The Wellington Region (also known as Greater Wellington) is a local government region of New Zealand that occupies the southern end of the North Island. It includes the cities (in order of population) of Wellington, Lower Hutt, Porirua and Upper Hutt, plus smaller towns.
The Māori who originally settled the region knew it as Te Upoko o te Ika a Māui, meaning "the head of Māui's fish". Legend recounts that Kupe discovered and explored the region in about the tenth century.
The region was settled by Europeans in 1839 by the New Zealand Company. Wellington became the capital of Wellington Province upon the creation of the province in 1853, until the Abolition of the Provinces Act came into force on 1 Nov 1876. Wellington became capital of New Zealand in 1865, the third capital after Russell and Auckland.