The Nations Capital

Day 17 & 18: May 5 & 6 – Wellington

No cycling – rest and sightseeing days

I had a couple mellow days.  I tend to gravitate towards water, so I headed down to the waterfront and meandered around.  There was a firefighter combat challenge taking place so I stopped to watch for a bit.

A firefighter obstacle course

A firefighter obstacle course

Part of the firefighter combat challenge

Part of the firefighter combat challenge

 

And then I headed over to the Te Papa museum and checked out a couple of the exhibits.  They had a feature on Gallipoli, which the lady described to me as ‘New Zealand’s version of Vimy Ridge’ from WWI.  It was a pretty interesting exhibit with larger than life artwork and interactive displays to describe the story.

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This piece was probably 3-4x larger than life, with impressive attention to detail

This piece was probably 2-3x larger than life, with impressive attention to detail

Walking through a mimic of the trenches

Walking through a mimic of the trenches

 

Next was an exhibit on animals, these two birds the Moa (largest flightless bird, can get up to 500lbs) and Haast’s eagle (largest eagle to have existed) are now extinct and used to be native to New Zealand.

Moa and Haast's eagle

Moa and Haast’s eagle

Dino's

Dino’s

 

The next exhibit was about earthquakes and actually had a little house that you could stand in and it would shake so you can ‘experience’ an earthquake.  New Zealand has a lot of earthquakes, from what I gather they are occur pretty much daily somewhere in the country.  In fact I think I felt one in Wellington when the place I was in early evening on the 6th swayed for a few seconds.  I’ve been told this is the site where they report New Zealand earthquakes: http://www.geonet.org.nz

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A shaking house to mimic what an earthquake would feel like

A shaking house to mimic what an earthquake would feel like

 

After the museum I hiked up to the Mount Victoria lookout.

Wellington is known for its wind, this statue is representing a man leaning into a gale force wind

Wellington is known for its wind, this statue is representing a man leaning into a gale force wind

I just thought these houses were cute

I just thought these houses were cute

A beach in Wellington

A beach in Wellington

Looking over Evans Bay from Mount Victoria Lookout

Looking over Evans Bay from Mount Victoria Lookout

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View of Wellington from Mount Victoria Lookout

View of Wellington from Mount Victoria Lookout

 

Overall I was pretty impressed with the Wellington waterfront area.  They have a lot of activity on the waterfront, it is predominantly pedestrian/cyclists based and it seems to draw a lot of people.  They also have a few large pedestrian overpass areas that expand the amount of area that is pedestrian/cyclist friendly.

These two would occasionally jump from the staircase into the water below, but they waited for a lot of build up from the crowd and when they finally jumped I could never get in front of the crowd that would build up to get a pic

These two would occasionally jump from the staircase into the water below, but they waited for a lot of encouragement from the crowd and when they finally jumped I could never get a clear line of site for a pic

Large overpass area

Large overpass area

Another overpass

Another overpass

An interesting way of bringing more green into the city

An interesting way of bringing more green into the city

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Every Fri. and Sat. night there is a night market, so I had to go check it out as well.

Mostly food stalls, but some entertainment at the night market as well

Mostly food stalls, but some entertainment at the night market as well

 

Otherwise my time was spent starting to map out the next few days ahead of me as I will start to explore North Island!

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