We arrive in Wellington about 3:30 pm and grab a cab into city center, which sits right on the busy harbor. It’s also packed with young people and is very loud, thanks to a raucous music festival that’s being held in the city this weekend.
The waterfront in Wellington, New Zealand.
We enter The Museum Hotel on Cable Street, but quickly realize there’s been a scheduling snafu, and we don’t have a room for the night! And because it’s the height of tourist season and the city is packed with music festival folks, the receptionist tells us finding any hotel room for the night is going to be tough.
She speaks the truth. We fire up our laptop and iPhone and spend over an hour searching for a place to stay, but are finding that everything is sold out. We expand our search further and further outside the Wellington city limits, but it seems all of the island is booked. Finally, through some fancy phone work, Peter finds a couple of rooms at the Mercure, an economy hotel about a ten minute cab ride from the waterfront.
After checking in, we grab another cab back to the waterfont and take a quick walk through the music festival site. Yup -- it’s loud, I get it -- so we walk deeper into the city and hit the Kiwi Pub for a few pitchers of beer. We then visit a nearby Malaysian restaurant for dinner – spicy but delicious – and then a gelato shop (medicinal purposes only – it helps cool the burn from our meal) and call it a night.