If you’re lucky enough to spend one day in the smallest but coolest capital of the world, there are a few things you shouldn’t miss. Today it’s all about Wellington, a beautiful, little city, surrounded by rolling hills and the sea. Compared to Berlin Wellington has an exceedingly small number of inhabitants, but nevertheless a lot to offer. The difference between Wellington and Auckland is a bit like the difference between Melbourne and Sydney. While Auckland is the shiny, northern sister, Wellington is an exciting, bohemian city, filled with an exuberant array of fancy bars and tiny cafes, that take coffee as seriously as a religion. You will find a wide range of contemporary art galleries, lovingly decorated shops and delicious food, in a vibrant, urban and most of all relaxed atmosphere.
Start your day with a little workout and walk up Mount Victoria. Narrow, winding streets lead to the first viewpoint. You should absolutely have a go on the tyre swing, watch the ferries sail into the harbour and the planes go in and out the airport. Further up you’ll reach the highest viewpoint with a windy but wonderful panoramic view of Wellington, the natural harbor and the sea. ‘Windy Wellington’ definitely lives up to it’s name up here.
Best thing to do in the city center is walking up and down Cuba Street. Bars, cafés and shops are all clustered together to a microcosmos of beautiful things and one can spent hours looking at all the old and beautiful villa facades and street art. Afterwards you can leisurely stroll along the waterfront and watch the couples and cool skater boys, because there are damn many. The best part of Wellington is the fact that you don’t have to worry about public transportation, because everything is 10 minute walk away from wherever you are at the moment and that walk is injected with coffee, food and fashion.
If you still haven’t had enough and want to plunge into Wellington’s nightlife, this is going to be a hard decision. Wellington’s bars are known for setting trends in cocktails all over the world. There’s Matterhorn, a local institution for good drinks and New Zealand’s music scene. Crumpet where ‘Darling’ is mixing cocktails with great skill or you try to find Motel Bar, allegedly hiding somewhere in a quiet lane of Tory Street. If you find an inconspicuous wooden door, ring the white doorbell and wait for the buzz, not till then follow the steps up to the top. Something like this or similar was the description to this mysterious bar, which we unfortunately never found and finally ended up in a karaoke bar. I guess I have to come back and discover all the hidden beauties, because time was much to short at this wonderful place.
Positively Wellington Tourism · 2-6 Gilmer Terrace · 10017 Wellington
Text & pictures by Anke Nunheim