Wellington and the Wairarapa Sights

Museum of Wellington City & Sea

Published 10/27/2015

Fodor's Review

You can smell the hessian (burlap) sacks, hear the gulls, and see the (mechanical) rats scuttling around in this refurbished 1892 bond store, now a museum that portrays the history of the original Māori tribes and the European settlers who arrived around 1840. Spread over three floors, the displays cover work, leisure, crime, and education in 19th-century Wellington. Holographic effects bring to startling life two Māori legends, and in the Wahine Gallery, exhibits and a short film depict the 1968 Wahine ferry sinking that cost 52 lives. The Plimmer's Ark Gallery tells the story of John Plimmer, known as the "Father of Wellington" for his work in developing the city. You can see Plimmer's Ark, the excavated remains of the ship Inconstant, wrecked in 1849 on Pencarrow Head, in the Old Bank Arcade, a shopping center on Lambton Quay. Plimmer bought the damaged ship in 1850 and used it as a loading dock. Eventually it became landlocked and later demolished, except that the remains of its hull were discovered in 1997.

Sight Information


The Bond Store, Queens Wharf, Wellington, Wellington, 6011, New Zealand



Sight Details:

  • Free
  • Daily 10–5

Published 10/27/2015


What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in Wellington and the Wairarapa

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss

No Thanks

Love To Travel?

Get FREE email communications from Fodor's Travel, covering must-see travel destinations, expert trip planning advice, and travel inspiration to fuel your passion.

Thank You

Now sit back, relax, and check your inbox to start planning your next travel adventure.

Please tell us more about the type of travel you're interested in. Check all that apply.