Stories of Auckland Tāmaki Herenga Waka is open at Auckland Museum

Stories of Auckland Tāmaki Herenga Waka is open at Auckland Museum

Tamaki_Herenga_Waka Auckland Museum

Tāmaki Herenga Waka: Stories of Auckland opened to the public when the second stage of Auckland War Memorial Museums visitor transformation was unveiled on Wednesday 24 March 2021.

Designed to share the diverse stories of the people and place that is Tāmaki Makaurau, this is the first time that Auckland will have a permanent suite of galleries that explores the past, present and future of its people and the cultures that have made the city what it is today.

Tāmaki Herenga Waka means ‘the gathering place of many waka’ and is an exhibition of Auckland places and people staged across four galleries and divided into seven sections. 

Tāmaki Makaurau is not only New Zealand’s largest city, it is our country’s most culturally diverse. People have come to Auckland from everywhere to form communities, and we are home to over 120 different ethnicities,” says Dr David Gaimster, Chief Executive of Auckland War Memorial Museum. “Our research shows that visitors want to see their own lived experience of Auckland and of being Aucklanders. This gallery will be a place for audiences to reflect on the past, present and future of Auckland and their place within this.”

The stories of Auckland are shared though the Museum’s collections, with over 500 objects on display. They are enhanced with rich digital experiences. A key feature of the gallery is Kei konei koe You are Here (pictured above) , an audio-visual experience that offers up an immersive introduction to Tāmaki. Visitors are invited on a journey through time and space, encountering Auckland from different and surprising perspectives.

Eyes on Tamaki
Tamaki Stories new galleries Auckland Museum 2021


The launch of the Tāmaki Herenga Waka gallery is a landmark achievement for our city” says Dr Gaimster. “It provides an anchor, a place of cultural orientation to explore what makes this city what it is.

The exhibition has involved collaboration with many of the city’s communities, with over 60 objects generously loaned to the exhibition to enable the sharing of Auckland’s stories.

More importantly, this gallery reflects the heart of our city and its dynamic culture through the unique communities that have grown up within it” Gaimster concludes.

Auckland Museum Tamaki herenga

Tāmaki Herenga Waka seven section of the exhibition:
Tāmaki Herenga Waka showcases selected taonga from the three iwi who hold mana whenua status for the Museum’s site at Pukekawa: Ngāti Whātua, Ngāti Paoa and Waikato-Tainui. 
Tāmaki | Auckland looks at what makes Auckland a desirable place to live; exploring the development of Auckland through the stories of Māori, European, and Pasifika families who settled here.
Land | Whenua explores our relationship to land and landmarks. 
Water | Wai explores how the geography of the Auckland region and our proximity to water has shaped the way we live. 
Our City | Taku tāone invites visitors to ‘step outside’ the walls of the gallery and into the wider Auckland region. 
Activate! | Maranga! showcases Auckland in action, exploring the opportunities and pressures that come with being the most urbanised centre in Aotearoa. 
Living City | Rarau mai uses 21st century technology to tell the story of Auckland through data, not objects. 

Tamaki Stories - Can you haul the waka | Auckland Museum
Tamaki Herenga Waka
Exploring data in Tamaki's Living City Auckand Museum
Tamaki Stories sounds of Tiritiri Matangi birds at Auckland Museum


Admission to the Tāmaki Herenga Waka: Stories of Auckland at Auckland Museum is FREE for Aucklanders. The primary entrance to Tāmaki Herenga Waka is through the new South Atrium, Te Ao Mārama at Auckland Museum but your family can choose how they experience the galleries as there are multiple entries to it within the museum. Find our more here:

Images in this story were provided by Auckland Museum.