a melting pot of cultures and gateway to the eastern suburbs

Multi-cultural Kilbirnie is a relatively compact but vibrant hub of activity, the gateway to the eastern suburbs. Its substantial village area brings many into the suburb during the day where there are a full range of services. The major sporting facilities of The Regional Aquatic Centre and the ASB Indoor Sports Centre see the suburb as busy on weekends, as it is during the week. Housing here is quite intensive, especially on the valley floor and renting is popular.


Locality: East

Best suited to

Those wanting a vibrant and cosmopolitan village experience. Airport workers.

Population Profile

Culturally one of the most diverse suburbs of Wellington, Kilbirnie is a melting pot of people including above average representations of Maori, Pacific, Middle Eastern, Latin American and African background. Those of Indian origin feature as the most popular birthplace outside of New Zealand. Age groups are much on par with other Wellington suburbs, but there is a significant senior and elderly population, we suspect due to the existence of a large retirement home here. Statistics data shows that occupations are more likely to be sales workers, community workers, machinery operators and labourers, so the area certainly has a blue collar nature to it.

Typical homes

Kilbirnie contains your usual mixture of villas and bungalows, although they tend to be smaller and less grand than other Wellington localities. There are a good number of smaller cottages, set on compact sites, especially in those streets surrounding the shopping area. Califonian bungalows on average sized sites are set mostly to the south portion of the suburb, around Palm Avenue. Villas and larger homes are likely to be set on the elevated western foothills (Rodrido Road), overlooking the shopping area. There are localised areas of modern, infill housing, and the Wellington City Council is actively considering Kilbirne as an option for more intensification.



Kilbirnie has one of the largest suburban shopping areas in Wellington. The shopping area is set primarily around Bay Road and the western end of Rongotai Road. Here you’ll find almost everything you need including cafes, restaurants, bookshops, post office, supermarkets, hairdressers, clothing and footwear stores, together with most of the major banks.


Kilbirnie School is the local primary school, but is actually located just north of the suburb’s boundary, in Hamilton Road, Hataitai. Nearby Lyall Bay school has a zoning system which also allows attendance from pupils living in the Kilbirnie Area. Evans Bay intermediate in located in central Kilbirnie and covers years 6 and 7. There are three local secondary schools including St Catherine’s (girls catholic), St Patricks (boys catholic) and Rongotai College (boys state secondary).

Leisure activities

Kilbirnie is home to the Wellington Regional Aquatic Centre, a large pool complex which is used for local, national and international indoor water events. The ASB Sports Centre is a recent addition to the suburb, over 12,000 square metres with 12 sprung floor courts. The centre is used for regular sporting programs hosted by the city council, general sports leagues including basketball and netball, volleyball, floorball, futsal, handball, and korfball. The facilities can also be hired by the public. Kilbirnie Park is a large and popular outdoor space, used for both rugby and cricket. Evans Bay Marina is set to the north eastern edge of the suburb and this is used for both permanent mooring together with a launching area for pleasure boats and other water based activities.

Real Estate


Kilbirnie prices appear to have remained steady in the last 12 months. The highest recorded sale is $850,000 for a renovated, 4 bedroom 2 bathroom bungalow in popular Rodrigo Road. The elevated western foothills overlooking Kilbirnie tend to have larger character homes and this is where the highest prices are achieved. Well-proportioned family homes in this part of Kilbirnie will typically be priced from $550,000 to $850,000.

Bungalows on the valley floor will be priced on their size and condition, with very well presented homes achieving over $700,000. There are a wide variety of homes in the $400,000 to $700,000 bracket. Modern infill housing is also popular in this locality with prices for two or three bedroom units and townhouses ranging from $400,000 to early $500,000.

Kilbirnie has a number of flats, constructed in the 1960’s and 1970’s. When available these will typically sell in the $200,000 to $300,000 range.

Best Streets

Rodrigo Road, Upper Bourke Street and Naughton Terrace are all placed to the western foothills overlooking Kilbirnie. Here you are likely to find a larger, character home, possibly with views over Evans Bay.


Kilbirnie is somewhat sheltered from the prevailing northerly winds, due to Mt Victoria and the Town Belt on its northern flanks. The suburb is exposed to the south, but doesn’t tend to suffer as badly as nearby Lyall Bay, which is more exposed to the south coastline.