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Our most recommended things to do in Wellington

Wellington: Wētā Workshop Experience and Guided Tour

1. Wellington: Wētā Workshop Experience and Guided Tour

Visit Wellington's Wētā Workshop and step into a world of magical creativity. Learn about how special effects and props and designed and made for film and TV on a guided tour of the Wētā Cave. Meet your guide at the Wētā Cave store to begin your journey through the world of Wētā Workshop, one of the film industry’s premier special effects companies, located in the heart of Wellington’s Miramar peninsula. From The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit to Avatar and District 9, learn about props, costumes, and creatures were created for your favorite films. Check out cool stuff from the creative departments and catch an artist at work on the tour stage.

Wellington: Return Cable Car Ticket

2. Wellington: Return Cable Car Ticket

Follow the Cable Car signpost around Lambton Quay to find the hidden Cable Car Lane in the heart of the city centre.  Wellington's iconic Cable Car travels through three historic tunnels and over three bridges. There are three intermediate stations; the residential areas of Clifton, Talavera and Salamanca. Victoria University of Wellington and Kelburn Park Fountain can be accessed from the Salamanca Station. Enjoy the panoramic views of Wellington city and the harbor from the top of the Cable Car. To get back down into the city, there are several walks through the hillsides of the Botanic Garden, including a beautiful 40-minute stroll back down to the city centre via the historic Bolton Street Cemetery and the Beehive. Or if you prefer an easier route back down, choose the return journey option. This allows you plenty of time to enjoy the views and explore the surrounding attractions at the summit before heading back.

Wellington: Lord of the Rings Tour with Weta Workshop

3. Wellington: Lord of the Rings Tour with Weta Workshop

Are you ready for a fantastic adventure in Wellington, New Zealand's capital and the home of Middle-earth? Visit some of the most amazing locations from the Lord of the Rings movies and the famous Weta Workshop where the films were made, with our experienced and highly knowledgeable guides with decades of experience between them. After picking you up from the Cruise Terminal or one of our several convenient Wellington City locations, you will start your journey by seeing the Embassy Cinema and learning about the extraordinary World Premieres of The Return of the King and An Unexpected Journey. Then, ascend to the Mt Victoria lookout, where you will enjoy a breathtaking view of the city and the harbour. You will then descend into the forested slopes of the nearby Outer Shire, where our expert guides will explain the process of film making and entertain you with stories of how the Lord of the Rings movies were brought to life. You will follow in the footsteps of Frodo and the Hobbits as they began their quest to destroy the One Ring. You will see the places where they encountered mushrooms and Black Riders before the "get off the road" and flee to the Buckleberry Ferry. You will have the chance to recreate some of the most famous scenes from The Fellowship of the Ring and make your social media streams go crazy! Next, you head to the Miramar Peninsula and the film-making Mecca of Wellywood. This is the home of the famous Weta Workshop. Here you will discover the secrets behind movie-making magic and learn how the props, costumes, weapons and creatures were brought to life by the talented artists at Weta. You will have the chance to take photos with some of the iconic characters from the middle-Earth movies and pick up a souvenir or two, if desired. You will then enjoy a scenic coastal drive back to the City before being dropped of back at your pick-up location. This tour is a must-do for any middle-Earth fan short on time and anyone who wants a glimpse into how films are made or wants to make family and friends with an iconic photo. Book your spot today and join us on this unforgettable journey!

Zealandia by Day Tour

4. Zealandia by Day Tour

Discover New Zealand’s native wildlife on an immersive 2-hour guided walking tour at Zealandia Ecosanctuary. Located 10-minutes from Wellington CBD, the fully-fenced, predator-free ecosanctuary is home to some of the world’s most extraordinary and vulnerable animals.  Zealandia can be easily reached by car, free shuttle, or cable car from Wellington CBD. Check in at the vistor center ticket desk where you will meet your guide. Begin with introduction in the ecosanctuary’s exhibition. You will complete a short bio-security bag check before you can enter the sanctuary. This is to prevent any predators from entering the sanctuary with you. Then, venture out into the sanctuary to discovery the riches of our native flora and fauna at its very best.  Make the most of your visit with your expert guide, who will share with you the history, sights and sounds of the forest and its secrets. Witness the highly intelligent kākā (bush parrot), kakariki, tūī and bellbirds at feeding stations positioned along the sanctuary’s walkways. After 2 hours exploring the vast parklands, you will return to the visitor center. Relax after your tour with a coffee or meal at Cafe Rata. 

