There are many great attractions near the airport. Don’t miss out on some of these fun things to do when you are staying at one of the Wellington Airport hotels.
Te Papa Tongarewa (Museum of New Zealand)
Distance from Wellington Airport: 7.2 km
Te Papa Tongarewa
Location Downtown Wellington
Phone Number 04 381 7000 Friday to Wednesday 10am – 6pm
Thursdays 10am – 9pm.
An Introductory Te Papa Tour provides an overview of the Museum in 45 minutes, and runs daily at 10.15am and 2pm, more frequently during the high season (November to April).
Te Papa is New Zealand’s national museum, offering visitors a unique and authentic experience of this country’s treasures and stories. Prepare to be engaged, stimulated, and surprised! At the heart of Te Papa are the stunning long-term exhibitions. They are enhanced by diverse short-term exhibitions and a captivating and distinctive events program – performances, talks, lectures, entertainments, and more.
The Original Settlers of Wellington: The Maori PeopleDistance from Wellington Airport: 8.5 km
Maori people define themselves by their iwi (tribe), hapu (sub-tribe), maunga (mountain) and awa (river). Whanau is the name given to family – the term embraces immediate family, in-laws and all those connected by blood ties.
In recent years, the introduction of Maori language nests (kohanga reo) has revived the Maori language. At kohanga reo, preschool children are encouraged to speak in Maori. Primary and secondary schools build on this early immersion by including Maori in the curriculum.
Mount VictoriaDistance from Wellington Airport: 6.5 km
Address: Top of Mt Victoria
Location City Suburbs
+64 0(4) 802 4860
Free of charge
High lookout point along Wellington’s Southern Walkway gives visitors a spectacular view of the city and its surroundings.
Parliament Buildings Beehive Parliamentary House and LibraryDistance from Wellington Airport: 10.6 km
Corner Lambton Quay and Molesworth Streets
04 471 9503
Weekday hours: 10 am to 4 pm (last tours depart at 4 pm), Weekend hours: Saturdays 10 – 3 pm, Sundays 12 – 3 pm (last tours depart at 3 pm), Closed: New Year’s Day & 2 January, Waitangi Day, Good Friday, Christmas & Boxing Day. Private tours (10 or more) can be pre-booked by arrangement. Free guided tours leave on the hour.
A visit to the Capital City would not be complete without a visit to New Zealand’s beautifully refurbished Parliament Buildings. Located in the historic suburb of Thorndon, the complex is made up of three architecturally distinctive buildings: the Edwardian neo-classical Parliament House, the Victorian Gothic Parliamentary Library and the unique 1970’s style Beehive building. Free entry. These buildings are a prime example of New Zealand art and an outlet to the world of politics in Wellington.
Katherine Mansfield BirthplaceDistance from Wellington Airport: 10.2 km
25 Tinakori Road
Thorndon , Wellington
Location City Suburbs
04 473 7268 04 473-7268
Open Daily (except Monday) 10am-4pm. Closed Mondays, Christmas Day, Good Friday.
The childhood home of New Zealand’s most celebrated author and one of the world’s best-known short story writers. Nestled on historic Tinakori Road, the exquisitely restored house and the heritage garden provide an excellent background to Mansfield’s writing and give a unique opportunity to experience New Zealand society of the time. (Number 1 in the Thorndon Heritage Trail).
Museum of Wellington City & SeaDistance from Wellington Airport:
Located in downtown Wellington at “The Bond Store”, In front of Queen’s Wharf
Open Monday to Sunday 10am – 5pm
Closed Christmas Day
04 472 8904
The restored Historic Places Trust Category One building, originally an 1892 Bond Store (customs house), utilizes traditional museum techniques combined with holographic special effects, re-creations, interactive exhibits, and a giant cinema screen to take visitors on a journey through Wellington’s past, present and future. The heritage of Wellington is displayed through exhibits that cover the city’s Maori roots to its modern times. Tours available.
Distance from Wellington Airport: 8.0 km
200 Daniell Street
04 381 6755
New Zealand’s oldest Zoo, Wellington Zoo offers unique experiences in an interactive and exciting environment of conservation, learning and fun.
Book a “Close Encounter” and interact with Tigers, Lions, Red Pandas, Giraffes and many other engaging animals.
Founded in 1906, Wellington’s zoological gardens have all the traditional attractions. Zoo management has recently extended and upgraded the facilities to include such features as the Tropical River Trail, New Zealand’s newest and largest habitat exhibit. Zoo inhabitants include New Zealand natives such as the kiwi, the giant weta, the black stilt and the tuatara, as well as the more exotic species such as the North American bison, the Nepalese red panda and the Sitatunga antelope.
Zealandia – Karori Wildlife SanctuaryDistance from Wellington Airport: 10.9 km
At the End of Waiapu Road
Karori, Wellington in the City Suburbs
04 920 2222 or 04 920 9200
Open every day (except Christmas Day) from 10am to 5pm (or 10am to 4pm on weekdays during April to Nov). Visitor Centre is at the end of Waiapu Road, Karori (first left after the Karori tunnel). Waiapu Road junction is on Bus routes 12, 17, 18, 21, 22 and 23.
The Sanctuary is a world first conservation attraction where a unique protected natural area is being faithfully restored. Some of New Zealand’s rarest and most endangered wildlife has been released inside the Sanctuary such as the little spotted kiwi, saddleback, stitchbird and kaka.
Take a leisurely stroll around natural bush, lakes and historical buildings or book a guided tour during the day or night. You can walk across a unique historic dam, see a 19th century goldmine carved deep into the hillside, and take a scenic ride on an electric boat or picnic on the lawns by the wetlands.
The Karori Wildlife Sanctuary is an ambitious 250 hectare project intended to restore and protect native flora and fauna within the city environment. A ground-breaking fence to deter predators has been especially designed and constructed and a weka breeding program is well established. Kiwis were recently released in the area. The secluded inner city valley will eventually incorporate educational facilities and a network of tracks.
Lyall BayDistance from Wellington Airport: 2.3 km
+64 4 802 4860
If riding waves by board, or just jumping in them is what you like, then this is the beach for you. With a breakwater at one end to create waves for riding, rocks at the other end for clambering over and safe swimming in between, this beach will keep you amused for hours. Watch the ferries pass by while you relax on the white sand.