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New Zealand’s capital city is a haven for colour and quirk, from the street sculptures and markets, to the bars and restaurants scattered across the city. Here’s a few colourful eateries where the fun décor is the dish of the day.
Hugely popular with locals, Havana Bar is hard to miss with its multi-coloured wooden exterior. The tapas menu is a must-try, either in the restaurant or nestled in a booth in the indoor/outdoor bar area. References to the bar's Cuban namesake can be found all over, from the candlelit display of the Virgin Mary in the entrance to the postcards and murals adorning the walls.
This zany little craft beer bar is decorated largely from recycled materials, with plastic buckets for lampshades and awnings made from old skis. Golding's Free Dive is a free house, meaning they can put anything they like on tap with no obligations to big breweries, which means the lineup is always fresh and interesting. Patrons can also order pizza from nearby Pizza Pomodoro and have it delivered to their table while they drink.
Perched on Petone Esplanade with views across Wellington Harbour, Seashore Cabaret combines retired merry-go-round horses, carnival kitsch, pinball machines, and colourful custom-made furniture to create a one-of-a-kind dining experience. The menu offers a kaleidoscope of delicious vege-friendly dishes, seasonal fare, and family classics including burgers, curly fries and thicker-than-thick milkshakes. Check out Seashore's equally kitschy-cute little sister café, Miss Fortune's.
Housed in the old Maranui Surf Club, this quirky Wellington institution should be at the top of every visitor's must-see must-dine list. Make like a local and work your way through the casual menu, packed with everything from breakfast burritos to scrambled tofu, and enjoy the eclectic retro decor and huge views over Lyall Bay.
The local philosophy that ‘you can’t beat Wellington on a good day’ really can’t be beaten at Scorch-o-rama – a bright and bustling eatery on the sandy shoreline of Scorching Bay. Only 10 minutes’ drive from the central city, a quick bite at this destination spot will set you up for a sunny (or stormy) day of relaxing on the beach.