Blog4NZ: Three Budget Activities to See the Best Of Wellington

Posted by on Dec 14, 2010 in Guest Posts, Uncategorized | 16 comments

Originally posted as a guest post from Kerry-Ann I am featuring this post again as my contribution to Blog4NZ.

This is a guest post from Kerry-Ann, my friend and fellow travel blogger at Audacious Freedom. Thank you Kerry-Ann, for being a guest poster here at Budget Travelers Sandbox.

Experience the best of Wellington on a low budget…

On the southern point of the North Island tucked between a dramatic harbour and bush clad mountains you will find Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city. One of Wellington’s unique characteristics is its compact CBD. This means those all important activities such as shopping, eating, cultural activities and relaxing on the beach are within walking distance of each other. It is this characteristic that allows Wellington to combine city life with wildlife adventures.

1. Enjoy the spectacular harbour

Waterfront walk way along Oriental Bay

On a calm day hire a kayak and head out into the harbour. This is the best way to experience the full beauty of Wellington. Soak up the cityscape and dramatic mountain while watching out for unexpected visitors and you may just see a little blue penguin, stingray or an octopus. If you choose to go kayaking don’t arrive in denims they won’t let you out! If you prefer staying on dry land, take a stroll along the waterfront. From Oriental Bay you will get awesome views of the city. If the numbing of your body in the sea (which locals call swimming) isn’t appealing then across the road is a shop full of delicious creamy Italian ice cream to cool yourself down with instead.

2. Ride the Cable car to the top of the Botanical Garden

Wellington Cable Car

For those who love views, catch the Cable Car from the bustling business precinct to the top entrance of the botanical garden. At the summit nosey around the Cable Car museum before walking over to the lookout point and taking in the stunning views. If you are not in a rush, take a wander through the Botanical Garden – it is free. Enjoy the nature trails, the herb garden, the duck pond and the rose garden. If all this walking has tired you out then stop for a drink at the cafe in the Rose Garden and savour the atmosphere. This is also a good place to find those much needed toilets! From the Rose Garden back to the business precinct is a 10 minute walk.

3. Exploring New Zealand’s cultural diversity

Te Papa: Level 4 Espresso Cafe

Don’t miss the most popular and biggest museum, Te Papa. It is free (though donations are appreciated) to explore this fascinating building that houses the country’s most precious treasures. The imaginative (and sometimes cheeky) exhibitions tell of New Zealand’s diverse history, bringing the stories to life through interactive exhibits and technology. If you feeling peckish there is a well stocked, busy cafe on the ground floor or if you looking for somewhere quiet to relax with a drink and something sweet to eat then head up to the Espresso Cafe on level. Let Wellington, voted the coolest little capital in the world by the Lonely Planet, captivate you with its ability to combine fine dining, shopping, cultural events, galleries and history with the simple pleasures of a seaside paradise. Wellington knows how to steal hearts and before long you could be dreaming of living here too…

Kerry-Ann’s Bio:

Kerry-ann Edge: I am an entrepreneur, Internet Marketer, foreigner,
traveler, hybrid-nomad, and home maker. My blog Audacious Freedom
( is a diary of the highs and lows, the
personal growth, challenges, obstacles and triumphs I have had, as I
have learned to be flexible and adapt to life on the move, from
traveling to international relocations.


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  1. Very well reported, indeed. I can recommend Wellington and the whole of New Zealand from north to south, which I know from two quite recent trips. It’s one of my top favourite countries in the world, with its beautiful scenery, wonderful food and incredibly friendly people. (Also has the cleanest restrooms in the world…)

    • Graeme, I spent 10 days in NZ many, many years ago. I loved what I saw, and have always said I will go back. With all the new places I want to see, and the ones I want to return to I need to clone myself!

  2. Great list! Used to live on Oriental Parade – magic! On a fine day Wellington is one of the most beautiful places in the world!

  3. Oriental Bay looks like a fun place to relax

  4. Ok – I’ve got to go to Wellington! Great post. That cable car ride looks like so much fun, too!

    • I’m from a coastal city (Halifax, Nova Scotia), so Wellington really appeals to me. I love cable car rides.

  5. I love the water!

  6. I am surprised that’s Wellington. It reminds me more of San Sebastian in Spain.

  7. Oh wow! That cable car ride is great! Definitely a good way to see the stunning views of the city….:) Thanks Kerry and Nancie for sharing…:) x

  8. The Cable Car looks great!

  9. Wait a cable car that takes you up to a Botanical garden? Sign me up!

  10. An amazing country and so easy to travel solo. I had a great time there.

  11. Great rundown. We only spent a few days in Wellington, and unfortunately it rained the entire time, but we still had a great experience. The Te Papa museum was super cool, and I am not a museum person at all. We spent hours exploring its many great exhibits. And we also loved the food in Wellington. We found some great Indian food, and even some Mexican, which we had been sorely missing.

  12. I have never been to NZ but now I am curious. It looks like a beautiful place with a lot to do!

  13. Great Wellington summary! The botanic garden and the harbour were my favourite place to just relax and enjoy my time. Not far from downtown in the coast, there’s a spot called Red Rock which is a home for a seal (or was it fur seal?) colony. It’s an awesome place to visit. No fees, but I think you need to drive there yourself.


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