Public spaces like this – which are beautiful both by day, and night, should be encouraged, in our increasingly urbanised planet.
A pretty place to be, I think you will agree. Recently, I learnt that the square was designed by visionary Wellington architect Ian Athfield, whose brilliant and sometimes odd work scatters the city (seek, and you shall find Athfield creations in Wellington’s many corners!), enriching the urban landscape. I don’t think I will ever tire of the eclectic mish-mash of buildings, old and new, which shouldn’t work together but somehow do, interesting public art, patches of soft green space, around a fully accessible multi-level square, crowned by Neil Dawson’s wonderful sculpture, Ferns. I love to spot Ferns’ shadow, at different times of the day as it dances around the space. Whether I am passing through en route home, or sitting leisurely on a bench in the sun (or, let’s face it, wind!), Wellington’s Civic Square is a fitting heart to the city which I am thankful for.
– Photo by CIA, Wellington Civic Square, March 2013. Around the square from left to right: Wellington Town Hall and Civic Chambers, The Majestic Centre (tall tower in the background), Wellington City Library, and the City Gallery.
Fridays are always a good day of the week. The weekend is just around the corner, and on a Wellington Friday when the sun is shining, worker-bees flock to the waterfront and eek out every last minute of their lunch-hour, making the most of the proximity of the CBD to the wonderful harbour. This Friday lunchtime, as we ate our lunch shading our eyes from the glint of the sunlight bouncing sharply off the sparkling water, the harbour became an aquarium before our eyes as we spotted a large stingray pass sleekly by. Surely there aren’t too many places in the world where a stingray would be your lunchtime company?!
Photo by CIA, Wellington Harbour, Wellington, New Zealand, 8 February 2013. In past weeks we have been reminded that the Wellington Harbour is so full of interesting sea-life – check out some of our other harbour wildlife encounters here and here.
CIA recently wrote of the flatness of the Netherlands, and how we never quite got comfortable with it. Wellington is not flat, indeed, it is famous for the way that the houses crowd the ridges, clustered along steep hillsides. Yesterday was a Wellington special; what I like to call a nice day, spoiled by wind. Still, you can’t see the wind in these pictures, so…
You can’t beat Wellington on a good day.
But you can lose your breath.
Photos by PJD, around Oriental Bay, near where he and CIA used to live.
Last week, PJD was lucky enough to spot a lone seal lazing on the rocky shore of Wellington harbour. The chance for random wildlife sightings is one of the things we love about living close to the beautiful harbour. There are surely not that many places where you can be in the heart of the CBD, and two minutes walk away, be able to see (if you are lucky!) creatures such as dolphins, penguins, seals, stingrays and seabirds (all of which between the two of us and our combined years living in Wellington, we have managed to encounter). So, today as we were harbourside walking as the evening was drawing in, we spotted this beautiful bird, chilling out solo at the water’s edge.