When people move to New Zealand, especially if they’re in the construction, infrastructure and engineering space, there are usually a couple of cities they have in mind. Auckland; as New Zealand’s largest city and the country’s de-facto “place to be”, or Christchurch; a city with a booming construction sector and endless work opportunities. Wellington, despite being New Zealand’s capital, is often left behind in favour of the more obvious destinations.
However, with the amount of work available in Christchurch on the decline, and Auckland property prices reaching a critical mass, Wellington is once again emerging as a true alternative for those looking to experience the New Zealand lifestyle in a location that has the best of all worlds right on its doorstep.
City with a Small-Town Feel
Of New Zealand’s three major centres, Wellington certainly stands out as unique. It’s more relaxed and less busy than Auckland, but still has the big city facilities that Christchurch doesn’t always have access to. Wellington has a unique, alternative history and a warm yet ‘trendy’ vibe, whilst still having the laid-back Kiwi atmosphere and lush surroundings that are the whole reason people move in the first place!
All in all, Wellington is a big city with a small-town feel. The feedback I get from people who visit here or have moved here for work say that it’s homely, family-friendly, and love the fact that the community feels so tightly knit. If you’re coming from the UK or Europe, there might be less of an initial culture shock than other locations in New Zealand.
Varied Options for Hobbyists
One of the great things about living in Wellington is that there’s just so much to do. First things first, while Wellington is the capital of New Zealand in general, it’s also our cultural capital. It’s got a vibrant local arts and culture scene with all types of festivals and events on all year round, and a massive range of amazing places to eat and drink. It’s also home to our national museum, Te Papa, as well as one of our greatest exports, Weta Workshop– the special effects gurus behind the likes of Lord of the Rings and Avatar (they don’t call it Wellywood for nothing!).If you’re more of the outdoors type, then don’t worry, Wellington has you covered there as well. Mt. Victoria and Percy’s Reserve have you covered for hiking (or running the scenic route), and beaches like Oriental Bay are perfect for soaking in the rays in the summer. More of a winter sports aficionado? No problem, Mt. Ruapehu and Mt. Taranaki are just a few hours north and west respectively.
Which leads me to the other great thing about Wellington: it’s in a fantastic central location in relation to the rest of the country, and is well connected on all sides. The only thing separating you from the incredible scenery of the South Island is a brief journey on the Interislander, which departs from Wellington harbour, and the metropolis of Auckland is just a short flight or a long (but more than doable) drive away. In short, Wellington puts you in the middle of everything, and what you do with it is entirely up to you!
Career Opportunities Galore
All this sounds great, but it’s hard to enjoy the lifestyle benefits if there’s no work. Thankfully, that’s not the case. Wellington is currently undergoing a huge amount of development, with a number of big projects providing a lot of work for skilled construction professionals; chief of which is the Transmission Gully motorway project.
Full disclosure: I’m a born and bred Wellingtonian, so I might be a little bit biased. However, if you’re looking for a varied lifestyle in a vibrant location, with a range of career opportunities available, in one of the best countries in the world – then you could do a lot worse than Wellington!
Sound good to you? Feel free to get in touch and we’ll see if we can make it happen.