The heart of Wellington City lies amidst a vibrant waterfront, a corporate lane known as Lambton Quay and wider beauties such as the Kapiti coast overlooking the appropriately named Kapiti Island. Wellington City is a destination to fall in love with. However, without a doubt, a visit to Wellington is not complete without a night out to the rowdy Courtenay Place.
My journey through the bars of Wellington starts at the top of Courtenay Place right on the corner of Cambridge Terrace, at the Welsh Dragon Bar. The Dragon Bar is infamous for being the only Welsh Bar in the Southern Hemisphere and the man who runs it, Mike (a dear family friend) would have to be one of the proudest ex-pats in the world of his heritage. The Dragon Bar is a renovated old public toilet which creates an awesome welcoming atmosphere… even if you aren’t Welsh.
Continuing my journey through Courtenay Place and I’m feeling the need for a good selection of tapas and a bit of relaxation before more partying. Hummingbird Bar and Cafe is my destination and it never fails to deliver. I take a seat and order up a few mojito’s whilst the Cleaver Jazz Band perform. Hummingbird is a great place to relax with friends and meet new, like-minded people, which is why this Wellington bar is a multi-time winner of the Montana eatable award. The staff here are dedicated and passionate about what they do.
If you’re looking for another place to start-up your evening, you can check out the classy and quirky Library at 53 Courtenay Place. They have a range of house favourites and luxury cocktails, such as the Sea Salt & Caramel Fudge Martini, that will kick off your night just right. The old warn tables, bookshelves, and dimmed lighting provide an intimate atmosphere for guests.
When you’re ready to get into the shots, head to Mish Mosh (Allen Street & Courtenay Place) for the next leg of your hazy journey. Mish Mosh is always busy, and has a great vibe on Friday and Saturday nights. There may be a queue on weekends, but don’t be put off by it, it still only takes about 10 or 15 minutes to get in. There’s a large outdoor patio and two sweet dance floors including a basement underground scene that will keep you dancing until the wee hours of the night.
To end off your night, take a drunken stroll to Electric Avenue (132 Courtenay Place) which kicks off after 1 or 2 in the morning. It’s great for a late night dance party and is open till 4 or 5 a.m.
I have to mention some other great Wellington bars at Courtenay Place such as Coyote Street Bar, Big Kumara, The Establishment and also Blend Bar & cafe on Wakefield St just round the corner for a great night out. When visiting Wellington City, make sure you spend some pennies down on Courtenay Place and Cuba Street, I guarantee a night to potentially remember and the hangover will be worth it.