We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

“Tranquil wildlife haven in Wellington” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of ZEALANDIA Sanctuary

Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Zealandia: The Exhibition and Sanctuary Valley
Ranked #5 of 229 things to do in Wellington
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
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, Stairs / elevator, Activities for young children, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access, Stroller parking, Bathroom facilities
Derby, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
13 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Tranquil wildlife haven in Wellington”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 23, 2014

This was a great idea to create a wildlife sanctuary so close to the city of wellington. It provides a fascinating insight into the birdlife of New Zealand, and the network of paths and walkways around the two original Wellington reservoirs, give the opportunity for walks and strolls at leisure or with one of the very knowledgeable volunteer guides. It was a lovely rural oasis, providing a good contrast to the urban/cultural experiences of the city. I would recommend this to others seeking a few hours of peace and tranquility and the opportunity to learn about natural history of NZ.

Visited March 2014
Thank Celia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

1,635 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Sheffield, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
142 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 109 helpful votes
“Lovely place to visit in the middle of the city”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 23, 2014

Excellent staff on arrival, enjoyed the walk and seeing the birds etc. think it's a really good idea to try and establish this place. Only down side was you can only get to see kiwi, frogs etc at night. Having said that I appreciate this is not a zoo. Would definitely recommend, and also a free shuttle from lambton cable car.

Visited March 2014
Thank KathrynT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Daphne, Alabama
Level Contributor
223 reviews
85 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 260 helpful votes
“So much to see...stay all day of you want”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 22, 2014

Numerous well maintained trails for various energy levels. Some wheelchair access. Very scenic. Be sure to visit the inside exhibit first to orient yourself as to the need for the refuge at all. Nice café if you'd like to go for lunch, sweets, coffee, etc. before/after your visit. As with any attraction where the animals are free to roam vs a zoo (Zealandia is NOT a zoo), what you may see varies by day and your observational skills. Binoculars and a birding guide are a big plus. If I lived in Wellington I would most definitely be a member and visit often for walking the trails and birding, and of course general supporting Zealandia and its 500 (yes, 500) year plan to restore native flora and fauna. If you are visiting Wellington without a car and are staying near the cable car, you can get a free shuttle from the top of the cable car to Zealandia and back. Night tours are also available and would be when you're most likely to see kiwi.

Visited January 2014
1 Thank NNMinAL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rochford, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
21 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“An absolute must”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 21, 2014

An absolute must when visiting Wellington. A wonderful way to see the native wildlife of New Zealand. The work and effort done by the staff is exceptional.

Visited March 2014
Thank Jeny W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
15 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 21, 2014

We did the evening hike to see a Kiwi and it was awesome! They give you little headsets so you can hear the animal experts talking on the trip. Flashlights (red lights) are supplied and you walk for over 2 hours seeing all sorts of New Zealand critters including and eel, other birds, tuatara, weta, lizards. It does get dark and the path is mostly rock/dirt so you have to be sure footed. Towards the end of our hike we did get to see a Kiwi and watched him for quite a long time. This is a real nature hike, with no guarantees, but I asked our guide when the last time she didn’t see a Kiwi was, and she said the success rate is around 95%. Probably won’t get better than that! Be warned, no weather cancellations, it rained a bit on our trip and we kept going! Highly recommend! It was great to see them in their natural habitat and roaming free. I think you can get a discount if you buy a day pass as well, but we did not do this. Most of entry goes to conservation which always makes me feel good. You should go!

Visited March 2014
1 Thank Bare R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed ZEALANDIA Sanctuary also viewed

Wellington, Greater Wellington
Wellington, Greater Wellington
Wellington, Greater Wellington

Been to ZEALANDIA Sanctuary? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing