Committed to conservation, research and captive breeding programs, Wellington Zoo is home to a menagerie of native and exotic wildlife, including lions and tamarins. The nocturnal house has kiwi and tuatara. ‘Close encounters’ allow you to meet the big cats, red pandas, giraffes and mischievous meerkats (for a fee). The zoo is 4km south of the city; catch the Newtown bus (No 10).