Guide12 Hours Wellington
Wellington is well-known for its quirky, colourful streets, its love of fashion and events, and its bustling hospitality scene. Here's how to spend 12 hours in the capital city.
The neatest things to see, eat, and do.
The neatest things to see, eat, and do: From the harbourside markets to cosy eateries and hole-in-the-wall bars, this city encompasses the melting pot of students, workers, tourists, and creatives.
14 Jessie Street, Te Aro
Start the day the right way with excellent coffee and simple but perfectly executed food at popular brunch spot, Prefab. There’s a reason this place is constantly heaving; the service is efficient and the food is fast, fresh, and delicious. Simply put, this place is outstanding and has settled in as a longstanding Wellington favourite.
Moore Wilson's Tory Street
Corner of Tory Street and, College Street, Te Aro
Head just around the corner onto Tory Street and pay a visit to Moore Wilson’s, Wellington’s ultimate supermarket. Visiting a supermarket might seem like the last thing you want to do on an outing, but with a huge selection of artisan and specialty products, Moore Wilson’s is the perfect spot to stock up on supplies.
Following that, why not head to the capital’s waterfront and check out Wellington’s excellent City Gallery. Established in 1980, it’s the country’s most significant non-collecting gallery and features an ever-changing line up of exhibitions of contemporary art.
5 Eva Street, Te Aro
End the morning in Wellington’s coolest precinct, the Hannah Factory Laneway, just off Dixon Street. There’s been a rejuvenation of this once-forgotten part of town thanks to the arrival of small artisan food producers. Check out and sample goods from Wellington Chocolate Factory, the Fix & Fogg window for small-batch produced peanut butter, and Leeds Street Bakery for beautiful bread.
35 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro
With a slightly heavier bag courtesy of local chocolate, peanut butter, and carbs, the lush goodies found on Ghuznee Street will only add to the load. Spend some time modelling locally-made garments from emerging New Zealand designers in the changing rooms of Twenty Seven Names, ENA, and Caughley. Next door, browse through Precinct 35’s beautiful selection of local and international homewares (yes, of course you need that cute new bowl for your porridge) with a coffee courtesy of their roommates at Milk Crate.
Customs by Coffee Supreme
39 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro
After all that hard labour spent in the capital’s loveliest boutique stores, it’s time for yet another caffeine hit – and Ghuznee Street just so happens to be Wellington’s coffee precinct. How convenient. Supreme Coffee’s café Customs is the coolest spot to enjoy some seriously great filter and espresso coffee, matched with their lunchtime toast of the moment and finished off with a trendy Little Dough Co. doughnut. Ah, that’s better, isn’t it?
Enjoy Contemporary Art Space
211 Left Bank, Te Aro
Make the most of Welly’s art scene and retreat inside Enjoy Contemporary Art Space, a bright and clean gallery tucked away on Cuba Street. The two inviting exhibition spaces are continually refreshed with new art from emerging and established talents and a well-stocked library offers visitors plenty of interesting art and culture reads.
110 a Cuba Street, Te Aro
Ready for a breather? Escape into Wellington Apothecary’s serene home and let’s get you kitted out with a range of herbal remedies. From small-batch botanical tonics, soothing teas, natural skincare, and medicines, these herbalists have all the oils, creams, and infusions to have you looking and feeling your healthiest.
By now, you’re likely feeling a little parched. Welly’s hills will do that to you. Take a late afternoon saunter along Aro Valley and duck into Garage Project’s latest new taproom, 91 Aro. Choose from around 20 rotating craft beers on tap, their greatest releases canned or bottled, a cellar range (for extra special occasions) and their natural wine selection. After just a couple (and perhaps a plate of cheese melts or pork crackling) you’ll have a taste of Garage Project. Luckily, their brewery is just across the street so you can fill up on some brews to takeaway.
Egmont Street Eatery
11 Egmont Street, Te Aro
In a town mad about hospitality, Wellington makes it pretty damn difficult to decide where to head for dinner. We’ll make it easy for you. Elusively tucked away off one of Wellington’s coolest lanes, Egmont Street Bakery is a super slick restaurant serving up a show-stopping banquet of fresh, seasonal, and local goods to share – or not. The menu is not only incredibly tasty (no doubt you’ll be ordering another round of baked mushrooms in duck fat) but has a sustainable and zero-waste philosophy. The whole animal or vegetable is put to good use, fish is sustainably longline caught, and almost everything is made in-house. Okay, enough chat. Dig in!
60 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro
Puffin is an extravagant speak-easy style wine bar and the perfect setting to converse about the days’ adventures with your favourite people. Slip into a plush velvet booth and while the rest of the night away over a selection of natural and organic vino (or a classic cocktail or beer if you so wish). Oh – and say hi to that cheeky taxidermy peacock for us.