The best things to do in the Spring school holidays
Our pick of the best events on in the September and October school holidays
for Auckland children and families
for Auckland children and families
1. Go to the theatre to see a family show
Bruce Mason Centre, Takapuna Auckland
Friday 30 September to Monday 3 October 2016: 11:30am and 2:30pm shows
Tickets: Child $19; Adult $26; Family $80 (Children under 2 years can be admitted for free and do not require a ticket but must sit on the lap of a parent or guardian.)
2. Visit Auckland Museum at night time
Night at Auckland Museum: Time Warped SOLD OUT
Auckland Museum (Entry view Atrium, the back entrance)
Saturday 1, Wednesday 5 and Friday 7 October 2016: 6:00pm to 8:30pm
Bring a torch and your wildest imagination to explore Auckland Museum at night. Doctor When, your friendly host will lead you on a fun adventure. Tumble through time to discover what life was like in the past and what it might look like in the future. Meet Basil the Dinosaur. Design the Auckland of the future. Make real music with cardboard instruments.
Bookings recommended: Book Here
Tickets: Advance tickets $15; Door Sales $20
3. Become a detective
Hidden Treasures: Mystery at the Maritime
NZ Maritime Museum, Viaduct Harbour, Auckland
Monday 26 September to Friday 7 October 2016: 10:00am to 3:00pm
Solve the clues to one of the biggest mysteries at the Maritime museum on the detective trail FREE
Go on the treasure hunt with the museum's detective $5
Make a treasure box to keep your previous objects in at home$5
Sail on the Ted Ashby $12
4. Learn about Auckland marine life
Goat Island Marine Discovery Centre school holiday programme
Monday 26 September or Monday 3 October 2016:
Rock Pool Art for 6 to 9 year olds
Mussel Dissection for 10 to 15 year olds
Wednesday 28 September or Wednesday 5 Ocober 2016:
Building a fish for 6 to 9 year olds
Behind the scenes for 10 to 15 year olds
Book at www.facebook.com/GoatIslandMarineDiscoveryCentre or phone 09 923 3261.
Cost: $19 per child; $5 per acoompanying adult (maximum of one adult per child).
5. See a film at the NZ Children's International Film Festival
Screenies Children's International Film Festival
TAPAC, 100 Motions Road, Western Springs, Auckland
Saturday 24 to Sunday 25 September 2016
Screenies offers a unique cinema experience with a ‘festival’ feel. Children and parents can attend together and enjoy the workshops in between sessions. The films are curated in packages that have a range of filmmaking techniques from animation to live action, come from different parts of the world, and cover many different themes.
Tickets: Kids 5 and under are $8:50; Kids over 5 and adults are $12; Main feature films are $15
6. Create some art
Auckland Art Gallery Family Drop in Sessions
Auckland Art Gallery
Saturday 25 September 2016 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Tuesday: 2:00pm to 4:00pm
Thursday: 2:00pm to 4:00pm
Saturday 2 October 2016 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Saturday 9 October 2016: 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Create art together in sessions inspired by art in the collection. There is no need to book. Suitable for kids aged 4 and up. All kids under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult.
Cost FREE for families
7. SeePort Open Weekend
8. Help to save the animals of the world
Join the team at Tip Top Town these holidays at Auckland Zoo
Auckland Zoo, 99 Motions road, Western Springs, Auckland
Head to Tip Top Town these school holidays at the Zoo and work as a team to help save the animals of the world. See who can solve puzzles the fastest and get the highest score for fame and glory.
Cost: Normal Zoo admission prices apply.
9. Explore the science of Water
Water Holiday Experience at MOTAT
MOTAT, 805 Great North Road & Meola Road, Western Springs, Auckland
Monday 2 to Sunday 29 January 2017: 10:00am to 5:00pm
Learn bout the wonders of colour and explore how it enhances our daily life. Be enthralled by a glowing UV wonderland or discover the sometimes surprising effects colour can have on our minds and moods. Try out the Glow Zone, Mood room and more.
Cost: Kids under 5 are FREE; Children 5 to 16 years $8; Student $8; Adults $16; Family $40
10. Take the kids for a swim
Auckland's Outdoor Swimming Pools.
Find your local outdoor pool here
Aucklanders aged 16 years and under have FREE access to all council-operated pools across the region during standard operating hours too.
11. Experience life in a Victorian house.
Upstairs Downstairs at Highwic House
Highwic House, 40 Gillies Avenue, Epsom
Wednesday 28 September and Wednesday 5 October 2016:
Sessions at 10:30am, 11:30am and 2:00pm.
Children experience working life in a Victorian house. Using authentic laundry equipment they do the washing for the family and then it is time to fetch fuel for the coal range. There is butter to be made and scones to be baked in the Victorian Coal range. Visit ‘upstairs’, then its time to eat the scones and butter you made.
Limited places so booking is essential. Pay when you arrive.Suitable for kids aged 7+
Cost: Kids $8; Adults $10
12. See the Green Fairy at Westfield
Westfield WestCity AND Manukau
Monday 27 to to Friday 30 September 2016: 10.30am - 2.30pm
Westfield St Lukes AND Westfield Albany
Monday 4 to Friday 7 October 2016: 10.30am - 2.30pm
Experience New Zealand's first virtual reality film The Green Fairy. You and the kids can fully immerse in the 3 minute movie then decorate their own interactive traffic light.Plus, take a photo of your kids at the Green Fairy photo wall.
