Being a tourist in your own city: Thorndon village

When you live somewhere, you often take a lot of things for granted.  I sometimes forget how privileged I am to be able to walk to work through the Botanic Gardens and part of Thorndon on my way to work. Thorndon is one of New Zealand’s oldest suburbs, and is home to Parliament, two cathedrals, Katherine Mansfield’s house and the Prime Minister’s residence. Along Tinakori Road you will find a collection of restaurants, antique shops, pubs and other businesses, such as a musical instrument shop and florist.  There is a Christmas Fair here too every year.  The street has featured in many blog posts in one way or another, but here is a quick overview of some of the things you can find.

Tinakori Road – note the trolley bus cables still in place.  Soon to be removed. Tinakori Bistro where we were recently for dinner on the left.

The street is marked with quotes from famous New Zealanders who have had some connection to the area, and it is worth taking time to stop and read these as you walk up and down the street.

Quotes on the pavement
Entrance to Doppio Bakery and Cafe, with Sprig and Fern pub on the right, where we sometimes do the Tuesday night pub quiz
Cosa Nostra – one of our local favourites
The Shepherds’ Arms pub and hotel
Some of the houses
The place with the best brunch – Hillside Kitchen and Cellar
Look out for historic homes
Looking down Tinakori Road
The florist
The book shop and gallery

So should you ever happen to be in Wellington, then pop by this lovely little part of town, and enjoy a beer, a coffee or a cake before, or after, visiting the Botanic Gardens.

You can find Thistles and Kiwis on Facebook, and also on Instagram @thistleandkiwis.  As for Twitter….am totally inactive these days.  If you want to get in touch, email me on


  1. “Being a tourist in your own city”, I love that! I think that’s an interesting statement, because I think everybody will always have some spot in their city or town that they haven’t been to and want to explore! Great post! xx


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