Our doors are open again but when you’re in need of an at-home Museum fix, experience some of the best parts of Tāmaki Paenga Hira here. Watch how volcanoes are made, make an exotic bird case come alive in a puzzle, deep dive into one of our blogs or discover some fun and educational activities to entertain the kids. Spend some time with us online today. Our collections are here for you to explore.

 

We regularly update this page with new videos, blog posts and childrens’ activities, so keep coming back to see what’s new.

For the kids

For the kids

Boredom busters for inquisitive minds! Have a go at our interactive games, download activities to do offline and watch fun and educational videos made just for kids.

ready, set, go!

Explore our collections online

Explore our collections online

Many of our incredible Human History, Natural Sciences and Documentary Heritage objects can be viewed and explored online. View a Crown Lynn online exhibition, visit our Museum virtually or get inspired with the many ways you can use images of our objects at home.

check it out

Collecting Covid-19: 100 Lockdown Objects

Collecting Covid-19: 100 Lockdown Objects

We're collecting Covid-19 material and we need your help. To find out what we're looking for and how to donate, visit this page.

find out more

Celebrating New Zealand Music Month

Celebrating New Zealand Music Month

May is New Zealand Music Month, which will be a bit different this year. Check out our videos and collection items celebrating Music Month.

TAKE A LOOK

Take a virtual tour

Take a virtual tour

We've opened up our exhibition archives for you to explore.

Come on in

 Pacific Language Weeks 2020

Pacific Language Weeks 2020

We are working closely with New Zealand’s Pacific communities to maintain and promote heritage language.

See how here

Auckland Museum online jigsaw puzzles

How well do you know Auckland Museum?
QUIZ

How well do you know Auckland Museum?

Find out how much you know about Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland War Memorial Museum, through this quiz.

Take the quiz

CSI Lockdown - Results

CSI Lockdown - Results

During lockdown, we asked Aucklanders to help our Natural Sciences and Learning Teams. The Citizen Scientists Initiative, or CSI, invited people to photograph animal and plant life in their backyards and out on their daily walks, and share it to the iNaturalist platform, which allows scientists to communicate with these intrepid discoverers.

The results were inspiring. Locals uncovered a range of strange and wonderful wildlife, from the Common Bird-Dropping Spider to a type of fungi known as the 'Potato Earthball'. The green lacewing (insect), which our Curator of Entomology discovered last year, was unearthed in another part of Auckland, while another Kiwi discovered the first known record of the Myrianida pachycera, or Marine polychaete worm.

There have been 600 observations recorded of more than 323 different species. Of these, 22 percent were plants, 34 percent molluscs, 15 percent insects, four percent spiders, seven percent fungi and four percent birds. It's testament to the incredible biodiversity we can find right under our noses!

A reminder from our scientists - Autumn is a great time to spot fungi out and about. You never know what could pop up overnight!  Find out how to become a Citizen Scientist here.

Eid sa’id, Happy Eid!

Eid sa’id, Happy Eid!

With the sighting of the new crescent moon, Muslims around Aotearoa and the world have been celebrating Eid al Fitr, or the Festival of Breaking the Fast. Eid al Fitr celebrates the end of the holy month of Ramadan, the lunar month in which the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammed.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Ramadan observances are being conducted differently this year, however as we emerge from lockdown, the Ramadan message of charity, empathy and compassion is one we can all embody and practice.

Auckland Museum has many beautiful objects from the Muslim world in its collections. This dish is from Iznik, a town in present day Turkey, east of Istanbul. In the 16th and 17th century it was a centre for ceramics producing beautiful and distinctive Iznik ware. Other examples of Iznik ware are currently on view in the Arts of Asia Gallery. Now that we have reopened, why not visit the Museum and take a look?

Be kind New Zealand. Kia kaha! Eid Mubarak!


Image credit: Dish, Iznik, Turkey, 16th Century, Ceramic, polychrome paint under transparent glaze. Collection of the Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira K1850.
International Museum Week - Unsung Heroes

International Museum Week - Unsung Heroes

Around the world as part of International Museum Week, Museums are celebrating heroes, people who have helped to look after us all during this time. For Auckland Museum, we have an unsung hero who has been keeping our taonga safe.

A master of collection care, with more than 15 years’ working with Auckland Museum's collections, Craig undertakes the essential task of looking after our precious taonga every day while our doors are closed. As well as checking in on objects across the galleries, Craig also makes sure everything is ship shape in our collection storage rooms, of which there are more than 20!

What does he do to keep them safe? Craig sorts anything that poses a threat to the safety of our collections, from pesky pest activity to sneaky leaks, so the objects in our care can continue to tell stories of Auckland, Aotearoa and beyond for future generations to come.

