52 Facts About Wellington


Wellington is the second-largest city in New Zealand by metro area, and is the administrative centre of the Wellington Region.

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Wellington was originally designed by Captain William Mein Smith, the first Surveyor General for Edward Wakefield's New Zealand Company, in 1840.

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Wellington leads in large summer festivals, such as CubaDupa and the Newtown Festival.

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Wellington's economy is primarily service-based, with an emphasis on finance, business services, government, and the film industry.

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Wellington is one of New Zealand's chief seaports and serves both domestic and international shipping.

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However, the primary settlement of Wellington is said to have been executed by Tara, the son of Whatonga, a chief from the Mahia Peninsula, who told his son to travel south, to find more fertile lands to settle.

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Wellington was declared a city in 1840, and was chosen to be the capital city of New Zealand in 1865.

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Wellington became the capital city in place of Auckland, which William Hobson had made the capital in 1841.

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Wellington's status as capital is a result of constitutional convention rather than statute.

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Wellington is New Zealand's political centre, housing the nation's major government institutions.

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Over six months in 1939 and 1940 Wellington hosted the New Zealand Centennial Exhibition, celebrating a century since the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi.

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Wellington is at the south-western tip of the North Island on Cook Strait, separating the North and South Islands.

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Wellington is more densely populated than most other cities in New Zealand due to the restricted amount of land that is available between its harbour and the surrounding hills.

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The Wellington region has 500 square kilometres of regional parks and forests.

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Wellington is primarily surrounded by water, but some of the nearby locations are listed below.

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Wellington suffered serious damage in a series of earthquakes in 1848 and from another earthquake in 1855.

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In 2009, Wellington was ranked as a highly affordable city in terms of cost of living, coming in at 139th most expensive city out of 143 cities in the Mercer worldwide Cost of Living Survey.

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Between 2009 and 2020 the cost of living in Wellington increased, and it is ranked 123rd most expensive city out of a total of 209 cities.

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Wellington contains many iconic sculptures and structures, such as the Bucket Fountain in Cuba Street and Invisible City by Anton Parsons on Lambton Quay.

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Wellington has many different architectural styles, such as classic Painted Ladies in Mount Victoria, Newtown and Oriental Bay, Wooden Art Deco houses spread throughout, the classic masonry buildings in Cuba Street, state houses particularly in the Hutt and Wellington's southern suburbs, railway houses in Ngaio and other railway-side suburbs, large modern buildings in the city centre and grand Victorian buildings common in the inner city as well.

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Wellington experienced a real estate boom in the early 2000s and the effects of the international property bust at the start of 2007.

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The median rent in Wellington has increased significantly in recent years to $600 per week, higher even than Auckland.

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Wellington City Council survey conducted in March 2009 found the typical central city apartment dweller was a New Zealand native aged 24 to 35 with a professional job in the downtown area, with household income higher than surrounding areas.

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At the 2013 census, the largest employment industries for Wellington residents were professional, scientific and technical services, public administration and safety, health care and social assistance, education and training and retail trade .

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Wellington is a popular conference tourism destination due to its compact nature, cultural attractions, award-winning restaurants and access to government agencies.

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Wellington's culture has been befamed across the world since the 1990s for being notably "cool", incongruous and influential given the city's relatively small size .

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Wellington has a strong coffee culture – the city has more cafes per capita than New York City – and was pioneered by Italian and Greek immigrants to areas such as Mount Victoria, Island Bay and Miramar.

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In particular, Wellington is noted for is contributions to art, cuisine, and international filmmaking, among many other factors listed below.

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Recent films shot partly or wholly in Wellington include the Lord of The Rings trilogy, King Kong and Avatar.

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Wellington has a large number of independent cinemas, including the Embassy Theatre, Penthouse, the Roxy and Light House, which participate in film festivals throughout the year.

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Wellington has one of the country's highest turn-outs for the annual New Zealand International Film Festival.

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Wellington is home to groups that perform Improvised Theatre and Improvisational comedy, including Wellington Improvisation Troupe an Improvisors and youth group, Joe Improv.

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Wellington is the home for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, the New Zealand School of Dance and contemporary dance company Footnote.

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Many of New Zealand's prominent comedians have either come from Wellington or got their start there, such as Ginette McDonald, Raybon Kan, Dai Henwood, Ben Hurley, Steve Wrigley, Guy Williams, the Flight of the Conchords and the satirist John Clarke .

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Wellington is home to groups that perform improvised theatre and improvisational comedy, including Wellington Improvisation Troupe, The Improvisors and youth group Joe Improv.

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From 1936 to 1992 Wellington was home to the National Art Gallery of New Zealand, when it was amalgamated into Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

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Wellington is home to the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts and the Arts Foundation of New Zealand.

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Wellington is characterised by small dining establishments, and its cafe culture is internationally recognised, being known for its large number of coffeehouses.

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Wellington Restaurants offer cuisines including from Europe, Asia and Polynesia; for dishes that have a distinctly New Zealand style, there are lamb, pork and cervena, salmon, crayfish, Bluff oysters, paua, mussels, scallops, pipis and tuatua ; kumara ; kiwifruit and tamarillo; and pavlova, the national dessert.

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Wellington city is administered by the territorial authority of Wellington City Council.

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Wellington is covered by four general electorates: Mana, Ohariu, Rongotai, and Wellington Central.

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Wellington offers a variety of college and university programs for tertiary students:.

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Victoria University of Wellington has four campuses and works with a three-trimester system .

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Massey University has a Wellington campus known as the "creative campus" and offers courses in communication and business, engineering and technology, health and well-being, and creative arts.

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Wellington is served by State Highway 1 in the west and State Highway 2 in the east, meeting at the Ngauranga Interchange north of the city centre, where SH 1 runs through the city to the airport.

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Bus transport in Wellington is supplied by several different operators under the banner of Metlink.

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Wellington is the North Island port for Cook Strait ferries to Picton in the South Island, provided by state-owned Interislander and private Bluebridge.

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Today, Wellington city is supplied from four Transpower substations: Takapu Road, Kaiwharawhara, Wilton, and Central Park .

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Wellington was one of the original nine towns and cities in New Zealand to be supplied with natural gas when the Kapuni gas field entered production in 1970, and a 260-kilometre-long high-pressure pipeline from the field in Taranaki to the city was completed.

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The high-pressure transmission pipelines supplying Wellington are now owned and operated by First Gas, with Powerco owning and operating the medium- and low-pressure distribution pipelines within the urban area.

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Wellington's first piped water supply came from a spring in 1867.

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Wellington is served by 26 full-power radio stations: 17 on FM, four on AM, and five on both FM and AM.

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