E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā waka, tena koutou
E ngā whānau o Tāmaki Paenga Hira tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā tatou katoa.
Nau Mai, Haere Mai, ki Te Ao Mārama  

Welcome to Te Ao Mārama, Auckland War Memorial Museum’s South Atrium cultural and hospitality precinct. More than just a museum entry and exit; our South Atrium combines mana whenua welcome, cultural orientation and generous hospitality. 

Three years ago, we came together to fulfill a vision, to create a space for all Aucklanders and visitors to our city to enjoy. Our vision for Te Ao Mārama has centered on manaakitanga and kaitiakitanga. Te Ao Mārama marks a milestone for Auckland Museum in creating a precinct dedicated to cultural welcome, orientation and tikanga. It delivers a step change for you, our visitors in terms of museum hospitality and retail experiences. 

What you will experience is the result of our deliberate intention to connect the past, present and future of this much-loved cultural destination. The Museum now has two strong and distinctive entry experiences, one marking the Museum’s history and global heritage, and the other celebrating our place in twenty first century Auckland and Aotearoa. The new western and eastern walkways seamlessly connect the 1929 building to its 21st-century evolution.   

Architecturally, we have delivered on the vision that began a decade and a half ago to fully reveal the Tanoa, the kava bowl in all its visual impact and rich cultural symbolism. The mana of the Tānoa has been brought to life. Te Ao Mārama not only reinforces the Museum’s connection with the cultural landscape of Pukekawa – it acknowledges the ancestral and contemporary connections of Tāmaki Makaurau to the wider Moana Pacific. This is a uniquely Auckland development. Nowhere else in Aotearoa New Zealand would it make sense. It cements the Museums civic role as a social and cultural anchorage for the communities it serves.

This Museum is here because of the generosity of many, from its foundation in 1852, right through to today and indeed for future generations. We are proud to provide you with a museum befitting the country’s largest city, and we thank you for your ongoing support.  

The best way to appreciate the scale of what has been achieved here is to experience it for yourselves. Enjoy !

No reira, tena koutou, tena koutou, tena tatou katoa
Dr David Gaimster
Chief Executive