If you've been following The Residents, you'll know I'm passionate about Wellington. I've always loved helping friends find the cool and unknown spots to go. It's pretty easy to find amazing things around this town dubbed 'The Coolest Little Capital' for a damn good reason. It's one of the best things about being a life-long Wellingtonian. But if you're a tourist, in a town where there is so much to do, how can you see the best of Wellington in just one day?
I've been waiting for the 24-Hour guide on this city since I first came across Wallpaper City Guides in 2007. Since this hasn't yet emerged, The Residents has taken the liberty of providing a 24-Hour guide for visitors to Wellington, to get the most out of the city in a short time frame. Mixing established with fresh, you'll be able to walk everywhere in this suggested list with plenty of time to spare to wander through Cuba Street and look into interesting shops.
These places are all around Te Aro so my suggestion is if you are from out of town, head to stay at the luxurious Museum Hotel (soon to be QT Museum Wellington Hotel). You should be able to walk on foot easily everywhere in 10 minute bursts except catching an Uber at the end.
8:30 AM - Walk around Oriental Parade
A great day in Wellington starts with a walk around Oriental Parade. Check out the natural beauty that the city has to offer. If you want to work up a sweat, head up the hill to Roseneath for some cardio.
10:00 AM - Breakfast at Poneke by Mojo on Clyde Quay
Mojo Poneke (by Martin Bosley) is a hands-down favourite place for a delicious gourmet brekkie by the harbour. The interior is stunning and their menu even more so. Best of all, time to get in that fresh Mojo Coffee while people watching at Clyde Quay wharf. Pick figs and whipped Greek yoghurt (which tastes like cream) for sweet or mushrooms on toast for something more savoury.
11:00 AM - A Hema facial with Margaret Hema - 49 Courtenay Place
Once you've demolished my breakfast, walk through Waitangi Park and up Allen Street and onto Courtenay Place. Head to the little pink room for one of Margaret Hema's legendary facials. Not just for the girls, she's been treating Wellington's best and brightest's skin for nearly 30 years (28 to be precise). Margaret has her own range of products and became famous internationally when she gained Liv Tyler as a fan while working in New Zealand on the Lord of the Rings. Margaret has been internationally recognised for her work - but it is her presence and calm nurturing ways that make a Hema Facial like none other. Book in advance.
1:00 PM - Coffee at Ekor Bookstore
Ready to chill after an intense facial. Now is the time to head from Courtenay up Tory Street and then around opposite Moore Wilsons to College Street. There you will find a safe haven, Ekor Book Shop, where you can settle into a large arm-chair and browse books to your heart's content. Should you feel the need to re-caffeinate, there is a small bookshop cafe where coffee is available on demand.
2:00 PM - Olive Restaurant & Cafe, Cuba Street
If you're peckish, now is the time to go to Olive Restaurant & Cafe for a late lunch. Recently voted 28th best restaurant in the World by Monocle magazine, Olive punches well above its weight. The fried chicken is highly recommended with a glass of Wairarapa Sauvignon Blanc.
3:30 PM - City Gallery Wellington, Civic Square
The heart of Wellington's art and culture lies at City Gallery Wellington. Check out the current exhibitions: Jealous Saboteurs by Francis Upritchard and Sister Corita's Summer of Love. City Gallery often have great community events on as well, so make sure you check their website to stay up to date with their latest offerings.
5:00 PM - A beer at LBQ, Edward Street
If you're feeling like you've had enough culture for one day, now's the time to head to Little Beer Quarter. Run by the much loved Stacey Walsh, LBQ provides a friendly and jovial atmosphere alongside one of the best selection of craft beer in Wellington. Bring a coat so you can sit on Edward Street and enjoy the last of the afternoon sunshine.
7:00 PM - Burger at Burger Liquor, Willis Street
After your pint, you MUST head for the best burgers in Wellington at Burger Liquor. The old school interiors match with hardcore milkshakes and juicy, juicy burgers. Burger Liquor is perfect casual dining when you want to focus on enjoying yourself. Pick a bowl of curly fries and their original burger - the best simple burger in town.
8:00 PM - Catch a gig somewhere like The Thistle Inn, Thorndon
Make sure you stay on top of what's happening by checking out a website like Eventfinda and head along to a gig somewhere intimate and cool like The Thistle Inn. Hollie Smith recently played at this venue - the oldest pub in Wellington. If you love crooning jazz and sassy soul, there's always something fantastic to look forward to. Take an Uber to your venue before returning home to sleep.