Wellington: Lord of the Rings & Weta Workshop Full-Day Tour

5. Wellington: Lord of the Rings & Weta Workshop Full-Day Tour

After pickup from the Cruise Terminal or one of several easy Wellington City locations, you will start your journey with one of our knowledgeable guides who have decades of experience between them. See the Embassy Cinema and learn about the amazing World Premieres held here. Then, ascend to the Mt Victoria lookout, where you will enjoy a stunning view of the city and harbour. Then descend into the forested slopes of the nearby Outer Shire to follow in the footsteps of Frodo and the Hobbits as they began their quest to destroy the One Ring. See where they encountered mushrooms and Black Riders before they "get off the road" and flee to the Buckleberry Ferry. You can recreate some of the most famous scenes from The Fellowship of the Ring and make your social media streams go crazy! Next is the famous Weta Workshop to enjoy a behind-the-scenes tour in a specially designed, top secret tour space. A Weta artist will share the secrets behind filmmaking and explain how the props, costumes and weapons were created. Snap photos with some iconic characters from middle-Earth and pick up a souvenir or two, if desired. After this, you venture towards the River Anduin where the Fellowship travelled to the Falls of Rauros after leaving Lothlorien. Then, you will enjoy a delicious hobbit-themed lunch where you can feast on some traditional hobbit fare to refresh your stamina for the journey ahead. All dietary requirements can be catered for, but please advise when booking. After lunch, you will drive to Kaitoke Regional Park - a stunning temperate rain forest and setting for Rivendell. Immerse yourself in the magical location and learn how the area was transformed into Elrond's house, Frodo's bedroom and more. Reenact a famous Legolas image and then recreate the scene where Frodo leads the newly formed Fellowship towards Mordor by posing in front of the Rivendell gate tower which is the only LOTR replica structure in the whole country outside of Hobbiton. You also see a scene from the start of The Two Towers and have a chance to cross a swing bridge and visit a giant 800-year-old native Rimu tree and learn about NZ's flora and fauna. Finally, you will visit the Gardens of Isengard and see where Gandalf rode to meet Saruman after discovering Frodo had the One Ring and where the wizards walked through the beautiful gardens before they were destroyed. This is also the location where the Orcs began felling Fangorn Forest. On the journey home, we pass by Dry Creek Quarry, that was used for Helm's Deep and Minas Tirith. This is now a working quarry so we are not allowed access, but your guide will share stories and photos as you see it from the road. You will then be returned to your pickup location full of information and stories that will make your friends and family jealous. This tour is a must-do for any fan and those who want to enjoy some of the most beautiful places in the Wellington region. Book today and join us on this unforgettable journey!

Wellington and Picton: Interislander Ferry

6. Wellington and Picton: Interislander Ferry

For over 6o years, Interislander has been sharing the stunning scenery of Wellington Harbour and the breathtaking Marlborough Sounds with over 800,000 passengers every year. The voyage between the North and South Islands of Aotearoa New Zealand, takes just over three hours and has been described as one of the most beautiful ferry journeys in the world and is a ‘must do’ experience for everyone exploring our stunning country. Once onboard enjoy a meal, drink in our bar, stroll the decks, watch a movie or relax in our Premium Lounge. Our three spacious and comfortable Interislander ferries - Kaitaki, Aratere and Kaiarahi - cross the Cook Strait at regular times, 7 days a week, all year round.

Wellington: Guided Sightseeing Tour by Electric Bike

7. Wellington: Guided Sightseeing Tour by Electric Bike

Get to know Wellington like a local on this electric bike tour. Your guide will take you off the beaten path and show you the best places to snack and shop. Glide along the beach and enjoy panoramic views from a lookout point. Meet your guide at Queens Wharf in Central Wellington for a morning departure. After listening to the safety briefing, learn how to operate your electric bike and enjoy time practicing in a safe area before heading out. Once you’re feeling comfortable, saddle up for a fun bike tour of Wellington, and follow your guide along the Wellington Waterfront. Glide along the seafront, passing the lively port and harbor, and the beaches of Oriental Bay. Continue along the Miramar Peninsula and leave the bustle of the city behind as you cycle along the scenic coast. Pause along the way at a local café, where you’ll have the chance to enjoy a complimentary tea or coffee, and purchase sandwiches and cakes at your own expense. Afterward, loop back towards the city. Finally, climb up to the lookout point for an unforgettable view over Wellington, the Miramar Peninsula, and the ocean. Your tour ends in the early afternoon back in central Wellington.

