Exploring the Wellington Botanical Gardens is a great way to spend a few hours relaxing in the city. There is no charge to get in, and you can either walk up or take the cable car, which costs NZ$3.50 one way or NZ$6 round trip. The walk is a bit steep, and the cable car looked interesting, so when I went with Franzi from Germany (who I met in my hostel) we decided to fork over the NZ$6.
When you get off the cable car at the top, turn around and look back down. You’ll get a great view of Wellington and the harbor, even if the sky is a bit overcast.
The Botanical Gardens have several paths winding through the woods. They are well-shaded, and even in the summer Wellington wasn’t very warm, so I suggest bringing a sweatshirt or jacket. There are dirt paths and paved paths, all taking you to different parks of the gardens. Even some of the trees were interesting to look at.
We also spent some time at the duck pond watching the ducks swim around, and then wandered over to see a waterfall.
And of course, the main reason for going: all the flowers. I’m not going to pretend to know what most of these flowers are called, but I thought they were beautiful and probably took about 75 pictures of all the different flowers throughout the gardens.