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Wairarapa

Situated on the south east coast of the North Island, the Wairarapa is the outdoor playground of New Zealand’s capital city Wellington. The region is bordered by the Tararua Range to the west and the Pacific Ocean to the east and is an area that gives you a feeling of being off the beaten track, one almost of isolation from the rest of the country.

Renown as a country escape, Wairarapa is a large area featuring uncrowded space, a low population and where the pleasures of a country drive are easy to experience. One of the best ways to encounter the rural charm is to stay in one of the over 100 cottages or rural homestays that are

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Kapiti

The Kapiti Coast is a complete contrast to the hustle and bustle of busy Wellington and less than an hour’s drive or train ride away, is the relaxing atmosphere of this coastal region. Here, spectacular sea views – dominated by the mysterious Kapiti Island – are teamed with glorious sunsets, untouched native forest and rugged hills to form the Kapiti Coast.

The towns have interesting names: Pukerua Bay, Porirua, Paraparaumu and Waikanai, the latter two are adjacent to Kapiti Island and the Ngawhakangutu (lake) wetland. The Waikanai beach is popular throughout the summer.

Home to a world renown area of marine and nature reserves, the Kapiti Coast offers a wide range of activities from adrenaline-pumping outdoor adventures to

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Hutt Valley

The twin cities

Wellingtonians often just refer to “the Hutt” meaning the Hutt Valley or the suburbs of Petone, Lower Hutt and Petone, and Upper Hutt. Depending on the traffic, the Hutt Valley is a 15 – 30 minute drive from Wellington city.

The two cities of Lower and Upper Hutt are only separated by two kilometres and in the gap is The heritage Silver Stream Railway museum which regularly operates preserved old locomotives along a restored section of rail track.

The Hut makes an alternative to Wellington and casual accommodation is more often available here. You will also find all city amenities along with good swimming at Eastbourne beach along from Petone and there is good

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Wellington

The centre of NZ Government

Some say it blows but we say that there’s always fresh air. Wellington is New Zealand’s capital city and home to the nation’s uniquely designed government house (the Beehive).

Government House with the Beehive to the left

With a population of approximately 450,000 people, Wellington is a relatively compact city bursting with vitality and culture. With it’s trolley busses and hilly terrain, it’s often compared to San Francisco. This cosmopolitan harbour city has a great range of shops and cafes and is home to a thriving arts community with a diverse array of cultural activities, scenic attractions and affordable shopping.

Having an international airport, Wellington is a gateway city to

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Cook Straight Ferries

Crossing Cook Strait

The calm waters of Marlborough Sounds

New Zealand’s Cook Straight separates the North from the South Island. This stretch of water has strong currents, and often very strong winds make for some rough crossings.

But when the weather is too rough, crossings are cancelled. If you are concerned abut rough crossings, note that half the journey is made through the protected waters of Marlborough Sounds and Wellington Harbour.

The ferries have large & spacious ferries and when the weather is kind, passengers can travel in ocean comfort and stroll or sit out on the decks. There are many great photo opportunities.

In Picton the “Interislander” ferry terminal is beside the town centre and a short walk

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