10 Fun Things to do in Wellington On Your First Visit

Things to do in Wellington New Zealand

Looking for the most fun things to do in Wellington New Zealand? Well, that won’t be too hard! With its amazing food and brewery scene, surrounding nature, and epic history, there’s an endless amount of great Wellington activities to enjoy. Follow along with our Wellington New Zealand travel guide as we take you through the waterfront, up onto Mount Victoria, and much more!

10 Fun Things to do in Wellington New Zealand

1. Walk the Wellington Waterfront 

One thing you can’t ignore when looking for Wellington things to do is the beautiful harbor. Stroll the Wellington waterfront and take in the stunning boats as they gleam off of the clear blue ocean.

While the city is known for it’s windy weather, on a perfect day there’s nothing better than being down by the water. Stop in at a bar or cafe for a drink, and make sure to take a dip at Oriental Bay in the summer!

Wellington New Zealand Waterfront 

2. Hike Mount Victoria 

Once you’ve checked out the Wellington waterfront it’s time to get a view from above! Hiking Mount Victoria is one of the best things to do in Wellington. It’s an amazing way to get out into nature and see the unique trees and plant life of New Zealand.

While the hike is fairly steep, it won’t take your more than an hour to go up the Mount Victoria Lookout Trail. Once you get to the top you’ll have a gorgeous view of the city and coastline.   

→ Mount Victoria Lookout: How to Get the Best Views of Wellington

Best Things to Do in Wellington

3. Brewery Hop Around Downtown 

Wellington is not only home to New Zealand’s Parliament, but is also known as the craft beer capital! Auckland has its fair share of places to go out, but its North Island counterpart has a plethora of unique breweries to enjoy.

One of the most fun Wellington New Zealand activities is to hop from brewery to brewery and taste some of the delicious New Zealand craft beer! 

→ Best Wellington Breweries: Taste of the Craft Beer Capital Trail

Wellington New Zealand Brewery

4. Ride the Wellington Cable Car 

If you’ve ever glanced at pictures of the capital then you’ve likely seen the famous red cable car making its way above the city. So when looking for Wellington things to do this should be at the top of your list!

The train goes from the Lambton Quay shopping district to the Kelburn suburb above. We recommend taking it on the way up, and then walking down through the gardens towards the Wellington waterfront. 

→ Wellington Cable Car: Fun Ride to the Beautiful Botanical Gardens

Things to do in Wellington New Zealand

5. Stroll Through the Botanical Gardens

By riding the cable car you’ll actually be able to combine two of the most fun things to do in Wellington! The botanical gardens are a stunning display of color that winds from the top of the Kelburn suburb back into the city.

The best part is it’s completely free to enter and stroll the grounds. The most amazing time to visit is in the summer when over 30,000 tulips are in bloom.

Things to do in Wellington NZ

6. Explore Cuba Street 

This is the main street in the city and truly what brings Wellington New Zealand to life! The eccentric vibes coming out of the cafes and bars make Cuba Street a fun place to walk around, even if you’re not dipping in for a meal.

However, if you are then you’ll have plenty of options to eat and drink out! Some of our favorite hangouts are Fidel’s Cafe for coffee and the Wellington Seamarket for their famous fish n’ chips.

Wellington Cuba Street 

7. Te Papa Museum 

The history of New Zealand is truly remarkable and there’s no place better to see that than Wellington’s Te Papa Museum. The many displays feature a mix of the country’s natural history and a wealth of information about the capital city.

On the day we visited they had an entire exhibit on New Zealand’s part in the Gallipoli Campaign of World War I. Interesting to say the least! With free entrance and the perfect location near the harbor, the museum was easily one of our favorite things to do in Wellington. 

Te Papa Museum Wellington New Zealand

8. Hit the Wellington Beach 

The first time we turned the corner from the harbor heading towards Mount Victoria we couldn’t believe our eyes! Wellington is known for having one of most stunning city beaches in the world, and after seeing Oriental Bay we’d have to agree. During summer it’s packed with happy beachgoers, and literally is only a 10 minute walk from downtown.