Wellington: Half Day Seal Coast Safari

8. Wellington: Half Day Seal Coast Safari

Starting in central Wellington, we will pick you up in our exclusive 4WD Mercedes vans that offer the best in safety and comfort. We begin our journey at Otari-Wilton’s Bush - 100 hectares of ancient and regenerating forest and NZ’s only botanical garden dedicated solely to native plants. Designated a 6-star Garden of International Significance by the NZ Gardens Trust of the Royal New Zealand Institute of Horticulture, Otari-Wilton’s Bush let's us introduce you to what the landscape of New Zealand was like for early Maori and European settlers. Walking across the skybridge, you will be treated to views across the canopy while your friendly and knowledgeable guide describes the unique flora and fauna endemic to this country and the challenges they have faced to survive. We regularly see beautiful native birds like Tui, Kaka, Kakariki, Kereru and, occasionally, Karearea, all of which were extinct or endangered in the Wellington region only 25 years ago. Next, we head towards the south coast. Turning off the main road, we utilise our private access through Terawhiti Station, one of the oldest and largest stations in New Zealand. We’ll likely see sheep, cows and goats on the drive up the hill, before finding stunning views across the Cook Strait, Kaikoura Ranges and the South Island once we reach the top. the This area is now home to the Capital Kiwi project, which has recently reintroduced wild Kiwi a full 100-years since they were last seen and heard in the hills. We then follow the ridgeline road that was created for the imposing Project West Wind – a wind farm that generates enough electricity to power all the houses in the Wellington region. This city is known as Windy Welly for a reason! Your guide will explain how this collaboration was essential in keeping the farming operation going in what are challenging and harsh conditions and added another chapter to the long, storied history of Terawhiti. Once we begin the descent towards sea-level, appearing in the distance will be the Karori rock lighthouse, which is more commonly known as the ‘leaning lighthouse’. One of New Zealand's first automated lighthouses and, yes, it does lean! You’ll see for yourself once we reach the coast and traverse the rocky, sandy track towards Tongue Point and the colony of native Fur Seals. Wander the beach to observe these cute creatures in their natural habitat as they sunbathe, play and swim. Staying at a safe distance [for their safety and ours], your guide will talk about the history, ecology and conservation which has allowed their numbers to flourish once again. We’ll treat you to some light refreshments as you take photos and watch the ferries crossing between New Zealand’s main two islands. More stories will abound on the return journey over farmland and fault lines while soaking in those amazing views all over again. Upon arrival back in central Wellington, we’ll leave you to reflect on your experience to an area that even many locals don’t know about.

New Zealand: eSIM Mobile Data Plan

9. New Zealand: eSIM Mobile Data Plan

Make your trip to New Zealand hassle-free with a convenient eSIM data package. Stay connected on your travels with high-speed coverage in New Zealand. Purchase and install your eSIM anytime and anywhere. Choose from a variety of data packages, validity options, and coverage in additional countries. Simply scan the eSIM QR code to access all your essential apps on your trip. Avoid the trouble of managing multiple SIMs with this zero-waste solution. Get one eSIM per device and, if needed, top-up by simply buying and activating additional eSIM plans as you go. Once activated, your coverage will begin immediately according to your selected duration. All iPhone model launched beyond iPhone XS can support eSIM. For Android, if you are unsure, please check with the guideline photo for eligibility. If you can not connect to the internet after install this eSIM, please follow the Self Help Troubleshooting Guide in your GYG voucher. APN (Access Point Name): 3gnet Local operator info: New Zealand: 2Degrees Australia: Optus

Museum of NZ Te Papa Tongarewa: Gallipoli Early Entry Ticket

10. Museum of NZ Te Papa Tongarewa: Gallipoli Early Entry Ticket

Avoid the crowds and enter the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa before it opens to the public at 10:00 AM, and access the "Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War" exhibition to learn more about one of the major campaigns of World War I. Get a short introduction from a knowledgeable guide, and then explore at your own pace. Combining the world of museums with the world-class creative artistry of Weta Workshop, the ground-breaking exhibition tells the story through the eyes and words of eight ordinary New Zealanders who found themselves in extraordinary circumstances.  Learn all about the giant sculptures that took a staggering 24,000 hours to create. Encounter 3D maps and projections, miniatures, models, dioramas, and a range of interactive experiences that will bring New Zealand's Gallipoli story to life. Then, use your entry ticket to explore the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa's vast collections at leisure.

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What people are saying about Wellington

Overall rating

(607 reviews)

We had a fabulous day on this tour. The Weta Workahop tour was interesting and well done. After that our guide, Robbie, drove us to many sites where LOTR scenes had been filmed, and showed pictures from those scenes for comparison. Robbie was an extra in all 3 films and had lots of great stories about his experiences. We had lunch in a pretty cafe, too. All-in-all the tour was a highlight of our time in New Zealand!

Our tour guide Juli was very nice. Small-ish group of 8 and Juli was able to accommodate & connect with each of the couples/ family. Was supposed to be a 2 hour guide ended up being 2.5hours. Her tour was very engaging. Was lucky to see quite a number of birds & even interacted with a few robins. 100% recommend as a midday activity.

The bikes were simple and easy to ride. Our guide was exceptional in his knowledge of history and culture of Wellington making this a very informative and interesting tour.

This was a great excursion! Beautiful views and great history and conversation. I highly recommend.

Our tour guide Blue was fantastic, very friendly and knowledgeable