Flour power

Flour power

New Zealand supermarkets have seen an unprecedented demand on flour, and the disruption to restocking has been largely due to delays in printing the paper packaging. But our flour wasn’t always packed this way. In the late 19th century and well into the 20th, New Zealand’s flour mills sold their flour in cotton sacks which were printed with the brand of the mill, like this flour bag from Partington’s Mill. From 1850 until its demolition in 1950, the Partington’s windmill was a distinctive landmark on the corner of Karangahape Road and Symonds Street. Partington’s Mill may be gone but other remnants of Auckland’s flour milling industry remain, like the Northern Roller Mills building on downtown Fort Street which has since been converted into apartments.

Image credit: Partington’s Mill Flour bag. AWMM. History collection.

Aunt Daisy's Hot Cross Bun Recipe

Aunt Daisy's Hot Cross Bun Recipe

This Hot Cross and Cold Cross Bun recipe is from Aunt Daisy's Cookery Book of Approved Recipes.

Maud Ruby Basham (30 August 1879 – 14 July 1963), professionally known as Aunt Daisy, was a well-loved New Zealand radio broadcaster. Her 30 minute daily morning show ran from 1933 to 1963. Her role was primarily to promote household products and to boost morale during World War II.

Try out this recipe and it might just boost morale in your household. Hot Cross Buns best served hot with lashings of butter.

HOT CROSS AND COLD CROSS BUNS
1oz. yeast, 5oz. butter, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, ½ level teaspoon grated nutmeg, ¼ level teaspoon ground cloves, ¼ level teaspoon ground ginger, ½ lb. currants, 1 egg, 5oz. castor sugar, 1 ½ lb. flour, ¼ lb. mixed peel, ¾ pint milk.

Put yeast into small basin. Add 1 teaspoon sugar to it, mix them together until they liquefy. Warm ¼ pt. milk and add it to them. Sift 4oz. flour into large basin. Strain in yeast mixture, and mix to smooth batter. Throw cloth over basin, stand in warm place 30 to 45 minutes. Meanwhile wash, pick over, dry the fruit, and shred peel. Sift remainder of flour into another basin with spices. Rub in the fat, add sugar and prepared fruit. Mix them well together. When yeast mixture is ready, gradually stir into it other prepared ingredients, adding also beaten egg and remainder if milk made warm. Mix them al together, beat well. Then throw cloth over basin, put mixture in warm place to rise until it swells to double its bulk. Will take about 1 ½ hour. When dough is ready, turn on to floured board and divide into 36 portions. Work each portion in smooth bun shape. Place buns on lightly greased and floured baking sheets, leaving space between each to allow to rise. Mark a cross on buns. Cover buns lightly with a cloth and stand in warm place for 20mins or until they are double their size. Put them in fairly hot oven to bake. They will take about 20 mins to cook.

For Glaze for Hot Cross Buns: 1 dessertspoon castor sugar, 2 dessertspoons milk.
Icing for Cold Cross Buns: 6oz, icing sugar, about 2 dessertspoons boiling water.

Image Credit: Aunt Daisy’s cookery book of approved recipes, 1934. AWMM. TX725.N5 DAI.

Where does the Good in Good Friday originate?

Where does the Good in Good Friday originate?

Good Friday is the day when Christians commemorate the crucifixion and death of Jesus, who they believe sacrificed his life as atonement for all sin. In ancient Rome, the form of execution was crucifixion, where the victim's hands and feet were bound and nailed to a cross, as depicted on the enamel missal cover from the Museum's Applied Arts and Design collection.

There are various sources that explain why the word 'good' is used to describe a sorrowful event; some speculate it to be a corruption of 'God's Friday,' others suggest that 'good' denotes the day as a holy day. The Oxford English Dictionary states that the word 'good' within Christian context is used as an adjective to designate a day on which a religious observation is held.

Image credit: Missal Cover, Crucifixion of Christ rendered in champlevé enamel, Limoges, France, 13th Century. Auckland War Memorial Museum, M133, 1944.83.

Easter egg symbolism

Easter egg symbolism

Since ancient times, the egg has been seen as a symbol of life and rebirth. In Christianity, the egg became associated with Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection and became a symbol of Easter. The tradition of Easter eggs originated in early Mesopotamia, where chicken eggs were dyed red in memory of the blood Christ shed when he was crucified. Although egg dyeing is still a popular activity for kids and adults alike during Easter, modern alternatives includes chocolate eggs and candy filled in egg-shaped containers - while the Russian imperial family had jewelled Easter eggs for them by the House of Fabergé from 1885 to 1916.

Image credit: Collection of Auckland Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira, gift of Mr Harry S Dadley, 1934.316, K3122, 20734.

Journeys in the Wild with Gavin Thurston

Join Gavin Thurston, the award-winning cameraman of David Attenborough’s series, Blue Planet II and Planet Earth II, as he shares his extraordinary and adventurous true stories of tracking and filming our planet's most captivating creatures.

Commemorating Anzac Day at Home

Commemorating Anzac Day at Home

In 2020, during Alert Level 4 due to Covid-19, we marked Anzac Day at home. Check out the things we did, here.

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