Bolton Street Cemetery


Lost beneath a canopy of oak and pohutukawa, between freeway off-ramps and apartment towers, this fabulously dank and atmospheric remnant dates back to the 1840s. Thousands of Wellingtonians were buried here up until 1892. They rested in peace until 1972 when the Wellington Urban Motorway was bulldozed through the middle of the boneyard. The remains of 3693 people were exhumed then reinterred in a common vault at the bottom of the cemetery.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Wellington attractions

1. New Zealand Parliament


New Zealand might be a young country but it has one of the oldest continuously functioning parliaments in the world and has chalked up more than its share…

2. Old Government Buildings

0.33 MILES

Across the road from Parliament, this grand Italianate structure (1876) is the largest wooden building in the southern hemisphere, although it does a…

3. Wellington Botanic Gardens

0.34 MILES

These hilly, 25-hectare botanic gardens can be effortlessly visited via the Wellington Cable Car (nice bit of planning, eh?), although there are several…

4. Wellington Cathedral of St Paul

0.37 MILES

At 88m long and 18m high, this modern Anglican cathedral exudes quasi-Moorish architectural vibes inside its lofty interiors. It first opened its doors in…

5. Wellington Cable Car

0.37 MILES

One of Wellington’s big-ticket attractions is the little red cable car that clanks up the slope from Lambton Quay to Kelburn. At the top are the…

6. Space Place

0.39 MILES

Inside the Carter Observatory at the top of the Botanic Gardens, this full-dome planetarium offers space-themed multimedia shows and stargazing sessions…

7. National Library of New Zealand


As well as being a wonderful resource for researchers, the National Library has various exhibition spaces including the Turnbull Gallery, displaying rare…

8. Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision


Ngā Taonga is a vortex of NZ moving images into which you could get sucked for days. Its library holds tens of thousands of titles: feature films,…