- About Heritage
“I’m bored” are two words every parent dreads hearing. A holiday staying at CityLife Wellington, however, is guaranteed to keep boredom at bay. The CityLife’s location (Lambton Quay, in the heart of the CBD), makes it easy to get to key attractions with plenty of Wellington kids’ activities nearby.
We all want the holidays to be that time when we get away from computers and TV and share new experiences as a family, learning, developing, and having fun. Your CityLife Wellington holiday is the ideal time for this, starting with NZ’s premiere attraction: Te Papa Tongarewa, only a short distance away. From Te Papa explore the wonders of the rejuvenated Wellington waterfront; the recent substantial redevelopment delivers a stunning experience for visitors with new waterfront play spaces for families and a promenade linking all of the areas into a pleasant waterfront walk.
Adjacent to Te Papa, Waitangi Park blends an ecologically beneficial wetland with modern playground and skate park. At the Enormous Crocodile Company you can hire 2 or 4 seater covered four-wheel bicycle, and cruise on around to stunning Oriental Bay, with its cafes, champagne coloured sand and swimming pontoons for that quintessential kiwi summer experience.
Alternatively from Te Papa you can head back towards Frank Kitts Park, where the playground, with an amazing helter-skelter style slide, is fun for adults too. Frank Kitts Park also features sculptures, and kids will be fascinated by a piece of NZ’s cultural history, Len Lye’s Water Whirler, out on the pier. For action there’s whatNZ bumper boats and you can follow all that splashing with a delicious gelato from Kaffee Eis, or cross the road and head back to the Art Gallery for great food at the Nikau Gallery Café.
A short distance along the waterfront is Queens Wharf, with more activities on water and off. Ferg’s kayaks feature inline skate hire, kayak hire, a climbing wall for rainy or windy days, and also provide coaching, the perfect opportunity to learn new skills and develop coordination while having fun as a family. The Museum of Wellington City and Sea features activities to entertain and educate the kids, or for sports nuts there’s also the NZ Olympic Museum Gallery. If you want to really see the country children are welcome on Helipro tours -scenic flights leave from the Queens Wharf helipad, or for those who want to stay closer to sea level the East by West Ferry also departs from here, and can take you to a variety of locations including the fascinating Matiu Somes Island. Take a picnic and allow at least 3 hours to explore this Department of Conservation reserve, and learn about its endangered species and vibrant history.
The famous Wellington Cable Car departs from close by the CityLife Wellington Hotel, and at the top there’s either a playground, the Carter Observatory with its world-class interactive multimedia space experience to experience, or the Cable Car Museum. You can catch the cable car back down too, or walk the family down through the botanic gardens if there’s energy to burn.
Other must see experiences easily accessible from the handy Lambton Quay location include the Wellington Zoo –bus number 10 runs right past the hotel or our staff can organise transport; or Zelandia. Lonely Planet described Zealandia's night tour as a 'life-changing experience' in its Best in Travel Guide 2011, while in the day time it features an immersive exhibition including life size animatronic Moa, big screen movie, interactive exhibits and videos all set in 225 hectares of regenerating bush with a ground-breaking 8.6km pest-exclusion fence and a host of endangered species flourishing wild; and yet it is located only a ten minute free shuttle ride away from the waterfront.
Finally no family holiday to Wellington is complete without a trip to The Weta Cave: get an up close and in-depth look at the props and effects that featured in the biggest movies; Weta Digital’s team of elite special effects artists have won Academy Awards for The Lord of the Rings, King Kong and their work on Avatar, which became the world’s biggest-selling movie. They have also worked on films such as Tintin, District 9 and the new classic out of Middle Earth: The Hobbit. Admission to the Weta Cave is free.
There are always plenty of great seasonal activities, especially during school holidays. Just ask at the front-desk to find out what’s on. The CityLife Wellington has a range of accommodation options, including apartment style rooms, to suit any family, and The Living Room features an extra space for eating, relaxing, or using the Wi-Fi. And don’t forget: if your perfect family holiday incudes a little time out, the front desk can arrange baby sitting for you.