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The sun always seems to shine that little bit longer in the Hutt Valley, giving you plenty of time to discover some of the Wellington region’s best-kept secrets.
Discover the origins of modern Wellington and other New Zealand firsts at the Petone Settlers Museum and stroll along historic Jackson Street, Petone – a bustling heritage precinct full of boutique and specialty shops, cafés, bars and restaurants. Fill up your water bottle at Te Puna Wai Ora - the spring of life then discover woven wool treasures, plus The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movie costumes at the historic Stansborough mill.
Ferry across Wellington harbour to the upmarket Eastern Bay villages; with a stop on the wildlife sanctuary of Matiu/Somes Island - an historic quarantine and wartime bunker site now home to New Zealand’s unique reptile, the tuatara and little blue penguins.
Pedal along the Eastern bays or wander the lush bush trails and enjoy harbour vistas. Explore the spectacular Pencarrow Coast and three lighthouses at the entrance to Wellington Harbour including New Zealand’s first, lit in 1859. Or just relax on the beach!
Join in the summer tradition of jumping off the wharf too and stay the night at The Gatehouse luxury cottage.
Explore a day out with a hike, bike and beer. Hire a bike or simply wander along any part of the 28km of Hutt River Trail, past the working steam locomotive at Silver Stream Railway and on to the historic Remutaka Rail Trail. Stay on track and loop back around the Remutaka ranges on the 115km Remutaka Cycle Trail.
Test your handicap on the same courses played by some of the world’s greatest golfers. Play a round or nine at riverside courses including the Royal Wellington, Manor Park, Boulcott’s Farm and Te Marua Golf Clubs.
Gaze at contemporary art in The Dowse Art Museum or Expressions Whirinaki Arts and Entertainment Centre with diverse and exciting exhibitions and events, a delicious café, well-stocked shop and an engaging family lounge. Best of all – it’s free to visit.
Take a journey of your own to Middle-earth and relive the cinematic magic of The Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Visit the set locations of Rivendell, Helm’s Deep, Isengard and the Great River Anduin. Kaitoke Regional Park is a highlight.