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Things To Do In Wellington Region
The city of Wellington in New Zealand is one the most happening places in the world. Located at the southern tip of the North Island gives it the advantage of having a picturesque backdrop; huddled by mountains on one side and the ocean on the other. The landscape opens up a number of opportunities for tourists from things to do in the city to rugged adventures in the midst of Wellington’s natural splendour. Read on to find out what prospects await you when in Wellington.
Ride the Cable Car
The iconic cable car ride is a five-minute journey that will take you from the city-centre to the suburbs of Kelburn. The ride passes through lush green mountain-sides and through 3 tunnels providing a spectacular view of Wellington City nestled among the mountains. Originally built to connect the two places, the cable car is a spectacular way to commute if you are planning to visit Wellington Botanical Garden. While you are there, make sure you visit the cable car museum and wander about the scenic Kelburn.
Enjoy the Sandy Beaches of Wellington
Wellington is blessed with some of the most gorgeous beaches in the area, with fine sandy shores and gentle waters, it is the perfect place to relax. The Oriental Beach with its beautiful cityscape backdrop is perfect for sunbathing and swimming. A little away from the city is Scorching Bay, the perfect place for beach-side parties and picnics. If you wanted to indulge in some water sports, then Lyall Bay is the place to be. It is the most popular location for all kinds of surfing.
Trek Mount Victoria
The summit of Mount Victoria is popular among tourist for its 360° view that overlooks hills and valleys, islands and bays. There are a couple of ways to summit the mount, one winds through the forest and is the shorter of the two paths. It is an exciting trek that is great for beginners and professionals alike. The trail should take around half an hour to complete. The longer route follows the road and overlooks the Oriental Bay and the magnificent cityscape. This walk is easier and is best for rainy weathers. It also has some beautiful views. For those who want to catch the view without the trek, you could always drive up or take a bus to the summit. On a non-windy day, the lookout is a great place for a picnic.
Zealandia is an eco-sanctuary that is located on the Karori Reservoir that sprawls over 225 hectares of lush green forest land. About ten minutes away from the city, Zealandia is a remarkable conservational effort that has seen the successful return of many a native species that once lived here. To understand the need for such an effort it is important to understand the nature of life that evolved in the country. Having been isolated for tens of billions of years, it had developed life forms that were truly unique; lifeforms that were threatened with the arrival of humans and tag-along pests that they had not adapted to.
Now with great effort, a walled sanctuary protects indigenous birds like the little-spotted kiwi, Kaka, Tuatara, kereru and other species from such predators so they can thrive. There are guided walking tours through the valley that will give you a deeper insight on the journey that life of New Zealand has been through.
Given the location, Wellington has some exciting tracks that are perfect for mountain biking. Makara Peak Mountain Bike Park is the best anyone can ask for. They have many tracks that begin from the summit and are categorized by level of difficulty. The North Face trail requires advanced mountain biking experience, while Magic Carpet is so easy that even children can have a go at it. Trickle Falls is the most challenging of all tracks and is sure to give bikers the adventure they are looking for. Another great location is the Red Rocks Coastal Track, it follows a gravel filled coastline and is of moderate difficulty. It is a great place to take a stroll as well. A similar track can be found from the Brooklyn Wind Turbine, which is also a trek-able route.
Adventure at Kaitoke Regional Park
About an hour's drive away from Wellington, overlooking the Upper Hutt Valley, is the breathtaking lush green rainforest of Kaitoke Regional Park. The park extends over 2500 hectares in area and is so gorgeous that Rivendale, the elvish land from the Hobbit was filmed here. The park is great for hikers but it offers a lot more than that. The clear pools of the rivers Hutt and Pakuratahi are great for swimming and the river-side of Pakuratahi is a camp-able location. Campfires and barbecues are permitted here. For Rafters and Kayakers, the Hutt River Gorge is a challenging stretch of rapids.
Safari at Fur Seal Colony
An hour's walk past Red Rock Coast is a place where the endangered species of fur seals have formed their winter colony. Don’t miss out on an exciting opportunity to watch the seals hunt and bask in the winter sun while also taking a thrilling safari on the powerful off-road 4WDs. The Safari explores most of Red Rocks and the Brooklyn Wind Turbine region. The guided tour will help you understand the fur seals and their habitat in great depth. The safari is available every day and there are two batches, one in the morning and one in the afternoon.
Take Part in Food and Wine Festivals
The most energetic season is undoubtedly summer, when the Wellington Food, Wine and Beer Festival takes place. So you may want to grab the opportunity and get those tickets before they sell out. The festival presents food from the top restaurants in Wellington and a staggering display of local and international beverages. With wine and beer from the finest vineyards and breweries in Wellington accompanied by live music performed by enigmatic bands, the event is one that shouldn't be missed.