Early Entry Ticket

Avoid the crowds and enter the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa before it opens to the public at 10:00 AM, and access the "Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War" exhibition to learn more about one of the major campaigns of World War I. Get a short introduction from a knowledgeable guide, and then explore at your own pace. Combining the world of museums with the world-class creative artistry of Weta Workshop, the ground-breaking exhibition tells the story through the eyes and words of eight ordinary New Zealanders who found themselves in extraordinary circumstances.  Learn all about the giant sculptures that took a staggering 24,000 hours to create. Encounter 3D maps and projections, miniatures, models, dioramas, and a range of interactive experiences that will bring New Zealand's Gallipoli story to life. Then, use your entry ticket to explore the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa's vast collections at leisure.

Wellington: Fear Factory Haunted House Admission Ticket

8. Wellington: Fear Factory Haunted House Admission Ticket

Feel the adrenaline rush and learn about Wellington’s haunted history in the heart of New Zealand’s capital city.  Enter the interactive dark and venture below the deck of the Lost Ghost Ship. Discover a nautical nightmare inside the HMS Wayfarer.  Grab a group of friends, your family, or someone you really trust and take on this white-knuckle adventure. Challenge yourselves and see who can last the longest.  If you decide you’ve had enough before the 30-minute tour is up, there is a way out: scream “I chicken out!” You will be immortalized on the ever-growing chicken counter, which has more than 1,300 people listed.

Martinborough Wine and Food Tour with Lunch from Wellington

9. Martinborough Wine and Food Tour with Lunch from Wellington

Embark on a guided tour with an experienced local guide to the Martinborough region from Wellington.  After meeting your guide, you will enjoy a scenic drive over the Remutaka Ranges, with a brief stop at the summit, before descending into the Wairarapa region.  Taste a range of fantastic local and imported cheeses and gourmet foods at a popular local cheese shop in Featherston. Experience Martinborough winemaking by visiting some of the oldest vineyards in the region, before savoring a delicious lunch overlooking the spectacular countryside.  At the Martinborough Brewery, you will be able to sample 4 of the 8 craft beers on offer and wander amongst the oldest olive trees in Martinborough. Learn about different varieties of olive and how they are grown. You will also find out how to taste olive oil like a professional, before discovering how to use the full range of infused oils in quick, easy and delicious recipes.

1-Way Ferry Service Between Wellington and Picton

10. 1-Way Ferry Service Between Wellington and Picton

Sit back, relax and enjoy one of the most spectacular ferry crossings in the world, between the north and south islands of New Zealand. With 92 kilometers of breathtaking views, the 3.5-hour journey between Wellington and Picton is one of New Zealand’s most iconic tourist activities.   There are 3 different ships in operation every day. Whether you are travelling alone or with your vehicle, you’ll always have a wide choice of travel times.   Once on board, enjoy a range of activities. Stroll on the decks, enjoy a meal and a drink, or catch one of the latest movie releases. You can also simply relax and take in the breathtaking view. Keep your children busy with a play area, nursery, cartoons and video games. Plus, there’s plenty of seating for families.

Frequently asked questions about Wellington

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What people are saying about Wellington

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 553 reviews

This was a very interesting journey into the world of cocktail making in Wellington. Anna and I really enjoyed meeting with some of the people behind the cocktails here and also getting an insight into the deep thought and 'philosophy' behind the various approaches to creating these drinks (which also tasted great!). Each of the four places we visited had their own unique approach to making cocktails which were great to hear about. Our guide Jon was great company and indeed has as rich and varied a background as the cocktails we enjoyed, thus adding to the enjoyment of our trip. I would like to wholeheartedly recommend this tour as in addition to being a lot of fun, it also provides a unique chance to peer behind the veil of cocktail making in Wellington!

Our party was picked up from our door which was helpful. There was a craft market in Martinborough which held up the traffic but understanding that this was out of the driver's control, Phil was able to keep the dialogue going around local history.

Great staff. Amazing pilot and humorous. Perhaps the single most amazing experience I have ever had. Thank you all so much.

A perfect evening, clear starry sky, just perfect for a walk through the forest. Lots of kiwis on the prowl.

Fantastic tour, never knew these places existed - highly recommended