Fresh off the night bus, I arrived to Wellington one early November morning. Despite the very few hours of sleep crossing the north isle from one side to the other, I was pretty keen to get out exploring this wee capital that I had heard so much about.
(Be advised, an alternative title of this post could be "Me eating my way through Wellington".)
Located just on the edge of the north island, Wellington is making the most of its pretty lively waterfront. With restaurants, live music, museums and even the occasional rowing team gliding past there is plenty to rest your eyes upon.
You can't visit Wellington without climbing one of its many hills. I wandered up Mount Victoria one morning and it rewarded me with some epic panoramic views from the top.
Back down through Victorian builds...
The fika session of the day was to be held at Sweet Release. How glad was I to come across this place; found just around the corner from my hostel on the caffeine hunt my first day in Wellington. I entered after seeing a sign saying something like "vegan food served here"; I asked what the vegan options were only to be told EVERYTHING!
Quickly decided to return after seeing a girl order a take away mocha topped with toasted marshmallow fluff (pinch me for I must be dreaming?!) and also tried the chickpea t*na sandwhich for lunch. Yum!
By recommendation of my dearest Elme, I went to look for Laundry on Cuba Street. Considering our mutual Bristol love story I was pretty positive it was going to be great; and the recommendation did not fail to impress me. With its quirky interiors; disco balls, the kind of menus that you want to become an illustrator for and whimsical chalkboards.
Not to mention the gorgeous meal I had. On instagram I wrote "At first glance it might just look like a regular burger. But this was like the least burgery burger I’ve ever had, or more likely the most innovative?"; it had baba ganoush, pickled beetroot and some added crunchy sweetness from cashew brittle.
My last day in down I hiked up the (very steep, mind you!) hill behind my hostel on O'Reily Avenue to reach the university area. Check this purdy building out ↑
Past the uni, I continued to the botanical gardens - that I was not actually too impressed with; but I did get to snap a few shots of the infamous Wellington cable car.
In the eveningl I set off towards the Wellington Night Market, which takes place each Friday and Saturday (with one evening being fully vegan at the beginning of each new month apparently!).
I got side tracked on the way there and stood to watch a group of capoeira performers in the middle of the street. I stood eyeing them for a good 40 miutes before realising the November evening was indeed a little too cold to stand still.
Another night, another burger. There were plenty of vegan options amongst the market stalls, but I decided to try the chickpea burger from In Bloom after reading only good things about it on HappyCow. Very filling comfort food without feeling too greasy!
I finished with vegan churros for dessert; which led to a pretty sweet food coma to fall asleep on. The next morning I got on the ferry to cross Cook Strait and thus enter the south island.