We arrive in Wellington, the world’s windiest city, on a night bus. The bunk beds barely fit us; after a long hike the previous day, we sleep with the hiking clothes and shoes on.
Like the rest of kiwis, Wellingtonians are masters of sincere small talk. They are not just polite, they really mean it. Cab drivers or hotel receptionists, nearly everyone you meet in Aotearoa, the ”land of the long white cloud”, is happy to talk to you for a few minutes, give you some local tips and recommendations.
The wind power and lack of air pollution are some of the benefits of being ”Windy Wellington”. Hotel doors warn against strong winds. With all the wind, Wellingtonians are most likely permanently challenged to keep their hairstyles in place. On top of this, steep hills are sprinkled within New Zealand’s capital – quite a sight in combination with strong airflows.
Strong rain hides the town behind a foggy curtain. We enjoy New Zealand’s national museum Te Papa and a weekend market with Chilean street food and locally handmade wooden earrings.
In addition to the strong winds, Wellington is famous for an outstanding craft beer. The local pub scene is lively and there is even a pub-crawling map to keep you updated on the hottest pubs around. E. is too tired to hop from pub to pub, however, we try local beers at a nearby restaurant and the names on the menu speak for themselves: ”Parrot Dog Pale Ale”, ”Garage Project Beer Beer”, ”Garage Project White Mischief”…
I’ve heard stories that planes at Wellington airport often don’t take off due to the strong winds. The cab driver assures us that most likely planes won’t depart because of foggy conditions. I look forward to making my own conclusions and adding some more adrenaline to our already extreme adventures in the Middle-Earth.