News | 30 January 2023
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Wellington ready to rock this week

Over 50,000 people are set to eat, drink, play, slay, laugh, dance, applaud, and perform in Wellington this week – with more than 33,000 of those, visitors to the region.

Portrait of Ed Sheeran looking at the camera while resting chin on tattooed arms on table.
Ed Sheeran

Mayor Tory Whanau says this week will be a massive boost to our local economy, hospitality industry, and the general vibe of the city.

“Thousands of people will be heading into central Wellington over the week, and they’ll be enjoying all the city has to offer including restaurants, bars, cafes, shopping and sightseeing,” says the Mayor.

There will be eight cruise ships visiting the capital and a whopping six major events, headlined by the record-breaking Ed Sheeran concert at Sky Stadium. There will also be whānau friendly celebrations for Waitangi weekend, Fat Boy Slim entertaining at the Botanic Garden’s ki Paekākā’s Anderson Park, and comedians Sarah Millican and Tom Segura will be bringing the lols to sold-out crowds.

“The city will be the busiest it has been since Eminem was in town in 2019, so there are plans in place to make sure everyone has a great time – and a safe time,” adds the Mayor.

On Thursday alone, around 54,000 people are expected to descend on the CBD. The bulk of them will be heading to Ed Sheeran’s sold-out Sky Stadium concert, with a record-breaking 46,234 people attending. Serenading punters walking to the stadium along the waterfront will be a variety of musical artists from TSB Arena’s balcony from 4pm. There will also be two cruise ships visiting the capital that day. 

Four people on a crocodile bike, dressed up in sombrero hats.
Summer Sampler

WellingtonNZ’s CEO John Allen says weeks like this is when Wellington comes to the fore, an electric atmosphere takes over the city and everyone feeds on the energy.

“We know many of you will want to soak it up eating out, or watching the plethora of free entertainment, so it’s worth booking at your favourite spot so you don’t miss out.

“Apart from being prepared, my advice is to get out there, have a lot of fun, and as Gen Z says, slay the week.”

With so much going on, the city will be busy, so be patient and where possible it’s recommended to leave your car at home and bike, walk, scoot or take public transport to events.

Check out for public transport information and Council’s social media channels on updates for Waitangi Day events.

By the numbers

Wednesday 1st Feb

Cruise ship Ovation of the Seas, 4180 passenger capacity plus crew

Sarah Millican, St James – sold out


Thursday 2nd Feb

Ed Sheeran +-=÷x tour, Sky Stadium – 46,234 ticket holders – 35 per cent from out of the region

Waterfront performances from 4pm to 6pm including Zoe Moon and Earth Tongue by TSB Arena, a DJ over the water in the Kumutoto Precinct, and a four-piece brass band roaming from Frank Kitts Park to the stadium

Cruise ship Majestic Princess 3650 pax and Grand Princess 3100 passengers, both plus crew


Friday 3rd Feb

Tom Segura, The Opera House – sold out

Fatboy Slim, Anderson Park – sold out

Cruise ships Pacific Explorer 1998 pax, Silver Whisper 388 Viking Mars 930 pax, all plus crew


Saturday 4th Feb

Sol3 MIO with award-winning artists Hollie Smith and Ria Hall, Anderson Park (CANCELLED)

Wellington Summer Sampler along the waterfront


Sunday 5th Feb

Whānau Film Night, Waitangi Park, 6pm – 9pm, public free event

Cruise ship Zuiderdam with 2272 pax capacity plus crew

Wellington Summer Sampler along the waterfront


Monday 6th Feb

Te Rā o Waitangi – Waitangi Park and Wellington Waterfront, 12 noon – 6pm, public free event

Viking Neptune, 930 passengers plus crew


Road Closures for Ed Sheeran

Traffic restrictions will be in place before and after the show. 

  • Road closures are as follows from approx. 4pm:
    • Bunny Street closed at Featherston Street end
    • No right turn closure from Waterloo Quay, southbound onto Bunny Street
    • Stout Street, no right turn onto Bunny Street
    • Featherston Street left lane closed south of Mulgrave Street to Whitmore Street
    • Featherston Street, no left turn onto Bunny Street.
  • In addition to the above closures listed, further road closures are in place from 7pm and will end once pedestrian levels have returned to normal:
    • Stout Street, no right turn onto Bunny Street and Featherston Street
    • Thorndon Quay closed between Davis Street and Mulgrave Street
    • Mulgrave Street closed between Aitken Street and intersection of Thorndon Quay/Featherston Street
    • Lane closures on Aotea Quay
    • Featherston Street closed from Mulgrave Street to Whitmore Street.

Click here for a full list of road closures.