Located at the southern end of the North Island, Wellington is deemed as the capital city of New Zealand. It is also known for its vibrant arts and culture, dramatic harbour setting, incredible nature and wildlife experiences. The city of Wellington is absolutely a must-see for anyone travelling in New Zealand. If you are looking for other great things to see and do within a couple of hours of the city to explore, here are a few of VroomVroomVroom's best road trip itineraries from the "coolest little capital in the world".
Separated from Wellington proper by the harbour, and from Upper Hutt by the Taita Gorge, Lower Hutt has more cafes and coffee shops per capita than New York City. It also has the pretty sea-side towns of Eastbourne Bay and Days Bay, as well as being convenient to a relaxing riverside location.
Travel Time: 18 minutes
Directions: Driving from Wellington, head northeast on Willis St toward Willeston St. From there, continue onto Aotea Quay and take the Route 1 ramp to Porirua/Hutt Valley and merge onto Stage Highway. Take the first exit at the roundabout onto Waterloo Road.
Just 20 minutes north of Wellington, Porirua city surrounds Te Awarua-o-Porirua Harbour, which has become a favourite spot for jet skiing and watersking. It has many popular tourist attractions, including the Aotea Lagoon and the New Zealand Police Museum, as well as fun activities with something to suit all ages and tastes.
Travel Time: 20 minutes
Directions: From Wellington, State Highway 1 travels along Porirua/Route 1/Palmerston North. Take the first exit at the roundabout onto Hagley St.
The city of Upper Hutt should not be confused with the nearbyLocated against forested hills alongside the Hutt River, Upper Hutt offers plenty of activities if you enjoy outdoor fun. It's also famous for its parks and recreation sites.
Travel Time: 31 minutes
Directions: From Wellington, State Highway 2 travels along the Hutt Road past Lower Hutt and the intersection with State Highway 58 at Haywards/Manor Park to the Silverstream Bridge. An alternative route you can take is the Eastern Hutt Road located between Lower Hutt and Upper Hutt via Stokes Valley.
Only a short drive from Wellington, why not take full advantage of the picturesque vineyards, award-winning wines, rugged coastlines and the historic charm of the Wairarapa region. Plan your trip now and select an abundance of fun activities and attractions in Wairarapa.
Travel Time: 1 hour
Directions: From Wellington, take on State Highway 2 through the Remutaka (Rimutaka) then pass and down into the Wairarapa plains. Just add another 15 minutes for Martinborough, or 20 minutes for Carterton or Masterton for a taste of the region.
With more than 25 boutique wineries to explore around, learn why Martinborough is another popular weekend getaway for residents of Wellington. Find time to explore the wine village of
Travel Time: 1 hour and 12 minutes
Directions: From Wellington, State Highway 1 travels along Porirua/Route 1/Palmerston North then continue on SH 2. Follow signs for Route 2/Hutt Valley/Masterton then turn right onto State Highway 53 then turn left onto Oxford St.