Wellington is the capital of New Zealand, which was once a British colony. The city is named after the British leader Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, who led Britain to victory at the Battle of Waterloo (1815).

Before Europeans discovered New Zealand, the country was inhabited by the Māori, who first settled there between 1250 and 1300. They named the country 'Aotearoa', which means "long white cloud". 'Te Whanganui-a-Tara' is the Māori name for Wellington, which translates as "the great harbour of Tara". Tara was a son of the Polynesian explorer Whatonga, whose descendants lived in the area.

Arthur Wellesley was named the Duke of Wellington after the town of Wellington in the English county of Somerset. In 1840, settlers of the New Zealand Company suggested naming the city Wellington in recognition of the Duke's strong support for the company. Wellington eventually became the capital in 1865. Before then, Auckland was the capital. It is the southernmost capital city in the world.

Wellington is at the south end of the North Island of New Zealand. It is separated from the South Island by the Cook Strait. The city is hilly with a deep harbour. Recent films shot partly or wholly in Wellington include the 'Lord of The Rings' trilogy (2001-2003), 'King Kong' (2005) and 'Avatar' (2009).

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