INSIDE: Check out the hands-on Kids Activities at Auckland Maritime Museum
If there’s a Maritime Museum in town, we don’t miss it.
It wasn’t always this way. We used to avoid them.
Maritime Museums sound boring, BUT they are not.
If you are looking for things to do in Auckland with kids, put the Auckland Maritime Museum on your list.
- 1 Auckland Maritime Museum
- 2 New Zealand Maritime Museum Auckland for the Kids
- 3 Auckland Maritime Museum Shop
- 4 The Inside Scoop – Maritime Museum Auckland
- 5 Map of Auckland Maritime Museum Location
- 6 Toadstool Rating – Maritime Museum in Auckland
- 7 Looking for More Things to Do in Auckland New Zealand for Kids?
Auckland Maritime Museum
The Auckland Maritime Museum didn’t let us down. There’s heaps of hands-on fun and activities for kids that will keep them occupied for hours.
It starts outside, with a look at some of the working boats docked in the harbour. It is possible to book a short trip around the Waitemata Harbour on one of their heritage vessels but you need to check times before you go. We just missed the last boat of the day. (Sailing trips are not included in the entry price.)
Inside the building, there’s two levels.
On the ground floor:
- check out the Landfalls exhibition featuring the pioneering voyages of discovery
- watch a historical film in the theatre
- delve into the history of New Zealand’s yachting history in Blue Water Black Magic
- walk through an interactive exhibition sharing stories of the early immigrants to New Zealand in New Beginnings.
On the top floor:
- see the tribute to Sir Peter Blake and his lifetime of yachting adventures
- walk through the Edmiston Gallery full of New Zealand’s finest collection of maritime art
- reminisce with a look inside a traditional Kiwi summer house (Bach), drive a ferry, and check out an old-fashioned dairy (milkbar) exhibition
- take a look at model displays, and see beautiful examples of Kiwi boats from the past
New Zealand Maritime Museum Auckland for the Kids
Here’s a sneak peek into some of the hands-on activities for kids at the New Zealand Maritime Museum in Auckland.
- Know your Knots Challenge – this Scout of mine had a head start, but his brother wasn’t far behind in tying a fancy knot or two. Follow the instructions and it’s easy to do.
- Puzzle Room – a table full of nautical puzzles and Maori cultural puzzles
- Stories from the Sea was our favourite section. The moving ship experience, featuring interactive storytelling in the sleeping berth of the ship where passengers huddled through treacherous sea journeys, is epic!
- Blue Water Black Magic – in the far right corner of this exhibition, beyond the America’s Cup challenger boat, is a hands-on sailing activity. 4 or 5 kids (and adults) can join in together to make this virtual ship sail in the right direction.
- In the same exhibition, there’s a Design a Yacht digital activity, and another where you can practice catching the wind
- Upstairs, the Kiwis and the Coast exhibition has a virtual ferry boat to drive, some of the best examples of vintage boats you’ll ever see, and detailed model boats to view.
- Head to the Model Makers outside the main building to see model makers in action too.
The Maritime Museum also offers more fun activities every school holiday.
You can easily spend 2-3 hours here, and probably more.
Auckland Maritime Museum Shop
There’s very cute Kiwiana souvenirs at the Museum shop, including unique gifts for family and friends at home, including maritime themed toys, books and homewares, artworks, or a classic piece of Kiwiana (get the teatowel!)
Allow 30 minutes extra.
The Inside Scoop – Maritime Museum Auckland
Correct at time of publication. Please check with venue for updates. We apologise in advance if there have been any changes we are unaware of.
Address: The Maritime Museum in Auckland is located on Corner Quay and Hobson Streets in the Viaduct Harbour in Auckland.
Telephone: + 64 9 373 0800
Website: Click here
Opening Hours: 10am to 5pm every day except Christmas Day. Final entry is at 4pm. Allow 2-3 hours. More if joining a sailing tour.
- Adult $20 ($50 including heritage sailing experience)
- Seniors $17 ($40 including heritage sailing experience)
- Student $17 with valid ID ($40 including heritage sailing experience)
- Child 5- 14 $10 ($25 including heritage sailing experience)
- Children under four FREE
- Family Pass** $40 ($95 including heritage sailing experience)
** 2 adults and 2 children, OR 1 adult and 3 children
Harbour Sailing includes a one hour heritage sailing trips on Ted Ashby. This boat heads out twice a day, six days a week.
There are two other sailings on offer from time to time also. Read more here. All sailings subject to weather conditions and availability.
How to get there:
- By Bus: Catch a local bus to Auckland CBD and exit at the Viaduct Harbour.
- On Foot: The Maritime Museum is a five minute walk from the Britomart Transport Centre, and a two-minute walk from the ferry terminal.
- By Car: From Auckland airport, the Maritime Museum is 25 minutes by car in the heart of Auckland CBD at the water end of Queen Street and turn left.
Parking: Car parking in the Downtown car park next door. Discount vouchers are available from the Museum Shop.
Map of Auckland Maritime Museum Location
Nearest takeaway coffee and/or food options: Plenty of cafes and restaurants nearby in the Harbour, or head up Queen street for our favourite Popa’s Pretzels!
Toilets: Yes, multiple toilet blocks throughout museum, including baby change table
Disability access: Yes
Closest ATM: Auckland CBD
Closest playground: Myers Park playground
- There’s FREE wifi throughout the museum
- No touching, eating or drinking please
Auckland Maritime Museum was last reviewed in October 2018.
Toadstool Rating – Maritime Museum in Auckland
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