Near lively Queens Wharf, a Victorian former bond store houses the absorbing Museum of Wellington City and Sea. The city’s social and maritime history unfolds through well-executed displays on early Maori and European settlement and the city’s seafaring heritage. The ground floor offers an easily digestible chronological overview of key events, while the main focus of the first floor is the poignant coverage of the Wahine disaster, remembering the inter-island ferry that sank with the loss of 52 lives on April 10, 1968. The Wahine foundered in one of New Zealand’s most violent storms ever, with 734 people on board. On the top floor, a hologram presentation tells the Maori legends of the creation of Wellington Harbour, while rising up through the centre of the building, a tall screen features a roster of short films. There are also museum tours, including the popular Ship ’n Chip tour which involves a ferry trip to Matiu/Somes Island and fish and chips for lunch.

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