The best things to do in the Hutt Valley

Just 20 minutes from Wellington CBD, the Hutt Valley is packed full of outdoor adventures, delicious eats, engaging art galleries and museums and a craft beer hub

Go and play at Days Bay

123 Jackson Street, Eastbourne, Lower Hutt

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A sandy beach with bush-clad hills behind, Days Beach is a beautiful place to visit no matter the season. It's particularly popular during the warmer months for swimming and picnicking. Hire kayaks and paddleboards from WildFinder or head up into the hills for a bushwalk. 

Days Bay has a couple of great cafés for lunch or dinner and an ice cream shop. To get there, drive around the harbour to Days Bay from Petone or take the East by West ferry across the harbour.

SD Days Bay Eastbourne Beaches Bays
SD Expressions Main

Expressions Whirinaki Arts and Entertainment Centre

836 Fergusson Drive, Upper Hutt, Wellington

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Expressions Whirinaki Arts and Entertainment Centre is a vibrant arts centre where you can enjoy, art, culture, history and entertainment. With a regularly changing programme of exhibitions ranging from the very best New Zealand and international art, to local arts and craft and historical exhibitions, Expressions Whirinaki has a special focus on interactive experiences and family-friendly activities. The centre is a 30-minute drive from Wellington or an easy bus or train ride.

Avalon Park Lower Hutt children playing
Avalon Park Lower Hutt children playing water play
Avalon Park Lower Hutt children playing on a swing

Avalon Park

61 Taita Drive, Avalon, Lower Hutt

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The only downside of taking kids to Avalon Park's playground is getting them to leave. With specially-designed tunnels, slides, climbing and abseiling walls, swings, trampolines and rope bridges, this playground is hours, if not days, of fun. 

Revamped in 2016, designers tried to strike a good balance between excitement and ensuring children were protected from injury and a special matting has been laid on the ground to provide protection. The playground also boasts a water play area and artificial stream, as well as a custom-made structure called the Helix, plus the more standard duck pond and picnic area.

Petone Settlers Museum exhibit of the first landing credit Hutt City Council
Petone Settlers Museum scenic petone waterfront credit Johnny Hendrikus lower hutt bikes couple man woman lady summer settlers museum
petone settlers museum petone kids checking out exhibits 1

Visit the Petone Settlers Museum

The Esplanade, Petone, Lower Hutt

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Situated on the Petone shore of Wellington Harbour, the Petone Settlers Museum tells the stories of the people who have made Petone their home. The museum has a series of small exhibitions which focus on different historical and cultural aspects of settlement in the area. The museum occupies one of New Zealand’s most significant memorial buildings, which was built to commemorate the arrival of the first British immigrants in 1840. Before becoming a museum, it served as a bathing pavilion for Petone beach-goers.

See woollen costumes from Lord of the Rings at Stansborough

68 Fitzherbert Street, Petone, Lower Hutt

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Best known for creating woollen costumes for the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films, Stansborough uses the rarest wools from New Zealand to traditionally create and weave stunning collections of exquisite textile pieces. Pure and natural in every way, from growing the fibre to using the skills of the craftsmen on their historic 1890s looms, they weave collections for blockbuster movies and interior designers as well as for superyachts and corporate gifting.

Visit the gallery and experience the historic mill through 'the window to the past' and discover pure New Zealand heirloom treasures or movie memorabilia which are available for purchase. For a greater appreciation, take a behind-the-scenes tour, and learn about the weaving story, from paddock to silver screen. You'll get to see historic worsted looms in action, which is the only six still operating commercially in the world.

Stansborough Mill 2
stansborough petone winter product 2018 scarf and throws

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