13. Go on an Auckland park crawl
14. Take a family train ride
Catch the train into town
To see you local timetable into town go to: Train services - Auckland Transport
Take the family on a minature steam train in Panmure or Mangere
Peterson Road, Panmure
Sunday 26 September, Sunday 3 September and Sunday 10 October 2016: 1:00pm to 4:00pm (weather permitting).
Cost: $2 per ride or a concession ticket giving 6 rides can be purchased for $10.
Mangere Centre Park,Robertson Road, Auckland
Sunday 26 September, Sunday 3 Deptember and Sunday 10 October 2016: 11:00am to 3:30pm (weather permitting)
Cost: Train tickets: $2:00 per person
15. Get into the Halloween spirit at Rainbow's End Night Frights
Rainbow's End, 2 Clist Crescent, Manukau, Auckland
Saturday nights: 24 Sep, 1 Oct, 8 Oct, and 15 Oct
Saturday nights will be frightfully fun at Rainbow's End these school holidays. Rainbow's End Night Frights will have all the rides and entertainment as well as some spooky surprises.
Superpass tickets: Child $37 to $30; Adult $42 to $35
16. Build and fly your own kite
Out and About - Kite Days
Monday 26 September 2016: Massey Park, Waiuku at 10:00am &
Cockle Bay Beach at 2:00pm
Wednesday 28 September 2016: Mountfor Park, Manurewa at 1:00pm
Monday 3 October 2016: Allenby Park, Papatoetoe at 1:00pm
Wednesday 5 October 2016: Keri Downs Park, Papakura at 1:00pm
Build a kit-set kite to take home with you.
17. Be one of the first to see the new ASB Waterfront Theatre
ASB Waterfront Theatre Open Day
ASB Waterfront Theatre, 138 Halsey Street, Wynyard Quart, Auckland
Saturday 24 September 2016: 10:00am to 2:00pm
There will be lots of entertainment and theatrical surprises for the whole family hosted by Te Radar.
• Guided Tours by the White Face Crew
• Performances of The Eel and Sina show
• Maui’s Adventures – storytelling
• Music from The Mavaega Sisters, The Unbreakablez and MDM
• Ask the Architect sessions
• Dress-ups and face-painting
• Kid’s crafts
18. Go on a glow worm walk in Totara Park
Out & About - Glow Worm Walks
Totara Park, 90 Wairere Road, Manurewa, Auckland
Wednesday 28 September and Wednesday 5 October 2016: 9:30pm to 10:30pm
Spot the glow worms, feed the eels and see if you can spy a cheeky rabbit in Totora Park.
Bookings essential at: firstname.lastname@example.org Include your preferred date, number of children and number of adults.
19. See the spring animals at Ambury Farm Day
Ambury Fram, 43 Ambury Road, Mangere, Auckland
Sunday 2 October 2016: 10:00am to 4:00pm
Ambury Farm Day
The Farm Day will have wood chopping, sheep shearing, butter making, farm animal petting and feeding, tractor displays, pony rides, horse rides, sack races and more.
20. Go on a family day out to Devonport
Take the kids on the ferry to spend the day in Devonport.
For ideas of what to do when you are there, have at look at the TOP 12 THINGS TO DO ON A FAMILY DAY OUT IN DEVONPORT
You may want to take the kids scooters too.
21. Steam & Steel holiday activities at Auckland Libraries.
22. Learn about Space Sation life at Stardome
Space Station life Spring school holiday fun
670 Manukau Rd, One Tree Hill Domain, Auckland, New Zealand
StardomeMonday 26 September to Friday 8 October.
Learn why it’s important that astronauts wear space suits, how food was prepared for the trip to Space and how the toilet works on the International Space Station. Launch water-powered rockets (if the weather is fine) and see a planetarium show.
Bookings required: Phone 624 1246 or email email@example.com
Cost: Children $12; Adults $10
23. Ride the giant waterslide at the Kowhai Festival
Kowhai Festival – Huge Day Out
Warkworth Township, Queen Street, Warkworth
Saturday 8 October 2016:
Giant waterslide at Lucy Moore Park, The slide opens at Noon and for $5 kids can have unlimited slides.
Stalls, art & craft exhibition, dog show, canoe showdown, food stalls and more.
Cost: FREE entry to the festival.
24. Go on a family bike or scooter ride on the pink Lightpath
Entry points are on Union Street or Canada Street (off Upper Queen Street) Auckland
The Lightpath is not too long for young kids, and fine for scooters, bikes or to walk. You will find that the fascination for the pink path, makes it all the more fun.
If you have already tried out the pink Lightpath then there are lots of other Kid Friendly Bike Rides in Auckland
25. Try rafting at the Vector Wero Whitewater Park
Vector Wero Whitewater Park, 770 Great South Road, Manukau
Open Wednesday to Fridays: 9:00am to 5:00pm and weekends 10:00am to 4:00pm
For kids aged 8 years plus you can go rafting on the Grade 1-2 Tamariki River white water course. Your rafting guide will help you go through the gentle the dips and eddies of this 200m water course. Its perfect for beginners, kids and families.
Cost: Rafting: $45 per child, $55 per adult; Wetsuit hire $10.
Park entry: FREE so you can walk around and watch with family and friends.