Wellington – Sojourn in World’s Coolest Little Capital
Plan a holiday in Wellington, New Zealand’s capital and the second most popular urban area. Located on the south-western tip of the North Island, it is the world's southernmost capital city of a sovereign state. The urban area of Wellington encompasses Welington city, Wellington Harbour, Porirua Harbour and Pacific Island communities. Wellington was ranked 12th most livable city in the 2014 Mercer Quality of Living Survey and the city also made it to the list of Lonely Planet Best in Travel 2011. Named after Arthur Wellesley, the first Duke of Wellington, the city was founded in 1840 by the inhabitants of the New Zealand Company. It is called as ‘Windy Wellington’ due to its location close to the opening of the narrow Cook Strait. While English is the most popularly spoken, French is close second.
Wellington International Airport is the primary international airport serving Wellington. Located at a distance of 6 km from the city center, it is directly connected to major domestic as well as international cities. The Wellington Aero Clun, a non-profit flight school is also located within the airport premise. Boasting of a temperate marine climate, the city can be visited all year round. Having an average sunshine of 2,059 hours per year, the average yearly temperature ranges around 25 °C. While it is windy all year round, the city is prone to southerly blasts in winter. The winter months last from May till September and frost bites are common. Starting from October, the weather gets warmer and is ideal time for outdoor activity. Festival of the Arts held in February or March is celebrated once in every two years. Comedy Festival, Fringe Festival, the famous Annual gay and lesbian carnival on first Saturday of March and Cuba Street Carniva are the main events hosted by the city.
Though this is comparatively small city but has plenty to offer the tourists. Take a trip on Wellington Cable Car to the Kelbrun Lookout. A scenic journey taking tourists up to Wellington's steep hill from Lambton Quay in the waterfront central district, the view from atop is simply enchanting. To know in details about the great and rich history of New Zealand, go to Museum of New Zealand which displays numerous exhibits. Museum of Wellington City & Sea is the perfect place to enjoy maritime history and the city's evolution. Hutt Valley, Kapiti Coast and Porirua are the popular beach areas. The Oriental Bay, with its beach and promenade is a wonderful place to relax and unwind.
The Beehive (most iconic building in the city), Wellington Botanic Gardens ( a25 hectare garden showcasing flower displays and native fauna), Zealandia (famous for its unique display of nature and wildlife), Katherine Mansfield House (childhood home of New Zealand's most famous author. Katherine Mansfield), City Gallery Wellington (leading contemporary art spaces in the country), Colonial Cottage Museum (city's oldest surviving original cottage), Princess Bay (a popular pace for picnic and hangout), Matiu Island (a secluded island getaway), Wellington Zoo, Mount Victoria and Wellington Waterfront are the major sightseeing tourist spots in Wellington.
Eating and Shopping
Multitudinous delightful options of eating are available in Wellington. The city boasts of offering more cafes, bars and restaurants per head than New York City. Fish and chips is the most popular and best value food available everywhere. It is not difficult to find Turkish kebabs or Lebanese food in the city. Malaysia food is very popular in Wellington. The city is also home to some of the best coffee roasteries and including the local Caffe L'affare. Most of the streets are lined with cafes where you can enjoy aromatic drinks along with tasty vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian quick food. Though the local are mostly prefer non vegetarian food, substantial number of veg only restaurants can also be found here. Boulcott St, Post Office Square, Oriental Bay and Wellington's CBD are the areas which are brimming with numerous restaurants and cafes. Significant number of Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Mexican and Thai restaurants can also be found. Wellington Night Market, open from 5 pm till late night is a great place to sample multicultural variety of food along with live music. Wellington has a lively nightlife, and most of the famous pubs, nightclubs and bars are concentrated around Courtenay Place and CBD district.
When in Wellington, shop beyond the contemporary. While the city does have its share of malls, super markets, departmental stores, branded outlets and luxury stores, the real charm of shopping in Wellington lies in the local street shops and flea market. Woolens, sheep skin items, traditional Maori crafts and outdoor gears are the popular buys in Wellington. Please note the at all shops apply a GST tax of 12.5 %; however it can be claimed back on exit from New Zealand. Lambton Quay, Golden Mile, Cuba Street, Oriental Parade and Tinakori Road Village are the most notable shopping areas in Wellington.
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