The smaller ships dock at Queens Wharf cruise terminal, located in the center of Wellington. Taxis are generally available at the pier if you wish to go farther afield.
The big ships dock at Aotea Quay, between the Inter-Island Ferry Terminal and the train station. It's a 5 minute walk to the train station , which has cafes, newsstands and small shops and local bus terminal for rides into the city. It's a 20 minute walk to the city. A shuttle service is provided at Aotea Quay. There may be a cost for the shuttle depending on the cruise line.
At present the main cruise berth has been affected by the 2016 earthquake and ships have to berth along the same line of Wharf but further north.
The city of Wellington provides a shuttle to help passengers get from the cruise terminal to the center of town. It costs NZD5, cash only in NZD, USD or AUD, tickets are purchased at the terminal and can be used all day.
The shuttles operate on a continuous loop and run frequently throughout the day.
Printable map to take along.
Cruise calendar for this port.
Watch a destination video.
Wellington, known as New Zealand's arts and culture capital, offers an unmatched blend of culture, heritage, fine food, and lively arts and entertainment.
Surrounded by hills and a rugged coastline, the city boasts a stunning harbor. Wellington's charm is that it serves up a vibrant inner city experience with a slice of New Zealand scenery. And because of its compact nature, you can sample it all - boutique shopping, art galleries, trendy cafes and restaurants. Right on its doorstep is a network of walking and biking trails with beautiful wineries and vineyards just a few hours away.
Wellington is a city that brims with energy and vitality, it offers an almost overwhelming array of theatre, music, dance, fine arts and galleries and museums.
It is easy to get around the central city on foot, as is very compact and pedestrian-friendly.
Kelburn Cable Car The bright red cable car climbs from the waterfront to Kelburn in under four minutes. From the top there are stunning views of the city and harbor.
Museum of Wellington, City and Sea The museum features a large-scale model of the harbor including model ships and other maritime memorabilia.
National Museum and Art Gallery (Te Papa) Opened in February 1998, Te Papa, the National Museum of New Zealand, is a wonderful way to discover this country, its land, its people and its culture. Using an exciting combination of interactive displays and leading technology, Te Papa will entertain and inform its visitors.
A $5 NZ day-tripper pass gets you on local public transport, including the cable car.
For a spectacular overview of the city and harbor, ride the cable car from Lambton Quay (behind the downtown shops) up to the hilltop district of Kelburn. The cars move along a cable in the ground, not in the air. You can ride down ($1.80 NZ one way).
It pays to compare your cruise line shore excursions here.
A wide range of shops, boutiques and department stores flank a mile-long thoroughfare, extending from Lambton Quay south to Courtenay Place. From crafts to clothing, hand knits to antiques, you will find plenty to shop for in this cosmopolitan city.
The New Zealand dollar is used in New Zealand. A few traders do accept foreign currency, particularly in tourist destinations. The conversion from US dollars to NZ dollars is approximately US$1=NZD1.30.
Automatic teller machines (ATMs), locally known as 'the hole in the wall', are available in just about every town.
For e-mail, the Aotea Quay cruise terminal has six Internet stations. Free WiFi in downtown Wellington.
The emergency telephone number in New Zealand is 111.
On Christmas day, Easter Sunday and Anzac day morning (25th April) all but a few "essential businesses" must be closed.
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