Wellington Life and Travel Tips
(Wellington, North Island, New Zealand NZ)
Wellington, the most important city on New Zealand's North Island, is a popular destination for tourists and comes with a densely populated, compact city centre ideal for walking and getting about. The city of Wellington is a vibrant location at any time of the year and is located on the south-western corner of the North Island, with easy access to the nearby South Island.
Home to subtropical weather, major tourist attractions, countless heritage buildings and plenty of seasonal activities, the New Zealand capital attracts people from throughout the country, as well as 'nearby' Australia and the rest of the world. Flights here from Europe can take more than 20 hours and will require a stop-off, so that the plane can re-fuel.
Tourism and Tourist Information
Wellington Tourist Information Centre
Address: Cable Car Lane, City, Wellington, North Island, 6001, New Zealand NZ
Tel: +64 (0)4 473 3753
Situated nearby the Lambton Quay, the city's Tourist Information Centre is operated by the New Zealand Post and provides a wealth of detailed leaflets, maps, festival details and travel tips.
Open hours: Monday to Friday - 08:30 to 17:30, Saturday and Sunday - 09:00 to 17:00.
Wellington Visitors' Information Centre
Address: City Council Buildings, 101 Wakefield Street, Wellington, North Island, 6001, New Zealand NZ
Tel: +64 (0)4 802 4860
The centrally located Visitors' Information Centre stands close to Cuba Street, where it is well-stocked with comprehensive tourist advice.
Open hours: Monday, Wednesday to Friday - 08:30 to 17:30, Tuesday - 08:30 to 17:00, Saturday and Sunday - 09:30 to 17:30
Wellington is a fairly safe area of New Zealand and crime levels generally remain low. Tourists visiting the capital do not need to take extra precautions against crime or theft, although being careful with any hand baggage, handbags and money is advisable. It is also sensible to avoid leaving valuables in parked cars.
Places of Worship
The capital city of Wellington is home to numerous cultures and religious beliefs. Most major religions are present around the North Island of New Zealand, with many of the locals being at least nominally Christian in their belief. The spectacular St. Paul's Cathedral in the Thorndon district is the largest cathedral in New Zealand, with striking Gothic-style architecture.
Pharmacies and Chemists
Pharmacies and chemist shops in Wellington are easy to find and are operated by a number of leading pharmaceutical chains. Most local pharmacies are usually open during normal business hours, while some also offer an after-hours emergency service and dispense prescriptions, medicines and a host of other useful products, such as cosmetics, beauty products, souvenirs, postcards and cold snack foods.
English is the main spoken language in Wellington and throughout both the North Island and South Island, although a large number of nationalities and ethnic cultures are well represented in this extremely diverse city. Whilst New Zealand accents may be fairly strong at times, they are generally easy to understand.
Maori is the second official language in New Zealand and travellers are not expected to speak any Maori, although it can help to know several basic words and phrases, such as ' Kia ora' (hello) and 'Ka pai' (thank you).
Tipping at Wellington's hotels and restaurants is not usually customary, although it has recently started to become a more common practice to tip for exceptional service. Only at the most exclusive restaurants will you be automatically expected to show your gratitude by tipping, which is generally around ten percent.
Smoking in Wellington is not permitted at the airport, on flights, in any public building, in restaurants and cafés, at sporting arenas and on all types of public transportation. Before smoking, it is sensible to ask those nearby before lighting up, in case there are any objections or restrictions.