Ensconced as it is between the mountains and the sea, the city is blessed with natural wonders on all sides – but there are also myriad Wellington parks to admire within the metropolis itself. This makes it the ideal holiday destination if you’re yearning to get back to nature.
From towering mountain hikes to walking trails in the many verdant parks that dot the city, you’ll have a hard time narrowing down which outdoor haven to explore first. Whether you prefer tame gardens or rugged wilderness, you’ll have no trouble relaxing among the greenery of Wellington and its surrounds.
The Wellington Botanic Garden in Kelburn is a 25ha park dedicated to the conservation and study of local and international flora. Filled with walking trails and open areas for picnics and gatherings, the Botanic Gardens are one of Wellington’s most iconic sites. As a pleasant bonus, the Carter Observatory is located here as well.
Quite a way out of the city, located between Lower Hutt and Porirua, lies Belmont Regional Park. Belmont is perfect if you’d love to get right into the heart of beautiful North Island mountain scenery. The one-of-a-kind New Zealand landscape rolls away in every direction and walking trails allow you to take in the best of it.
Otari-Wilton’s Bush is a botanic garden that is unique in that it’s dedicated entirely to indigenous New Zealand plants. While most botanic gardens feature flora from around the world, Otari-Wilson’s Bush is committed solely to educating guests on the beauty and splendour of the plants you can only find in this part of the world.
If you’re looking for a proper hike with a big reward, the Mount Victoria Lookout high above the city offers the best seats in the house. Go up on a clear day and witness one of the most beautiful vistas New Zealand has to offer, from mountains to the sea. If you’re not feeling overly energetic, you can drive most of the way up too.