New Zealand’s seasons are opposite those in North America and Europe. Wellington’s average daily temperature is 55 degrees, slightly above the national average, but the city has also earned a nickname of Windy Wellington thanks to the Roaring Forties—prevailing westerly winds that scour the Southern Hemisphere between latitudes of 40 and 49 degrees. As a result, the city basks in only am average of 40 calm days per year.
Wellington’s warmest months—December, January, and February, with temperatures of 56 to 69—coincide with peak tourist season. Avoid traveling December 20 through January 31—and other major holidays—when Kiwis take vacation.
Though temperatures rarely fall below freezing, off-season for travelers falls during the coldest months, June, July, and August, when temps range from 43 to 52 degrees.
Come spring (September, October, and November), the countryside comes alive—a gorgeous time to visit as long as you tote your umbrella and light jacket. In fall (March, April, and May), temperatures are pleasant, crowds are fewer, and prices are better, which makes it the perfect time to visit.
As for festivals, Wellington has them year-round. Choose from the biennial Wellington Jazz Festival and New Zealand International Comedy Festival, or bring the kiddos to the Capital E National Arts Festival for children and the week-long Artsplash Festival. Earning its nickname as a prime film-production site, Wellywood also hosts numerous film festivals, including the biennial New Zealand International Film Festival.