Wellington has the privilege of being New Zealand's capital city. It is located perfectly on the south end of North Island and was described as "the coolest little capital in the world" by Lonely Planet in 2011 – quite an accolade for such a small city!
It's creative, vibrant, arty and young with plenty to see and do, so if you are thinking of moving to Wellington then read on for the migrant's essential guide to living in Wellington!
Why live in Wellington?
According to the government website in Wellington, more than half of its population are aged between 18 to 49, well above the average for New Zealand so it's ideal for young families. There are also a high proportion of Europeans living in New Zealand, (76.8%) and over a third of residents are University educated. When you couple all of this with the fact that the city enjoys 2,000 hours of sunshine every year, you have the perfect city!
Areas to live in Wellington
The centre of Wellington can get very pricey and properties are largely limited to apartments or new builds which tend to be small. This area is ideal for single commuters who like to be close to the centre of the city and soak up the atmosphere. Families however, may want to consider somewhere like Khandallah which is a residential suburb with good transport links.
Mt Cook is generally favoured by students and provides good value for money, especially since it's within walking distance from the Central Business District (CBD). Aro Valley is also worth considering, it's a little eccentric but full of character! Be aware though that it can get cold in the winter. Kelburn is a mixture of expensive homes and cheap flats plus you can get the cable car into town!
Wellington City Councilhas a handy community profile of Wellington districts so check that out for further detailed information.
House prices and jobs in Wellington
Again, according to the Wellington government website, the average house price in Wellington is $538,000. Property management websites state that Churton Park, Kelburn, Khandallah and Oriental Bay are amongst some of the more exclusive and therefore expensive areas of Wellington whilst Newlands and Tawa are amongst the cheapest.
Property and business services provide the most jobs in Wellington, followed by government and defence. Unemployment stands at around 6.1% as of March 2012.
Public transport in Wellington
Wellington has excellent public transport links with the Metlink providing an affordable and comprehensive service. Metlink includes all the buses, trains and ferries around Wellington.
What to do and see
Wellington is crammed with local attractions and sports from kayaking to museums, gourmet festivals to theatre. The official Wellington Tourist Information site can give you plenty of ideas on what to do and see in Wellington!