Courtney Johnston, the esteemed Chief Executive of Te Papa Museum, graciously offers her insightful recommendations for exploring Wellington.

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Good Books

Book shop
2/16 Jessie Street, Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Good Books

"One of my most favorite very local places that is hyper-local to where I live is Good Bookshop. Beautifully curated by the group of writers that run the bookshop. Spanning cookbooks and children's books through to adult fiction and nonfiction picture books….It’s tiny but perfect."

Courtney JOHNSTON

Mount Victoria

Observation deck
Lookout Road, Hataitai, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
Mount Victoria

"Mount Victoria overlooks the city. Definitely, during Covid at least, it was the hill that I walked my problems up and then left them — let them get blown away by the sea breeze at the top. I live in the middle of the city so it's my local hill. It’s one of my favorite places."

Courtney JOHNSTON

August Eatery

Cafe
75 Taranaki Street, Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand
August Eatery

"August on Taranaki Street is my current favorite for breakfast and for lunch. Beautiful menu, amazing staff and just a really warm environment."

Courtney JOHNSTON

Verb Wellington

Festival
120A Buckley Road, Southgate, Wellington 6023, New Zealand
Verb Wellington

"One of my favorite Wellington arts institutions is Verb, who do the amazing Verb Book Festival every year and then organize other events throughout the year. And they often base themselves out of Meow, which is this beautiful casual bar on Edward Street so kind of tucked away. A combination of Meow and Verb is unbeatable, I think, for Wellington events."

Courtney JOHNSTON

The Dowse Art Museum

Art museum
45 Laings Road, Hutt Central, Lower Hutt 5010, New Zealand
The Dowse Art Museum

"I work at Te Papa obviously, but my top visitor recommendation for anybody is actually The Dowse out in Lower Hutt. It has always had a strong combination of sort of craft practice alongside contemporary art. The programming is always really fresh, innovative and welcoming."

Courtney JOHNSTON

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