Discovery Centres
Te Papa Tamariki

It’s play time! Families get hands-on with educational exhibits, games, and books.

Ages: Up to 12 years. Children must be accompanied by an adult
Times: 10am–6pm, every day of the year
Cost: Free

Discover one of Wellington’s best educational activities for children and families – Te Papa’s Discovery Centres.

Explore, touch, play, ask questions, research, and learn. Pick a room to suit your whānau’swhānau’s family’s interests, then get hands-on with educational exhibits, games, and books.

Ask a friendly Host  for help with ideas and information, or delve deeper into each subject with our themed reference books and magazines. Discovery Centres are so much more than play areas …

NatureSpace, Level 2

Step inside a dinosaur footprint, crawl into a whale heart, inspect an insect under a microscope, find a fossil, and much more. At NatureSpace Discovery Centre, our natural environment takes centre stage!

Girls playing in the model whale heart, 2015. Photograph by Michael Hall. Te Papa

Caption

Girls playing in the model whale heart, 2015. Photograph by Michael Hall. Te Papa

Te Huka ā Tai, Level 4

Celebrate te ao Māori (the Māori world) at Te Huka ā Tai Discovery Centre. Try your hand at weaving, play games with tī rākautī rākau rhythm sticks, dress up and practise poipoi balls on cords, and walk on stilts. TaongaTaonga treasures old and new are on display, and you can find reference books in the research room.

Manu-aute (kite), titled ’Kimihia Te Manu Kahu’, 1997, by Papahuia Flax Papers Artist Collective. Purchased 1998. Te Papa (ME016932)

Caption

Manu-aute (kite), titled ’Kimihia Te Manu Kahu’, 1997, by Papahuia Flax Papers Artist Collective. Purchased 1998. Te Papa (ME016932)

Inspiration Station, Level 4

Ogle at our Big Baby, the ‘It’ Monster, and the ever-changing display of Delectable Collectables at Inspiration Station Discovery Centre. Fun art and history activities include playing shop in the Kiwi Corner Store, and creating a Flash New You with our funky range of dress ups.

Boy playing

Caption

Boy playing in Inspiration Station, 2016. Photograph by Mike O'Neill. Te Papa

PlaNet Pasifika, Level 4

Bang a drum or strum a ukulele, make a leilei flower necklace, or just chill out with a good book. PlaNet Pasifika showcases the diversity of expression and creativity among the people of Pacific Island nations.

Learn about different celebrations, body adornment and the cultural importance of tattoo, as well as tīvaevaetīvaevae quilt-making and tapatapa bark cloth.

PlaNet Pasifika 2015. Photographed by Michael Hall, ©Te Papa

Caption

PlaNet Pasifika 2015. Photograph by Michael Hall. Te Papa