A Walk in Windy Wellington…

Wellington is the capital of New Zealand and is at the southern end of the North Island. The cruise ship terminal was only a 20 minute walk from the CBD area. This was one of the only ports that we could actually walk off the port. Mostly we had to be taken in a bus as the port authority does not allow people to wander willy nilly due to security…

It was an overcast, cool sort of day but, unusually, only a slight breeze blowing. My plan was to wander around and see where it took me.

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The buildings of the CBD loomed around me and I passed a couple of sculptures with no explanations.

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Rounding a corner I walked past a very large, what looked like a sandstone building. I had to have a closer look when I read the information board and discovered it was built from wood.

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It was originally planned to have the building constructed in concrete and timber, but the cost of concrete at the time led to a decision to build in timber alone. The Italianate, Neo-Renaissance style was usually the domain of stone buildings, thus the building is designed to mimic stone. As an important symbol of nationhood the building was constructed to resemble an Italian stone palace to help convey its strength and stability in the expanding empire.[1] The timber is native kauri, which could not be replicated because New Zealand’s remaining public kauri forests are permanently protected. If the building had been constructed out of stone as planned, it may not have survived subsequent earthquakes, as it is situated near a major fault line.[3] The architect was William Clayton (information from Wikipedia)

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It is now the Wellington Law School but the public are allowed to look into the foyer area, so in I went through these ornate doors.

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A very grand staircase but I could not go upstairs, this was only for students use.

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Looking out through the window I could see the distinctive shape of the Parliament House, referred to as the “Beehive”.

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There it is, New Zealand’s seat of power. No time today to go inside.

So I walked on past the shops, restaurants and office buildings. All looking much the same as in Australia. Then I spotted a sign pointing down a narrow lane to the cable car and Botanic Gardens. This is more in my interest. I am not a shopping type of person…

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Here it comes.

The Cable Car has been in operation since 1902 and carries in excess of 1,000,000 passengers a year and runs every ten minutes between Lambton Quay and Kelburn, for the benefit of local residents and tourists alike.

 Only $4 for a one way ticket the cable car allows easy access from its terminal on Lambton Quay in the CBD to the top entrance of the Botanic Garden and the Kelburn lookout. Three intermediate stops allow for easy access to local residential and business addresses and at Salamanca access to the Kelburn campus of Victoria University.

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From the top I looked out across Wellington Harbour and the distant hills the city is built on.

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Directly opposite the cable car terminus is the entry to the Botanic Gardens. The brochure tells me it is a 40 minute down hill stroll back to the CBD. So in I went with camera at the ready.

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As I would expect in New Zealand it is very lush and green.

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With the tree ferns popping up every where.

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Morton Bay pine, Hoop Pine

At this time of the year, in fact most of the year, the New Zealand bush is not a colourful place, but the myriad shades of green are so peaceful. But I did spot some colour…


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These aloes were such a vivid contrast to the surrounding green.

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Here a lone tree flaunts its autumn foliage. (I spy a bench too)

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Nearing the bottom now as I walk down these steps.

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As I leave the Botanic Gardens behind I follow the path and then round a corner I come across a quite different garden.

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The Lady Norwood Rose Garden. They are at the end of the season but still putting on a colourful display.

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I see a begonia house and a café across the other side of the rose beds. But did you notice those 3 coaches in the top photo of the rose gardens? Yes it is the passengers from Oosterdam on their conducted tour and the café is full. So I wander round the tropical display in the green house.

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Peace Garden

This is just outside the rose garden.

The Peace Garden’s flame comes from fire created by the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima at the end of World War II.

The flame was presented by the people of Japan to New Zealand in recognition of their efforts against atomic weapons.

The flame is in the Japanese Pagoda and there were many Asian people here taking each others photos in front of this idyllic scene.

Not exactly sure which way to go next I asked a local and he pointed me through an old historic cemetery, which would take me across a bridge over the motorway…


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This is the bridge over the motorway and it was very controversial when it was built as it cut right through the centre of the cemetery.

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This is the remaining cemetery on the other side of the motorway.

It is a peaceful sanctuary of cultivated and forested open space. Over 1,300 carved and worn monuments are distributed throughout the Cemetery that straddles the motorway. A nationally important collection of heritage roses, some dating from the colonial era, inter-twine with other early plantings amongst picket fences and wrought iron surrounds. Walkways offer a unique stroll between the city centre and the formal Rose Garden of the Botanic Gardens.

Time had passed and now I had to walk briskly to be back at the cruise liner before it sailed. So it was back past Parliament and the old wooden Government House and then I caught up with a steady stream of other passengers heading the same way. The wind had picked up and it was a frisky head wind that we all battled into. Windy Wellington was running true to form.


“Restless Jo” leads a dedicated group of cyber walkers. They take us on walks all over the world. Go across and see where in the world they all are this week.


Categories: cruise, Jo's Monday walks, New Zealand, Oosterdam, photos, travel, Wellington | Tags: , , , , | 48 Comments

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48 thoughts on “A Walk in Windy Wellington…

  1. Great tour round Wellington and the gardens Pauline! I’ve been to Wellington once to visit my cousin and we got the funicular cable car up to the top and then walked to his house (about 10 minutes away) from there. There were wonderful views from the top! We skirted quickly round the gardens so am glad to have had this tour with you now! Looks like you had a great trip 🙂


    • Your cousin lives in a great location. You’ll have to go visit again… Did you go to Tepapa the national museum?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes we did Pauline – I remember the Treaty Of Waitangi exhibit the best and have a photo of it somewhere! My cousin has a house with a veranda that looks out to the bay and you can see the planes taking off and landing at the airport from there! It certainly was an incredible view!


