Spend a magical time at StoryPlace, where your preschool children and you can explore museum-related themes through play, games, stories and songs.

StoryPlace runs from Monday to Friday. Activities are led by a friendly Te Papa host and reflect New Zealand’s Early Childhood Education curriculum.



StoryPlace is designed for children aged 12 months to 5 years. We ask that those over 5 explore the museum with another adult while your preschooler enjoys StoryPlace with you. 

Tickets and times

  • 10.30am–11.15am (must buy ticket by 10.25am)
  • 11.30am–12.15pm (must buy ticket by 11.25am)
  • 1.30pm–2.15pm (must buy ticket by 1.25pm)

Buy your tickets from the Information Desk, Level 2

    • $2 per preschooler and adult
    • Babies under 12 months free but require a ticket
    • Secure a date and time by buying tickets early – up to 7 days before a session.

Our host will meet you outside StoryPlace. Please arrive promptly to avoid disappointment.

Sessions take a maximum of 25 people (preschoolers and adults). It is not uncommon for sessions to sell out quickly.

Book in advance

Booked out already this coming month:

16/3 - 20/3 = No bookings this week

23/3 - 27/3 =

* 23/3 - 10.30am booked

* 25/3 - 10.30am booked

30/3 - 3/4 =

* 2/4 - 10.30am session booked

6/4-10/4 = No bookings this week

13/4-17/4 = No bookings this week



All of our programmes are linked to the New Zealand Early Childhood Curriculum, Te Whāriki.

Transport | Ngā Waka Kanorau

5 Feb – 17 Apr 2015

DH82a Tiger Moth ZK-AJO, 1941, De Havillana (NZ) Aircraft Co. Te Papa (GH012131)

Woosh! Chugga-chugga! Vroom-vroom! Beep!

Zoom into StoryPlace and explore the busy world of transport.

Make your own wheeled creation. See how a motor works. Fly a helicopter, or assemble a train track. Sing about riding the bus all day long!

After your session, you can take off to the Air New Zealand exhibition, or even hop into a Boeing 737 cockpit in the Te Papa forecourt.

Air New Zealand 75 Years exhibition

Coming up...

  • Nature Discovery | Tūhuratia te Taiao (23 Apr - 17 July 2015)

Budding scientists! Come and discover the natural world in StoryPlace. Find out more about the creatures that make our gardens, forests, oceans, mountains and shorelines their home.


N.B. We will not be offering a Matariki themed programme in StoryPlace in 2015.

Our Early Years Matariki education programme will still available for ECE centres and Play Groups to book.

We are also scoping opportunities for museum-wide events over the Matariki period in June-July that will cater specifically to under 5's.

Birthday parties

Mat time

Make your pre-schooler’s birthday extra special. Our popular StoryPlace parties include stories, songs, dress-ups, art activities, and face painting – 45 minutes of jam-packed fun! Afterwards, enjoy a birthday meal at Te Papa Café (this is optional and extra costs apply).

You can select one of the following themes for your party:

  • Dinosaurs,
  • Fairies,
  • Jungle,
  • Pirates,
  • Princess',
  • or Transport.

Catering options

Booking details

  • Cost: $100, plus Te Papa Café catering (this is optional and extra costs apply, see above).
  • Availability: Saturdays and Sundays only, excludes school holiday periods.
  • Times: 10:30am–11:15am or 1:30pm–2:15pm.
    Your meal at the Te Papa Café will be directly after your StoryPlace session, and it will be for 1 hour.
  • Number of attendees: 25 people maximum (includes children and adults).
  • Age group: StoryPlace birthday party sessions cater for children under 5 years old.
  • Bookings: Must be made at least 7 days in advance.

Book now

Early Childhood Centres and Play Groups 


Early Childhood centres and play groups – you can join a public session at the usual cost or book an entire StoryPlace session just for you!

  • Cost: $45 for up to 15 children (minimum charge), $3 per extra child. Teachers and accompanying adults free.
    • Numbers: 25 people maximum (pre-schoolers and adults)
    • Bookings must be made with at least 7 days in advance.

Book now


– Awesome that the children had lots of time to explore. Cool idea closing the session with a story. Keep up the great work!

– Good flow for parents to be involved.

– Great length of time, lots of activities.

– Really good that kids can choose what to do and when, and don’t have to sit still all the time.

– Great props and facilitator. Thanks – the kids loved it.

– Very playful and fun. I really enjoyed it!

– Staff are great with kids!

– The programme had lots of variety and was clearly thought through.

– Lots of free active exploration, not too structured.

– It was good at the beginning to have an introduction to the theme and each other. Just long enough. Love the free play and story at end. Just perfect.

– We will be back :)