Matariki Holiday Programme

Matariki Holiday Programme 

Weekdays Monday 9 July – Friday 20 July

$5 per child for holiday activities


Week 1, Mon 9 – Sun 15 July

Navigation by the stars with Te Toki Voyaging Trust

Be immersed in a world of stars, sea and waka kaupapa inside a blow up star globe with ocean navigators from Te Toki Voyaging Trust.


Week 2, Mon 16 – Fri 20 July

Waka Warriors screenings

Follow the transformation of three rangatahi in the epic television series, Waka Warriors, as they vie for a place onboard a fleet of voyaging canoe, one of which, Haunui, sits in the herenga waka (marina) of the museum.

Led by waka legend Hoturoa Barclay – Kerr (Tainui) and skipper Frank Kawe (Ngāti Kahungunu) three young Māori will be mentored in the ancients laws of voyaging, disconnecting from every day life to recdonnect with their culture and ancestry onboard waka Haunui.


Mon 9 – Fri 18 July

Daily Matariki themed activities

Make a simple print to take home with our friendly experience hosts.

Share your new year resolutions on a star wall and share messages to loved ones that have come before you.


Sunday 15 July: 12.30-1.30pm

Wai Tai & Kai

A collaboration of musicians who create the wairua-imbued sounds of Māori world music, directed by Robyn Kamira, with delicious, modern Māori kai from the Pūhā & Pākehā food truck.


About Matariki

Matariki is a star cluster which appears in the night sky during mid-winter. According to the Maramataka (the Māori lunar calendar), the reappearance of Matariki, brings the old lunar year to a close and marks the beginning of the new year. Hence, Matariki is associated with the Māori New Year.

Traditionally, festivities were conducted to celebrate Matariki, they followed the harvesting of crops when the pātaka (food) storehouses were full, freeing up time for family and leisure. These festivities included the lighting of ritual fires, the making of offerings, and celebrations of various kinds to farewell the dead, to honour ancestors, and to celebrate life.

Tohunga (spiritual) experts looked to the Matariki star cluster to find out how abundant the upcoming year’s harvest would be. Bright, clear stars promised a warm and successful season. Hazy stars, however, warned of cold weather and poor crops.


  • Residents of the Auckland region can visit the Maritime Museum galleries for free if they provide proof of address on arrival
  • Children: 5-14 years old (4 years and under are free)
  • Family Pass = 2 adults & 2 children or 1 adult & 3 children

Our staff are passionate about making the Museum accessible for all people.
Click here for further information

Bookings essential. Please call (09) 373 0800 or email to reserve your place.