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Being a city set on a sparkling harbour, it's not surprising Wellington is home to some stunning beaches and bays. Whether you're looking for a spot to surf or scuba dive, or somewhere to take the family for a swim, Wellington has got you covered.
Just a few minutes walk from the city, this golden sand beach is a top spot for a bit of walking, cycling or people watching. It's a safe swimming spot for families and plays host to beach sporting events during summer. It's also home to some of the swankiest real estate in the city and great eateries.
Across the harbour lies Days Bay and Eastbourne. Our favourite way to get there is on the East By West Ferry, which runs regularly from Wellington’s waterfront. When you arrive in Days Bay, you can browse art galleries, go for a walk in the hills, or wander around to the quaint seaside suburb of Eastbourne where you’ll find delis, boutiques and cafes.
To the east you’ll find the small but perfectly formed Scorching Bay. Arguably the most stunning beach in Wellington, it’s a favourite spot for a picnic, a game of beach cricket or just hanging out in the sun and watching the inter-island ferries pass by. Great coffee and icecream can be found at the bay's resident cafe, Scorch-O-Rama.
Located on the south coast, just 10 minutes drive from the city, Lyall Bay beach is Wellington’s most popular surf beach. Although great for surfing, it’s still a safe beach for swimming and is patrolled by lifeguards during summer. It’s also the best place to watch windsurfers and kitesurfers make the most of the wind that sometimes breezes through Wellington. You'll find a range of tasty cafes, including the Maranui Cafe, and one of Wellington's flagship vegetatian cafes, The Botanist.
This historic beachside suburb is a traditional fishing hub, located on the south coast of Wellington. Here you’ll find hints of a bygone era including the bandstand in Shorland Park near the beach. If you’re a keen scuba diver, check out Taputeranga Marine Reserve just offshore. It's home to a vast array of marine wildlife and a sunken navy frigate making it a popular dive site.
Once home to the Air Force, Shelly Bay is best known for the famous Chocolate Fish Cafe. Home to beanbags, barbecue sammies and ride-ons for the kids, all with views across the harbour back to the city.