Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A weekend away

Craig and I took the boys to Wellington for a few days over Labour weekend.  We've only ever gone there without the kids, but after this trip I really hope we can do it again soon.  I thought I'd share a few tips in case you'd like to go there with your little ones:

  • We took the scooters in our suitcase.  It was well worth it, as we could cover so much more ground than we would have otherwise and the boys stayed much more entertained while us oldies enjoyed the view (and the sun). 
  • Don't get stuck on Level 2 at Te Papa; the 4th floor also has an amazing kids area with pretend shop, scales, toy food, puzzles, etc. When we went it was completely empty. 
  • We walked to Oriental Bay (in the photo above) and were very impressed with the playground by the little beach.  There's so much to do around there.  Plus, the toilets were really good.  Huge (space for push chair/children), with natural light, a large mirror to make it look even lighter and bigger, a bench to put all your gear on.  It's little touches like these that make it easy for parents and show why Wellington is such a family-friendly place. 
  • There's another awesome playground and skate park at Waitangi Park (by the Chaffers Dock Building where the City Market is held on Sundays).
  • We had lunch at the Southern Cross, a huge pub with space for everyone.  Honestly, you could have a rugby team, coffee group, book club, whatever in there and they won't even know about each other.  The friendly people at the bar gave the boys little goody bags with stickers and colouring activities to keep them busy. Will definitely go there again. 
  • One afternoon we took the cable car up the hill to the Botanical Gardens.  It was great fun; the boys scooted around and spent ages playing on the WW2 Krupp gun while us oldies... yes, enjoyed the view and the sun. 
  • We stayed at these serviced apartments right behind the St James Theatre.  It's not very flash, but really central and one of the first bus stops in town when coming from the airport. We walked everywhere and only needed the bus to and from the airport.
  • And finally: take Metservice forecasts with a pinch of salt. We took hats and jackets for the predicted weather, but we only needed them when we landed back in Auckland on Sunday. Thanks for putting on the weather for us, Wellington!
What are your travel tips for Wellington? I'd love to find out about more day trips you can do with kids. 

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