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We arrived at Wellington city centre around 9:30pm after having driven around looking for a free place to park for an hour. Unfortunately there are no free spots there so we paid $12 for 12 hours at Te Papa Museum’s car park by the harbour, allowing us to visit the museum before our 12 hours were up.
Te Papa Museum, which is free of charge, is New Zelands national museum and contains an array of exhibitions. We only had time to visit two; the Maori exhibition which housed a large collection of Maori artefacts, such as settlements, boats and traditional wear and the Mountain to Sea exhibition which displayed a wide variety of animals including native animals such as the Kiwi, Orcas, Kea, Kaka and the Colossal Squid, the largest formalin fixed Squid in the world.
Maori settlement Kiwi bird
Colossal squid Maori Waka (canoe) boat
Wellington didn’t really appear as a capital to us, there were no high rising buildings or the usual traffic you would expect which made it all the better. Cuba street was a quirky main street lined with small quaint shops and cafes. My favourite cafe, in passing, built in a shipping container parked on the side of the road was Stories Cafe. To be honest not enough time was spent here before we decided to move on to catch a ferry to the a South Island but as always we prefer to be out of the cities.
That night we hopped on the 3 hour Interislander Ferry to Picton at 2:30am for $206.