10 Date Ideas in Wellington: Whatever the Weather
For such a small city, our cool little capital packs a huge variety of activities for couples to enjoy.
With this in mind, we’ve collected a range of fun date ideas to cover every weather eventuality.
From close encounters with Wellington Zoo’s cutest residents to romantic picnics, strenuous hikes and delicious dinners, there’s something for every couple, come rain or shine.
1) Dinner and a movie
Some may scoff at dinner and a movie, but with striking Art Deco theatres and the city holding the crown of culinary capital, the classic date night staple suddenly becomes a lot more romantic.
Visit the Embassy Theatre for blockbusters, and maybe sip on a cocktail or two in The Black Sparrow lounge tucked beneath the theatre, or head to Light House Cuba for something more cerebral with the latest foreign and arthouse releases.
Then, relax in sophisticated comfort and indulge in the seasonal flavours from Executive Chef MacLean Fraser at Artisan, visit the cute Boulcott Street Bistro for French fayre with a kiwi twist or visit Egmont Street Eatery in one of Wellington’s most vibrant laneways.
2) Catch some live music
Intimate local haunts Meow and San Fran have both been host to national and international performers while bigger names often grace the stage at Michael Fowler Centre. Keep an eye on Under the Radar’s Gig Guide for the latest and grab some tickets for you and your significant other.
3) See a show
Wellington pulses with creativity and new shows are always being produced and staged in the capital. Head to Hannah’s playhouse, The Opera House, the quirky Circa theatre or the experimental BATS theatre for comedy, drama, dance and more.
4) Learn something
When the weather takes a turn, head to our free National Museum, Te Papa. Feed your creativity in Toi Art, home to the national art collection and exciting new commissions or visit the Te Taiao Nature exhibit and clutch each other tightly as the Quake house simulates an earthquake.
Don't forget to head to the Attic at the nearby Wellington Museum and take in their collection of the weird and wonderful.
5) Order Room Service!
Probably the easiest date night here, simply don’t go out! Book a night in one of our Premier Suites and don’t leave the room until your late check out of midday. Better still, book in for a Romance and Rosé escape complete with bubbles on arrival and breakfast in bed the following morning.
... or shine
6) Visit the Botanic Garden
Tucked behind Bolton Hotel is the urban sanctuary of Wellington Botanic Garden. Take a trip together on the quaint Wellington Cable Car, an Edwardian funicular railway joining Lambton Quay to the top of the park. From here, meander through the manicured gardens, native bush and sculpture trails. At night you can even see glow worms!
7) Wellington Zoo
Book a close encounter for you and your loved one for a date you’ll never forget. Get up close and personal with a cheetah, giraffes, cheeky meerkats or cute red pandas.
8) Take a hike
Go in search for the perfect panoramic view of the capital on one of the many trails through Wellington’s lush town belt, a series of interconnected reserves offering scenic views over the city, bush walks and parks ideal for picnics.
For those averse to the climb, Mount Victoria can be reached by car or public transport and is the ideal spot to catch a romantic sunset.
9) Night Markets
For foodies on a budget, head to Cuba Street on Friday and Saturday nights and sample a variety of international flavours at countless food stalls. You’re never too far from a craft beer or cocktail too, with the Little Beer Quarter and the classy Ascot and Nightflower nearby to round off the night.
10) Visit Zealandia
There’s more to simply grabbing a snap in front of the romantic boathouse on the lower lake. This completely fenced eco-sanctuary offers a range of tours including some at night and twilight where kiwi have been spotted.