Friends Takeover: Access All Areas

A night where Friends of Te Papa get the whole museum to themselves. Go behind-the-scenes, hear from our experts, listen to live music, shop, eat and drink, and experience the museum like no-one else.

  • When | Āhea Thu 27 Jun 2019, 6.30pm–9.30pm
  • Where | Ki hea
    All areas of Te Papa
  • Cost | Te utu General entry is free for Friends members please RSVP. Extra cost for tours
Book now

If you’re not a member and want to attend sign up to be a Friend of Te Papa today.

All areas of the museum will be open for you to explore including:

  • Te Taiao | Nature
  • Toi Art
  • Ko Rongowhakaata: The Story of Light and Shadow
  • Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War
  • Espresso café – grab some nibbles and drinks at a special discount
  • The stores – open for you to use your Friends discount and to try samples from local artisans
  • and the mezzanine library –  usually only open by appointment.

You’ll receive a free welcome drink on arrival and there’ll be live music throughout the evening.

Visitors in Toi Art


Portrait wall in Tūrangawaewae: Art and New Zealand, 2018. Te Papa (103741)

Short talks

Free with entry. No bookings necessary.


Store, Level 1

Publishing books in a museum context

– Te Papa Press Editor Nicola Legat

Te Papa Press


Te Papa Hui, Level 2

Secrets of Kohanga | Nest

– Curator Vertebrates Colin Miskelly



Toi Art, Level 5

The works of Janet Lilo & Tiffany Singh

– Curator Contemporary Art Nina Tonga



Reading Room, Level 4

Co-collecting in Pacific communities

– Senior Curator Pacific Histories & Cultures Sean Mallon



Reading Room, Level 4

Representing LGBTQI+ communities in museum collections

–History Curators Katie Cooper and Claire Regnault



Reading Room, Level 4

Redeveloping our Māori exhibitions

– Head of Mātauranga Māori Puawai Cairns



Reading Room, Level 4

Through the lens of our rare books
From Cook to creatures, teeth marks to marbling

– Librarian Martin Lewis


All evening

Hīnātore, Level 4

A sneak-peek into Te Papa’s learning lab, Hīnātore

Ever tried virtual reality (VR) or augmented reality (AR)? Here’s your chance!


Rare book tour


Rare book tour collection tour, 2015. Photograph by Michael Hall. Te Papa (25412)

Paid behind-the-scenes tours

$10–$20 tours, booking registration required

Making eagles and moas

30 minutes


Model Maker Jake Yocum describes the process of recreating models of the extinct Haast’s eagle and moa.

Book the 6.50pm tour 

Book the 7.30pm tour

Gallipoli: The Scale of Our War

30 minutes


History curator Stephanie Gibson highlights some of her favourite objects in the exhibition.

Book the 6.50pm tour

Book the 7.30pm tour

How we digitise our collection objects

30 minutes


Go behind the scenes into our imaging lab with Imaging Manager Michael O’Neill. See how our taonga are photographed, 3D scanned, and digitised for Collections Online.

Book the 6.50pm tour

Book the 7.30pm tour

Into our art store

60 minutes


Unearth Friends of Te Papa contributions to the museum’s vast and vibrant art collection with Curators Rebecca Rice and Justine Olsen.   

Book the 7pm tour  

Book the 8pm tour

How to display precious taonga

30 minutes


Conservator Robert Clendon shares the various methods and expertise that was involved in displaying the specimens in Te Taiao | Nature – including the colossal squid!

Book the 6.50pm tour

Book the 7.30pm tour

The art of painting and textile conservation

30 minutes


Discover the technologies used by conservators to care for our precious collections with Textiles Conservator Anne Peranteau and Paintings Conservator Linda Waters.

Book the 6.50pm tour


Book the 7.30pm tour

Man makes a full-size Haast’s eagle model


Making the Haast’s eagle, 2019. Te Papa

Behind the scenes in the art store


Behind the scenes in the art store, 2017. Te Papa


This evening is free and exclusive for Friends members.

Please RSVP through the Friends of Te Papa website (at the bottom of the page) and bring your membership number on arrival.

The evening is free for Friends members and you can bring along non-members for $20 – they will need to provide your membership number and need to RSVP.

Arrive whenever you like from 6.30pm and enjoy a welcome drink on arrival in the Wellington Foyer.

Not a member?

If you’re not a member and want to attend, please join Friends of Te Papa.

The individual membership price is either $40 (non-Wellington based) or $50 (Wellington based) per year.

We’d love you to join and support Our Place.

Using AR


Trying out new technology in Hīnātore, 2018. Photo by Kate Whitley. Te Papa (113791)