Get the Finder app 🥳

Track your credit score

Free

Things to do in Wellington in 2020

Find out the best things to do while visiting the capital of New Zealand.

Updated . What changed?

Fact checked
City and harbour from Mt. Victoria Lookout.

We’re committed to our readers and editorial independence. We don’t compare all products in the market and may receive compensation when we refer you to our partners, but this does not influence our opinions or reviews. Learn more about Finder.

New Zealand's capital offers both locals and visitors alike a long list of activities to keep them busy when in the area. From vineyard tours, museums hopping and exploring hidden gems, see all of our top recommendations for things to keep you busy while in Wellington.

Top things to do in Wellington

1. Ride the Wellington Cable Car

Take a scenic journey on New Zealand's only operating funicular railway. The ride is short, starting in Wellington CBD and goes up towards the Kelburn Lookout. When you reach the top, there are plenty of worthy sites to explore including the Botanic Gardens, Mount Victoria, Space Place and Zealandia. You can take the cable car back down to Wellington CBD or take the 40-minute scenic stroll back down.

Our top pick:


2. Visit filming locations from The Lord of the Rings

Book a day tour that will take you to famous locations in Wellington from The Lord of the Rings and get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of the making of the trilogy. You'll visit sites like Weta Workshop where props were made for the films and dig into a Lord of the Rings themed lunch at Scorch-O-Rama cafe.

Our top pick:


Things to do in Wellington during the day

3. Make your way to Wellington's many museums

One thing Wellington definitely isn't short on is museums. History and culture buffs will be delighted to know there are multitudes of places to learn about history, art and space in Wellington. Te Papa, also known as the Museum of New Zealand, stands out as the most popular museum in the region. If you're short on time, you can take a guided tour around the museum, but if you have time to roam around, you're free to take a guided tour and stick around afterwards for as long as you like to explore the exhibitions.

Our top pick:


4. Discover Wellington's tastiest laneways

It's no secret Wellington is a hot spot for foodies, but if you want to know which cafes and restaurants the locals rate, a food tour should be on your radar.

Our top pick:


5. Set off on a wine tour

Wellington is one of the best wine regions in New Zealand. Just an hour away from the city centre, you'll find Martinborough, which is home to award-winning vineyards. You can take a guided tour to Martinborough to try locally produced wine and local gourmet cuisine. A wine tour is the perfect activity for friends or partners to have fun and relax among the fresh country air with an award-winning glass of wine in hand.

Our top pick:


Things to do in Wellington with kids

6. Explore the planets at Space Place

Space Place is filled with interactive exhibits and galleries that will mesmerise kids (and big kids). Explore the universe by day then look through the historic Thomas Cooke telescope by night to see the stars and planets.

Our top pick:


7. Beach hop your way along the coastline

There are over 46 kilometres of beaches spanning across Wellington. One of the closest to the city is Oriental Beach, offering a relaxing place to swim and bask in the sun. Lyall Bay also comes highly recommended. It's a great surfing beach and has a number of eateries nearby that are worth a visit. A tour along the coast of Wellington will take you to multiple beaches and you may even spot some seals along the way.

Our top pick:


Things to do in Wellington at night

8. Take a night tour of Zealandia

Zealandia is a wildlife sanctuary that protects New Zealand's endangered species and preserves Wellington's landscape. Spanning over 225 hectares, explore the urban sanctuary at night by torchlight with a guide.

Our top pick:


Free things to do in Wellington

Food in Wellington

9. Browse the markets

One of the many things Wellington does well is its markets. Some of the best are located centrally, so if you have some time to spare before your next adventure or you're keen to make a day of it, you're sure to find time to visit a market during your trip. Wellington Market, Harbourside Market and Wellington Night Market are local favourites. It's free to browse, but you'll likely give in to temptation when you see the display of food available across the stalls.


Wellington Botanic Garden

10. Stroll through Wellington Botanic Garden

Wellington Botanic Garden is a few minutes from Wellington CBD and can be reached by travelling on the Wellington Cable Car. You'll find some of New Zealand's oldest exotic trees, large garden sculptures, a duck pond, herb garden and a cafe filling some of the 64 acres. Visitors can explore the Wellington Botanic Garden from sunrise to sunset daily.


See the latest Wellington experience deals

Viator Viator

Things to do in New Zealand from $9.46

Available on select dates in 2020 and 2021 in Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin, Wellington and more. Activities include day tours, flight experiences, transfers, bike hires, attraction passes and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

AAT Kings AAT Kings

Up to 2.5% off 2+ holiday bookings + Extra 10% off day tours

Available on select dates until 2021 across Australia and New Zealand when you purchase at the same time. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Topdeck Topdeck

Up to 10% off multi-trips worldwide

Available for travel on select dates in December 2020 onward. Discount applies when booking three trips at once. Extra 5% off for bookings of four trips and more. Destinations include Balkan, Ireland, Britain, Thailand, Canada, Egypt, Japan, South Africa, Athens and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Trip.com Trip.com

Up to 5% off tours and attractions tickets worldwide

Available in select cities in China, Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong, Singapore, Tokyo, South Korea, Macao, Dubai, Paris, Taipei and London.

Last verified

Viator Viator

Things to do in New Zealand from $9.46

Available on select dates in 2020 and 2021 in Auckland, Wellington, Dunedin, Wellington and more. Activities include day tours, flight experiences, transfers, bike hires, attraction passes and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified


More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site