New Zealand’s capital has a reputation for being wet and windy on a regular basis, but all it takes is one day of sunshine to show you why this is one of the best holiday destinations in the country.
Welly’s somewhat temperamental weather aside, the city has made its name on the back of quirky culture, be it the booming craft beer scene, its art-laden streets, or the friendly and fruity locals you’re sure to meet. Visitors with a creative spark are sure to fit right in.
Like most cities the centre is where most of the action happens, and for Welly that’s Cuba Street. Travel out from there in any direction and you’ll find a diverse range of eateries, family activities, or lovely places to just sit and watch Wellington do its thing.
It’s a coastal city too, so prepare yourself for magnificent sea views at every turn. Situated just about in the middle of the country, on the very bottom of the North Island, it’s also a great base for further exploring what NZ has to offer.
Not one to rest on its laurels, Wellington is always adding to its list of attractions. From Peter Jackson’s world famous Weta Workshop to Zealandia, the bird sanctuary just minutes from the city centre, and on the many boutique burger joints on almost every corner, there’s truly something for any type of traveller.
Best time to go
“You can beat Wellington on a good day” is a local cliché – and it’s true. The sparkling harbour during summertime is a thing of beauty, and the many hills and parks show off New Zealand’s capital at its best. Conversely, a stormy, windy day in winter can be a blast, but make sure you wrap up warm and don’t bother with an umbrella.
How much will it cost
The strength of the Kiwi dollar means New Zealand has overall costs comparable to most developed countries. At the low end, budget NZD $150 per day for a holiday travelling on bus passes, camping and staying in budget accommodation. If you’re visiting for more than a few weeks, buying a cheap car or camper van can be a cost-effective way of seeing the country.
With no snakes or otherwise dangerous animals, your biggest risk might be sunburn caused by the strong summer UV. New Zealand has an excellent healthcare system and all visitors are covered for medical treatment resulting from accidents. Any costs from illness will need to covered by your travel insurance.
Citizens from over 50 countries, including Australia, the UK, USA and most European countries, do not need to apply for a visitor’s visa, and can stay in New Zealand for up to three months. A range of business, work, study and other visas are also available.