Cafes & Restaurants
Wellington buzzes with cafés, delicatessens and restaurants - the waft of roasting coffee beans tells you quickly that this city likes to get everything exactly right.
It's easy for visitors to experience the different personalities of the city on foot. Courtenay Place is the nightlife nerve centre - it’s packed with restaurants, bars, cafes, cinemas and theatres. Cuba Street is bohemian and alternative - a great place to find ethnic cuisine.
Special Wellington food experiences include a chocolate café, a restaurant that puts a new spin on traditional Maori food and a seafood restaurant that’s housed in a restored historic woolshed.
Set between the harbour and rolling hills, New Zealand's capital city is known for its arts, heritage and culture.
Wellington is New Zealand’s political and administrative centre and home to many heritage attractions, such as the Parliament buildings, the Te Papa National Museum and the National Archives, which contain the original Treaty of Waitangi. Walk the city and discover numerous theatres, art galleries, funky shops. Visit Te Papa national museum on the Wellington waterfront to learn all about Māori and New Zealand arts and culture or stroll down Cuba Street for a slice of bohemia.
Lord of the Rings
The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy was filmed entirely in New Zealand and Wellington is home to Weta Workshop, Weta Digital and the Miramar film empire which is central to The Hobbit Trilogy production.
There are also numerous Lord of the Rings locations around Wellington. The most accessible filming location in Wellington is Mount Victoria, which is within walking distance of the central city. The forested areas of the mountain were used to depict Hobbiton Woods, where the hobbits hid from the black riders. Other Wellington locations include the Hutt River between Moonshine and Totara Park, which played the part of the River Anduin; and Harcourt Park, which was transformed into the Gardens of Isengard.
Wellington’s Kaitoke egioonal Park became Rivendell, where Frodo recovered from the knife attack. The exact location - a grassy area surrounded by native forest - is signposted from the carpark.
Wellington has led the nightlife scene in New Zealand for years and has more 20-34 year olds per capita than anywhere else in the country. So no matter what night or time of year you visit, you are guaranteed a great time.
Wellington’s after dark playground extends from swinging Courtenay Place to Willis Street, Lambton Quay and Queens Wharf. Scores of late-night cafes, restaurants, bars and clubs can be found within easy walking distance of central hotels and motels. The frenetic partying carries on well into the night, every night, but pulsates longer and louder from Thursday to Saturday. Often there seems to be no distinction between bars, cafes and clubs as many offer live music and dancing and live bands perform on the weekends.
The Infinity Experience
CultureTe Papa Museum
Weelington Harbour at NightShutterstock
Content & assistance provided by Tourism New Zealand.