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“Night time tour a must!”

ZEALANDIA Sanctuary
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$13.73*
and up
Zealandia: The Exhibition and Sanctuary Valley
Ranked #5 of 234 things to do in Wellington
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: ZEALANDIA is a heaven of tropical bliss right on the doorstep of Wellington City. Affectionately referred to as a hidden gem ZEALANDIA received international acclaim for the groundbreaking predator free 8.6km fence. Since the completion of the fence in 1999 ZEALANDIA has brought a number of native birds, reptiles and wildlife back from the brink of extinction where they now roam freely through the 225 hectare valley. A visit to ZEALANDIA is the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and a must for anyone visiting Wellington. There are a number treks to saunter, suitable for any fitness level. Alternatively step back in time with our interactive exhibition center or take a load off at the atmospheric Rata Café.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Stroller parking, Stairs / elevator, Wheelchair access, Activities for young children, Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase
Wellington
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Night time tour a must!”
Reviewed July 6, 2013

We went to the night time tour of Zealandia and was not really sure what to expect but it was an amazing evening. Wandering in a small group listening to the bird calls with a very experienced and enthusiastic tour guide was fantastic. We managed to see a kiwi, glow-worms, eels, reptile, insects - a great number of little critters. This is an amazing project and well worth the visit :)

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Shallan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lauren S, Public Relations Manager at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, responded to this review, July 11, 2013
I'm glad you enjoyed your night tour so much. Our guides do their best to find those unusual nocturnal animals and it feels so different to the day time. Thank you for your review.
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Scottish Borders
Level Contributor
93 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 34 helpful votes
“A great place to take the kids for walk”
Reviewed July 5, 2013

Arrived here just after 10am with 3 young boys 2 x 4yr olds & a 6yr old. We decided to walk around the site first taking the easier red route. The kids loved the adventure, seeing the different birds and reptiles as we walked around. Climbing up to the look out tower, running across the dam, bouncing over the suspension bridge, it was fun. We took about 2 hrs then headed to the cafe for some lunch, which was really good food. After lunch we headed to the exhibition which was so informative, and the kids loved all the interaction stuff.

This is a great place to visit, and if we'd been holidaying for longer we'd have gone back to here.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank jacko1747
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lauren S, Public Relations Manager at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, responded to this review, July 11, 2013
It's always great to hear about families enjoying the sanctuary, there is so much to explore for everyone. Thank you for your lovely review.
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Cambridge, New Zealand
Level Contributor
728 reviews
507 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 267 helpful votes
“Karori Bird Sanctuary Wellington New Zealand”
Reviewed June 29, 2013

What an amazing place and set in the middle of Wellington, and it is pest free. Whoever had the vision and thought thankyou. To be able to wander around in the enclosure amongst the most amazing birds and birdsong is very unusual. Anyone visiting Wellington should visit this place. Its easy walking, well signposted.

Visited August 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank Janr20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lauren S, Public Relations Manager at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, responded to this review, July 11, 2013
Thank you for the lovely review. Jim Lynch had the initial vision and the support of many others including the local community. I'm glad you enjoyed your visit, I agree it's pretty amazing!
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Level Contributor
39 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Do not miss this when in Wellington”
Reviewed June 27, 2013

We happened on Zealandia - a native plant and animal sanctuary - by chance when taking the cable car to the top of Wellington for the view. A volunteer at Zealandia told us about it and the free transport from the cable car.
Our visit will be one of the highlights of our stay in New Zealand and I wish we had the time to visit more than once. The walks are exquisite, the opportunity to see close up rare birds such as takahe was quieting and reflective. The museum is of the highest quality and deepened our understanding of the land and its human history.
We will remember our stay here for years to come.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank SusaninMadison
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lauren S, Public Relations Manager at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, responded to this review, July 11, 2013
It's lovely to hear you enjoyed your visit so much, it sounds like you really made the most of it. We love to know we've connected with someone and that our message is spreading across the globe. Thank you for your kind words.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West London
Level Contributor
225 reviews
62 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 186 helpful votes
“Fantastic night walk - two kiwis, tuatara, parrots... Outstanding guide.”
Reviewed June 22, 2013

I LOVED the night safari we went on in February 2013. This was one of the highlights of my month in New Zealand, although I am a natural history freak. We arrived at dusk, having got a taxi from Wellington city (cost us NZD$30, £16) which was well worth it as it's a bit of a hike uphill. We were briefed and shown a video about the diversity and extinctions in New Zealand since the arrival of people, and our guide talked to us about the kind of things we might see and how they exclude predators to preserve the rare species within. We were given red-light torches (so we could see the wildlife without disturbing it) and set off through the predator-proof fences. We were greeted by the extremely rare and hilariously cute Takahe (like butch, purple moorhens) which escorted us through their enclosure, and then out into the park itself. We visited a place where you could listen to recordings of the almost grasshopper-like cry of kiwis to 'get your ear in' and then we walked, stopping to see the parrots, hearing a morepork (native owl) and then going to places where the guide new kiwis were likely to be. We'd stop and listen for rustling and then move on. We heard kiwis calling to each other across the valley. Our first kiwi sighting was such a treat - first we saw him truffling round in the leaf litter for food about 20 feet away, then he ran out of the undergrowth, tripped in some knot-grass and almost stacked-it on the path right next to us. Our efforts to be quiet dissolved into a chorus of 'awwwww!'. Gorgeous. We saw numerous tuatara (ancient lizards), a weka (like crickets, but armoured-looking) and several stick insects. Our second kiwi was another decent sighting; shuffling through the undergrowth for about 10 minutes, undisturbed by our red torches. We crossed a huge bridge (used to be a dam) and the guide proceeded to give us the most amazing exposition of the night sky (as well as researching kiwis for a number of years, he'd also been an astronomer). It was a crystal clear night, and totally magical. I would go back here in a flash. I know we got lucky, but this was such a memorable experience, seeing and hearing these creatures in a natural habitat. I really felt like I'd been allowed a peek into their world. I wish, wish, wish I'd had a tripod to try and get some photos without a flash. I also wish I'd done a day walk too for the comparison. Cost NZD$152 (£83) for the two of us. We arranged for a taxi to pick us up, which is a good call as you finish quite late.

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank Jo M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lauren S, Public Relations Manager at ZEALANDIA Sanctuary, responded to this review, July 11, 2013
Thank you for your excellent review, it sounds like you had an amazing night!

Our guides do their best to make sure you see and hear all the remarkable sights and sounds of the forest at night, I'm glad you had such a memorable experience.

For those on a budget public buses do run regularly from a short distance away (5 minute walk) or we can arrange return transport (currently $15.50, see our website).
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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