I Fell In Love

Before you all spaz out, no- it’s not with a local guy who will keep me here forever.

It’s with WELLINGTON! Obviously.

There are so many outdoor and indoor activities in Wellington, along with about 18 million coffee shops and restaurants so I wanted to share some of those things here to help explain why I am so in love with “The Coolest Little Capital.” This post would start to bore you if I wrote it all in one so I’ll break it up into a few posts. For now I’ll stick to nature related things!

1) Mount Victoria

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Sunrise, daytime, sunset…it doesn’t matter, the view never disappoints. I really enjoy spending time here and love the view from the second viewpoint which doesn’t seem to be as popular to tourists. Just walk down the road from the main one and bam! You got a slightly different vantage point and less people! I don’t think there’s a better spot to sit and stare at this amazing little city. I like walking up the trail to the top, then walking down the road which takes longer but offers some more sweet as vantage points.

2) Makara DSC_0227

Makara is about a 25 minute drive from the city center, but only due to winding skinny roads. It feels like your so far out of the city so it’s a great day escape. You can spend the whole day out there hiking or mountain biking.

3) Mount KauKau

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KauKau is the highest peak in Wellington and opposite of Mount Victoria. You have to drive the the suburb of Khandallah and it’s less that 40 minutes walk to the top. The Sound of Music 2 was filmed up here!

4) The Brooklyn Wind Turbine1888927_10155559999210370_6382465988752026730_o

This is the view from the Brooklyn Wind Turbine. There is a solo turbine just hanging out right here and this is the view from the base of it. This is one of the first places I visited in Wellington when I studied abroad because Liam brought a group of us up there. I have ran up there a few times because Esteban showed me the mountain biking trails that start in Aro Valley and lead up to it. It’s about three miles/5k uphill on the trails, so quite challenging but worth the view every time.

5) Wellington Waterfront DSC_0340DSC_0758

You can walk from Queens Wharf and out past Oriental Bay, or I suppose you could just keep walking around the bays until you’ve walked yourself silly. This is my most frequented running spot because I love the giant trees decorated with lights that line Oriental Bay. They look fake, like those little plastic lego trees but on a giant scale. I still don’t know what they’re called.

6) Botanic Gardens & Cable CarFullSizeRender

Walking through the Botanic Gardens gives you some awesome views of the harbor and city. If you go at night you can even find glow worms! There are many pathways and stunning flowers to check out and it’s also where the iconic cable car finishes its’ journey. Lucky for me the gardens are right next to my office so I snapped this photo on my lunch break!

7) The Bays

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There’s Lyall bay and there’s Island Bay, then there’s Evan’s Bay and Owhiro Bay. There’s also Oriental Bay and Shark Bay and Scorching Bay and a zillion other bays I have yet to venture out to. They’re pretty and make you feel like you’re really far out of the city. I’m excited to visit more of them.

8) Red Rocks Reserve

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Red Rocks is a marine reserve and coastal walk in Wellington. Many fur seals hang out here and breed in certain times of the year. This is a nice half day walk not far from the inner city. And yes, some of the rocks are a vibrant red color which is neat. I won’t bother with a geology lesson today…

9) Day Walks & Mountain Biking

There are all sorts of day walks in the hills surrounding the city, including the Skyline Track, Southern Walkway, and City to Sea Walkway. You can also go out to Somes Island for a day trip which is beautiful, or go to Zealandia, a nature reserve. There are also heaps of mountain biking trails which would be really cool to try out if I had a a bike. It’s good to know the opportunity is there. Maybe the bikers won’t be mad at me if I run on them?

10) Close to Tararua Forest Park and Rimutuka Forest Park

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Did someone say tramping?! Yep, there are some amazing hikes to do in these two forests.  I haven’t done any tramping in the Rimutukas but Fran and I drove through them a few weeks ago. I’m stoked to get out there and camp. Just waiting on a nice weekend to pop up!

That’s the nature side of Wellington.

Cheers:)

Island Bay to Lyall Bay

I haven’t posted in a long time so I thought I’d share a small adventure I went on in Wellington.

Last Monday I took a half day at work because the sunshine was taunting me and I had some time in lieu. My plan was to hop on a bus and head out to one of the bays. I got to the bus stop and randomly picked Island Bay as my destination which turned out to be quite beautiful. By the time I got there the sun had disappeared behind the clouds in classic Wellington fashion.

Not to worry, this gave me the opportunity to work on my overcast day photography. My next purchase will be a tripod because if I want to take my photography to the next level and learn more than I really need one! I got some nice photos of the beach as the sun was setting in the hills behind me.

I ended up walking from Island Bay to Lyall Bay, which isn’t that far, but I actually thought Lyall Bay was just around the bend. Wrong. No fear, I was on an adventure, a very tame adventure! I do thoroughly enjoy doing things by myself and being my own company sometimes. I’m quite a social person but some of my fondest memories traveling have been times where I have strayed off to do something simple on my own.

Anyways, here are some photos!

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Back in Wellington

After Canada I spent a few days in San Francisco catching up with Anna and Megan. Thanks for having me ladies, it was a blast! I also hung out with Glen because he happened to be in San Francisco (we met in Thailand)! I’m so glad I got to see so many friends along the way, it makes me so so happy:)

I became Katherine’s temporary flatmate for two weeks. She was my neighbor last time I was in Wellington and is a Kiwi Mate for international students. We hiked up Mount Victoria my second night back—The view never disappoints!

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View from Mount Vic

A few days later Alan and I hiked up KauKau, which is in the opposite direction of Mount Victoria and is the highest point in Wellington. It was such a clear day, we could see the South Island from the top.

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View from KauKau

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South Island in the distance

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I am absolutely loving being back in Wellington. This is my favorite city on earth! At least so far 🙂 My first week back was spent walking around a ton and enjoying the city. It really is ‘the coolest little capital on earth.’

I was having a slight panic attack before I left home because this time, leaving was different. I knew I had to find a job and a place to live and it was all a little more scary. I’ve never been nervous to travel before but this time I was. Then I landed and I was back to my calm self. I didn’t even start looking for jobs for a few days. I was just enjoying being back in Wellington. It’s like being nervous for a race…. you’re antsy and have butterflies in your stomach… But the second the gun goes off all your nerves instantly disappear.

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Since my arrival I have applied for many jobs and when I’m not applying for jobs I’m sifting through flats on trademe and oxygen or attending flat viewings. A couple from England and I have teamed up to get a place. It’s seriously a job in itself. The market is really competitive right now because all of the students have returned to Wellington for the start of the school year.

I have turned down two fancy restaurants. Mostly because I would work nights only and I’m reluctant to serve somewhere where I can’t pronounce the food. If I’m going to be challenged, I want it to be in a new type of job. Most places I have applied to have been for reception positions. Tomorrow, I have an interview at a call center, where my friend Francesca just got hired (she’s the girl from England who I will be flatting with). Wish me luck!!

We also might have a flat by Wednesday, PLEASE!!!! All three of us are living in hostels and in and out of friends places.

I spent a few days in Tauaranga and will post on that trip soon!