The Best Live Music Venues in Wellington, New Zealand

Photo of Ayse Huseyin
12 October 2016

Wellington, sprawled on the tip of New Zealand’s North Island, is a multicultural hub and an artistic city. Throughout the city, local and international musical talent is showcased and embraced, whether in intimate settings over a drink or in interactive dance spaces. Here is our guide to the city’s best live music venues.


Bodega is a live music and food establishment that caters for private and public events, so, no matter the occasion, a great night is guaranteed. They hire out their venue to groups who favor an eclectic range of music genres. The venue hosts up to 570 people for events that perfect the balance between intimacy and a lively crowd. They also take great pride in showcasing local, undiscovered talent, so stop by for something exciting and new.

Hours: Tuesday to Wednesday 4:00 p.m. – 12:00 a.m.; Thursday to Saturday 4:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m.
Bodega, 101 Ghuznee St, Wellington 6011, New Zealand, +64 4384 8212

The Rogue & Vagabond

Attention dog lovers, The Rogue & Vagabond is definitely the place for you, as they openly welcome dogs and their owners to relax and lounge outside of their venue on Cuba Street. With various draft beers on tap, many delicious snacks, and a wide array of live musical acts performing all genres, there’s little not to like here. The décor of the venue is psychedelic and colorful, creating a fun and expressive space.

Hours: Check their website
The Rogue & Vagabond, 18 Garrett St, Te Aro, Wellington, +64 4381 2321


From hosting their own jazz festival, to nights with a distinctly rock ‘n’ roll vibe, Meow is the place to be on any day of the week. A restaurant bar during the day, Meow also boasts an extensive calendar of events. Their intimate venue backs onto floor to ceiling windows that cast the performers in striking silhouettes and evokes the open and creative space of an art studio. The venue is spacious with minimal furnishing and high ceilings where you can really immerse yourself in the local talent on show.

Hours: Check their website
Meow, 9 Edward St, Te Aro, Wellington 6011, New Zealand, +64 4385 8883

Old St Paul's

Map View
This is a venue that offers a more traditional experience for its guests. Though no longer a parish church, Old St Paul’s is still committed to beautiful and cultural events that aim to unite the community. It’s a popular wedding venue, as well as hosting musical and choral recitals all year, especially during both Christian and Māori holidays as part of their commitment to bi-cultural appreciation of indigenous and local residents.

Hours: Mon-Sun 9.30am-5pm; check their website for a listing of upcoming concerts

Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant

Bar, Restaurant, European, Vegetarian, $$$
Map View
Southern Cross Garden Bar and Restaurant has been a favorite meeting place on Cuba Street for a century, and is a venue that prides itself in having something for everyone. In terms of live music, you’re able to rent out the venue for parties and functions, as well as attend those that the owners put on free of charge throughout the week. New Zealand is a country that takes pride in its people, as evidenced by this venue that hosts local undiscovered talent — there’s no better place to discover a new favorite act.

Hours: Monday to Thursday 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.; Friday & Saturday 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 a.m.; Sunday 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 a.m.

The Library

Bar, Cocktail Bar, Pub Grub, Dessert, $$$
Map View
Drinks and literature
Drinks and literature | Courtesy of The Library

The blissful marriage of live music and literature is brought to life here at the Library. Enjoy gourmet food, cocktails, live music every Tuesday and Thursday, and an excellent book. Whether you’re after a mouth-watering meal, delectable dessert, or one of the Library’s many world-class wines, you can enjoy your live music experience in any way you want.

Hours: Monday to Thursday 5:00 p.m. – Late; Friday to Sunday 4:00 p.m. – Late

San Fran

San Fran in Wellington is a venue that shows genuine love for great service and live music. Though traditionally a more rock ‘n’ roll establishment, in recent years it has broadened its demographic to welcome a far more diverse range of musical genres. The San Fran also serves pizzas, snacks, and an array of beverages.

Hours: Tuesday to Thursday 3:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m.; Friday & Saturday 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 a.m.
San Fran, 171 Cuba Street ,Wellington, New Zealand, +64 4801 6797

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