a VirtualTourist member from Melbourne
Hi, me and my partner will be in NZ for about 3 days.
We are in Wellington before then and would like to get any suggestions on how far we can go from Wellington that's worth to see, coming back to Melbourne (from Wellington) 3 days later.
We know it's not much time, but would like to make the best out of our little time.
What sort of things are you interested in?
There are botique vinyards in the Waiarapa, whis is about 2 hours drive from wellington if this intrest you, also the sea lions at Cape Palliser in south Waiarapa are worth a visit.
You cant beat Wellington on a beautiful day.
But remember it can get a bit windy...but I dont mind...it gives the city "character". But bring a good jacket...just in case.
The waterfront is beautiful with some interesting sculptures along the way (and its free)
A Ferry ride to Somes Island is quite enjoyable if you are into walking. It has the post amazing views of the harbour....and you can check out giant weta's in their weta hotels.
Te Papa is our national museum and is a good place to visit. Sometimes there are some international exhbits (e.g Monet etc).
Or going out on a limb ......you could take a ferry to the South Island and spend the day at Picton. Its a big day out...but beautiful.
As the other VTer suggested there are some wonderful places and stunning coastline up through the Wairarapa.
Enjoy. Wellington is my New Zealand "happy place" I know you will love it.
For a start I would not venture out anywhere, neither to the Wairarapa nor to Picton, if I had only two or three days in Wellington. There is so much to see and do in the city and its suburbs, with definitely the best artworks in NZ dotted all over the place.
Wellington is very compact, and a lot of places are at walking distance. You can see and do a lot in a day.
Activities which would require about half a day each:
Karori Wildlife Sanctuary (Zealandia)
Things I would not want to miss:
- walk along the waterfront
- Take the bus around the harbour to Eastbourne and the boat back from Days Bay
- Mt Victoria for the best view of Wellington (no buses on the weekend)
- Botanic Garden (up by the famous cablecar, walk down via Observatory, Rose Garden, Boulcott St cemetery)
- Free tour of Parliament
- Old Government House
- Oriental Bay
- Te Papa (particularly exhibits about NZ's geology, including earthquake chamber)
- Museum of City & Sea
- Old St. Paul's
- Civic Square
The Karori Wildlife Sanctuary and Matiu/Somes Island are both fantastic for bird watching, with Karori having lots and lots of kaka (biggish parrots) and Somes Island a lot of kakariki (smaller green parrots) and geckos, and both islands plenty of inquisitive NZ robins. If you are interested in wildlife you should surely go to one of the two places.
If you are in Wellington during the right season you might consider a Seal Coast Safari. If you had more time you could take the bus to Owhiro Bay and walk along the seal coast and/or to Karori (City to Sea walk). But I think this is really only an option for longer stays as it takes more than half a day.
A lot of other things depend on your personal interests. For example, if you are interested you might want to go to Katherine Mansfield's house. I only went there on my tenth visit to Wellington and thought I should have done it earlier, so interesting it was.
Wellington is also the movie/cinema capital of NZ, so a visit to the Weta Workshops might be of interest.
More tips on Wellington on my VT page.