  2. Thanks for that most enjoyable walk Pauline. The botanical garden looks fabulous. I particularly loved the closing shot of the lone bench in the cemetery.


  3. Oh I remember this beautiful city and your fotos are fabulous as always Pauline. I remember the cemertary too and Jim took a photo of me for a change in it!


  4. Pauline you managed to show Wellington off beautiful even though the morning was not very inspiring for one to venture out. Your enthusiasm is an inspiration but I knowWellington It can be very inhospitable weather wise. You will remember the day we lent on the wind it was so strong. But this post makes me realise how we miss out if we are not adventurous and just have a layed back crusty day on board.


  5. The lack of time see everything was one of the things I didn’t like about the one cruise I was on. Still, you managed to pack in a long walk full of sights and smells.


    • Because I had lived in NZ for many years I knew it fairly well so was happy to just get out and walk around. The tours were mainly going to places I had already been to.


  6. Pingback: Jo’s Monday walk : Podziemia | restlessjo

  7. You are an intrepid explorer – this was a great tour. The grand wooden building is amazing and contrasting it to the beehive you can really see the way architecture has changed. A botanical garden is such a wonderful way to get to know a bit about the country you’re in too – lovely photos.


  8. Beautiful photos, Pauline. What a gorgeous botanical garden! The golden rose is stunning. 🙂


  9. Pomme I really enjoyed spending time ont his walk. and seriously, I purposely came back when I could enjoy and take my time – a meander stroll through NZ’s capital. and do you know what those pink things are that hang in the upper right photo in the collage? I have two “Henry’s garnet” shrubs that have white things similar – anyhow, the single orange blossom was nicely placed – and thanks for the walk in Wellington.


  10. I love simply ambling around a city, though it is often an idea to have a general idea of where to aim for if it is a big city! Wellington looks quite spread out over those hills so I am glad you followed your nose into the Botanic Garden as that is where I would have gone. Sounds as though your cruise was a huge success. Any more planned?


  11. What a fantastic walk. I’ve never been to NZ but am hoping to one day 🙂 That Morton Bay pine is a lovely looking tree!


  12. It seems to me that you found the very best bits of the city Pauline and shared your lovely walk with us 🙂 Thank you!


    • Much more to see in Wellington. I would especially like to visit Te Papa the national museum, I’ve heard great reports about it. But having a ship to catch limits what I could do. Will go back one day for a good look around…


  13. So many completely different things to look at in that walk! It’s lovely. Great post.


  14. Another amazing journey you have taken me along Pauline.. Loved the building made of wood which looked like stone.. and the gardens are just beautiful.. I also had never seen an aloe ‘vera’ in flower.. I have several aloe vera plants in my home.. I wondered if these were the same or some other variety? Love the flowers.. 🙂

    Have a wonderful week..
    _/\_ Sue


  15. Your photos are always so good that I feel as if I’ve been there with you. I love the cemetery and the idea behind the peace garden. And I love the way you keep avoiding and then encountering the cruise tourists who are happy to be contained by buses. Not you, though. Thank goodness.


    • It always amuses me when I see them all being shepherded along and only given a short time to see things. I maybe don’t see as many places as we have to walk but I can spend the time really enjoying what I do see.


  16. Pauline, you covered some major territory here! I love your panoramic views of Wellington, that “stone” government building made of wood (!), and that beautiful garden with so much green tropical foliage. That’s how much of Nanning looks but much more unkempt!! You found some beautiful ponds, waterfalls, flowers, steps and bridges in the Botanic Gardens. What a lovely excursion. I’m glad you got to go on your own without a group. 🙂


    • Thanks for coming along on my Walk Cathy. We didn’t go on any of the bus tour groups from the boat. Much prefer to do our own thing.


      • That’s how I’d do it too, Pauline. I always hate group tours and prefer to do everything on my own. It turned out to be a lovely walk. 🙂


        • Thanks Cathy. Your adventures leave me breathless.
          BTW it is now 11-30pm over here and I am just going to bed, good night, see you tomorrow…

          Liked by 1 person

  17. I love a ‘follow my nose’ kind of walk, Pauline. Especially when it takes me to a cable car and beautiful gardens. 🙂 Those shell pink begonias at the top of your gallery are simply exquisite. Many thanks for the link, hon. What a beautiful bit of world you found for yourselves.


    • Wow Jo that was a super quick response you got here before I had finished commenting on your invigorating walk.
      Thank you for taking this walk with me


      • It’s damp here today so I haven’t been out walking. It means I can actually respond to the comments now instead of burning the midnight oil. It’s Chelsea Flower Show this week so I’m off to watch and do a little ironing 🙂 Hugs to you and Jack.


        • Oh Chelsea is one of my all time to do things that I never did… Though I believe it is so crowded that it is hard to get around.
          Well Jo it is now 11pm so time for me to go to bed, good night

          Liked by 1 person

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