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Wellington facts & figures

We tell a great story here in Wellington, and we find personality goes a long way. But if you're just looking for the facts, well, you've come to the right page.

Wellington region map with districts

The Wellington Region

The Wellington region is located in the lower North Island of New Zealand, and is made up of eight district and city council areas. These are, in order of largest to smallest population:

  • Wellington City
  • Lower Hutt City
  • Porirua City
  • Kapiti Coast District
  • Upper Hutt City
  • Masterton District
  • South Wairarapa District
  • Carterton District

The Wellington Regional Economic Development Agency is tasked with enhancing prosperity, vibrancy and liveability across the region.

Population 

About 514,000 people live in the Wellington region, which is 9.5% of New Zealand’s population. The Wellington region is home to many diverse cultures, with Statistics New Zealand estimating around 25% of the people in Wellington are born overseas. 

The population mix consists of:

  • 77% European
  • 13% Maori
  • 10.5% Asian
  • 8% Pacific Peoples
  • 1.5% Middle Eastern/Latin American/African
  • 1.8 % other (New Zealander)

* Note: Total of more than 100% due to people being able to associate with more than one ethnic group.

Economics & workforce

Wellingtonians enjoy the highest average household income in the country. Around 84% of people in Wellington have a formal qualification, and 28% hold a tertiary qualification or equivalent - compared with 20% of New Zealand as a whole (Statistics New Zealand, 2013).

Population 514,000
Average household income $119,678
GDP Per capita $69,851
Median house price (2016) $592,500

Quality of life

Wellingtonians topped the charts in the The Nielsen Quality of Life Survey, with 16% rating their quality of life as "extremely good". Another 73% considered it "very good" or "good". They also had the strongest perception of their area as a great place to live, had the greatest pride in the look and feel of the region and were the highest users of public transport. To top it off, there were top ratings for Wellington's safety and diversity. We can't argue with that!

Climate

Wellington’s weather comes in for some criticism and, yes, it can get a bit windy from time-to-time. But the capital actually enjoys a temperate and often sunny climate, enjoying around 2,100 sunshine hours a year. The warmest month is February, the coolest is July, and our average annual rainfall is 1249mm.

Tourism

Tourism is a vital contributor to Wellington's economy, resulting in some $2.6 billion in expenditure per year - that's just over $7 million per day, almost $5000 per minute!

Direct international visitor arrivals via Wellington Airport 211,000 p.a.
Commercial guest nights (Domestic) 2.3 million p.a.
Commercial guest nights (International) 964,000 p.a.
Annual tourism expenditure $2.6 billion

Out and about

Wellington is a super cool and small city. So compact in fact that 18,000 of the city’s residents walk or jog to work. The residents are a lucky bunch - nearly all of us are within 3km of the sea which means easy access to our 497km of coastline. On top of all that seaside goodness, Wellington has 363km of mountain bike and walking tracks around the city.