Best Museums in Auckland

A Tour of Auckland’s Top 9 Must-See Museums

Why don’t you ever want to get into an argument with a New Zealand museum curator? Because they always have the last artefact!

Jokes aside, if you’re a history buff, you’re in the right place. Auckland is teeming with museums, and we’ll share with you all the best ones.

Don’t worry, we promise not to get into any arguments with the local curators, no matter how compelling their artefacts are!

1. Auckland War Museum

Website:  Auckland War Museum

Address: Parnell, Auckland 1010, New Zealand


  • Monday & Wednesday to Friday – 10 AM to 5 PM  
  • Tuesday – 10 AM to 8:30 PM 
  • Saturday & Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM 

Phone: +64 9 309 0443


  • Adults – 28 NZD
  • Child – 14 NZD

You simply can’t visit Auckland without exploring the Auckland War Memorial Museum, or, as we lovingly call it, the “War Mo.” This majestic neo-classical building is set in the heart of the beautiful Auckland Domain and is an epicentre of New Zealand’s history and culture.

It’s home to an incredible collection of Māori and Pacific treasures and has poignant war memorial galleries. Plus, the museum boasts some of the most robust natural history sections around. And they even have an actual volcanic field simulation!

Pro Tip:
If you’re not already an Auckland Museum Institute member, you might want to consider joining. Museum members get access to tours that take you behind the scenes to parts of the museum normally closed to the public.

2. New Zealand Maritime Museum

Website: New Zealand Maritime Museum

Address:  Corner of Quay and Hobson Street, Auckland 1140, New Zealand

Hours: Monday to Sunday – 10 AM to 5 PM 

Phone: +64 9 373 0800


  • Adults $ 24
  • Seniors/Students $19
  • Children (5 – 14 years) $12
  • Family Pass $58

The New Zealand Maritime Museum is positioned right at the water’s edge, in the vibrant Viaduct Harbour. This gem is often overlooked by tourists, but it’s a key part of our seafaring history.

The exhibits cover everything marine, from the first Polynesian voyagers and settlers to modern-day yacht racing. The museum has full-size replicas of various vessels, including a Maori war canoe (waka taua). 

It’s not just about looking, though. Make sure you take advantage of the unique opportunity to sail around the harbour on a heritage vessel.

Pro Tip:
The museum offers free entry for Auckland residents, but you need to bring proof of your address.

3. Museum of Transport and Technology

Website: Museum of Transport and Technology

Address:  805 Great North Road, Western Springs, Auckland 1022, New Zealand

Hours: Monday to Sunday – 10 AM to 4 PM 

Phone: +64 9 815 5800


  • Adults – 19 NZD
  • Children -10 NZD

The Museum of Transport and Technology, locally known as MOTAT, is a paradise for tech and transport enthusiasts. It houses an extensive collection of trams, planes, and automobiles and offers a fascinating look into New Zealand’s technological evolution.

Want to step back in time? You’ll love the old Victorian Village, where you’ll get a feel for the daily life of Aucklanders in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Trust us, MOTAT is not just about gazing at old vehicles. There are interactive exhibitions, science and aviation displays, and even a working tramway.

Pro Tip:
The museum runs an awesome ‘Live Day’ on the third Sunday of every month, where you can see exhibits like old steam engines and tractors in action.

4. Torpedo Bay Navy Museum

Website: Torpedo Bay Navy Museum

Address: 64 King Edward Parade, Devonport, Auckland 0624, New Zealand

Hours: Monday to Sunday – 10 AM to 5 PM 

Phone: +64 9 445 5186

The Torpedo Bay Navy Museum gives you a peek into New Zealand’s naval history. The museum is home to a diverse collection of artefacts, from the personal effects of sailors to full-sized torpedoes and mine models.

There’s also an array of exhibits, from the Maori’s first waka arriving on Aotearoa’s shores to the  modern-day Royal New Zealand Navy.

And the best part? Admission is free!

Pro Tip:
Do not miss out on the cafe at the museum. It offers a stunning view of Auckland Harbour, and the food is fantastic. Also, if you’re lucky, you might get to witness navy personnel performing the traditional Haka.

5. Crystal Mine Museum

Website: Crystal Mine Museum

Address: 80 Candia Road, Swanson, Auckland 0614, New Zealand

Hours: Monday to Sunday – 9 AM to 5 PM 

Phone: +64 9 833 5033

Prices: From 15 NZD

Head underground with the jaw-dropping Crystal Mine Museum. This isn’t your typical walk-around-and-point museum, folks. 

Here, you’ll delve deep into a subterranean wonderland, surrounded by thousands of glittering crystals, some of which are millions of years old! 

The museum is located right at the site of a former working mine, giving visitors a genuine taste of Auckland’s mining history. The best part is that you can touch or even hold some of these ancient treasures.

Pro Tip:
If you can, visit on a weekday. Only a handful of the visitors know that the museum’s geologist is often there on weekdays. If you’re lucky, you might just get a fascinating, free mini-lecture on the geology of the area and the formation of the crystals.

6. Huia Settlers Museum

Website: Huia Settlers Museum 

Address: 1251 Huia Road, Huia, Auckland 0604, New Zealand

Hours: Saturday & Sunday – 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM

Phone: +64 9 811 8971

This charming little gem is nestled among some of Auckland’s most stunning natural scenery, and it’s packed to the rafters with local history. 

From ancient Maori artefacts to items from the early European settlers, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time as you explore the museum’s diverse collection.

You’ll get to explore personal stories, diary entries, and old photographs that really bring Auckland’s history to life in a way few other museums can match.

Pro Tip:
Keep an eye out for their monthly history talks. You’ll get to hear fascinating stories about the area directly from historians, often accompanied by scones and tea!