New Beginnings

Meet New Zealand's early European settlers and find out how they braved the ocean to arrive, survive and thrive.

Children play in the wheelhouse of Takapuna, a former Devonport Steam Ferry.

Ferries were an important part of early travel, connecting New Zealanders with one another in the absence of roads.

Whaling Gallery

As some of the earliest settlers, whalers and sealers survived harsh conditions to work the bountiful hunting grounds around New Zealand’s coasts.

Immigrants Gallery

Re-live the stories of immigrants from the 1850s through to the 1960s, as they leave their homes for a life on the other side of the world.