→ 25 Beautiful New Zealand Beaches on the North & South Island

Wellington New Zealand Beach

9. Tour the Bee Hive 

Taking a tour of New Zealand’s parliament building is one of the most popular Wellington things to do. So what makes this architecture so special? Well, the unique design of this particular wing is in the shape of a bee hive!

Touring this building will be a fun way to see the behind the scenes of this special country of just over 5 million. Maybe if you get lucky you’ll even run into the Prime Minister!

Bee Hive New Zealand

10. Get a Taste of International Food

We mentioned Cuba Street as a great place eat out in Wellington, but really that’s just the beginning of it. Much like the food scene in Auckland, Wellington has endless amounts of amazing international food.

We had our fill of Indian, Chinese, and other tasty specialties on our last visit. Also, make sure to check out the options near the Wellington waterfront and in the suburb of Newtown if you get a chance.

Wellington New Zealand

Have any questions about this article, or want to share more fun things to do in Wellington New Zealand? Leave us a comment below! 

Safe Travels,
Brigitte & Jake

Where in the world are we? Follow our daily adventures on Instagram @nothingfamiliar

Where To Stay In Wellington New Zealand

Ultra Luxury (High End) – InterContinental Wellington – The InterContinental brand is known worldwide for its luxury, and Wellington is no different. Modern furnished rooms, indoor heated pool & spa, and located steps from the waterfront near all the best Wellington activities.

Fun Vacation (Mid Range) – Sofitel Wellington – Right in Wellington CBD with views of the famous botanical gardens. Great place for couples and solo travelers that want to be close to all the action of the city.

Longterm Travel (Budget) – U Boutique Hotel – Unique hotel right in the heart of downtown. Gourmet breakfast is available, and is walking distance to all the amazing things to do in Wellington.

Hostel Life (Cheap Stay) – The Marion Hostel – The perfect hostel to visit all the best breweries in Wellington from! Private rooms and dorms, large kitchen, and a helpful staff.

For more places to stay in Wellington you can explore the latest prices here!



New Zealand Travel Planning 

Jucy Van: The best way to explore New Zealand is with a Jucy camper! We spent over six weeks driving around the North and South Islands in a van and loved every moment.

 Rental Car: If you’re not renting a van you’ll need a car to see this country. We use Discover Cars when traveling and enjoy having the freedom to get around.

 Flights: It’s easy to find cheap flight deals using Skyscanner and Kayak. That’s how we got flights from Auckland to Queenstown for $40 USD, and New Zealand to Fiji for less than $150! 

 Accommodation: Compare multiple sites to get the best deal such as Booking.com and Agoda. Also,  Hostelworld should be your go to if you’re traveling on a budget. 

 Tours: Check out Get Your Guide to find activities all over New Zealand! They have everything from tickets to the Waitomo Glowworm Caves to a Hobbiton movie set tour, and even a Northland hole in the rock dolphin cruise

 Travel Insurance: Never travel abroad without being covered. We’ve been using SafetyWing for insurance the last few years and they are always there when we need them.

 Packing Lists: Find all the inspiration you need with our Amazon packing lists. Including our electronics and camera gear, must-have medical items, and long flight essentials

North Island New Zealand

Travel Tips & Guides:  10 Helpful NZ Travel TipsNorth Island ItinerarySouth Island Itinerary25 Beautiful BeachesWellington to Picton Ferry15 Freedom Camping Tips27 Delicious Food & Drinks

Auckland & Northland: Piha Beach & Kitekite FallsCape Reinga LighthouseRussellMangonuiMount EdenDevonport Day TripWaiheke Island Guide9 Best Waiheke Wineries

Lake Taupo: 17 Fun Things to DoMount Tauhara HikeBest Street ArtTaranaki Falls – Huka Falls Walk14 Tongariro Crossing Tips 

New Plymouth: 10 Fun Things to DoDawson FallsTe Rewa Rewa BridgeParitutu Rock HikeEgmont National Park

Bay of Plenty:  TairuaHot Water BeachCathedral Cove Walk8 Maunganui Things Not to MissMount Maunganui HikeEast Cape Road TripHow to Find Tua Tua Clams 

Rotorua & Raglan: Kerosene CreekRedwoods Treewalk8 Raglan Things to DoBridal Veil Falls

Explore all our South Island New Zealand Travel Tips & Guides

North Island New Zealand

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