After soaking up the sun and enjoying the royal treatment, a trip to an historic museum is a welcome addition to your New Zealand luxury vacation. As it just so happens, 2010 is a fantastic year to visit the visually stunning Auckland Museum. The legendary institution plays host to various noteworthy events this year.
The landmark gallery continues to celebrate its octogenarian status in a yearlong series entitled “I Am 80.” Built in 1929 to commemorate the end of the First World War, the now iconic building has endured as one of New Zealand’s cultural epicenters. Its neoclassical columns now are illuminated in stunning new lighting at night. The lighting was installed in October and uses the latest LED technology. Visitors to the museum are invited to enjoy an interactive memory wall in the Welcome Lounge of the building; the wall encourages patrons to share their memories from the past 80 years.
The Auckland Museum truly specializes in the traditions and history of the country. The three permanent galleries entitled People, Land and War take museum buffs on a walk through New Zealand history. The ground floor, People, tells the story of the Pacific Island people and their evolution with exhibits focusing on decorative arts and an interactive kid’s area. The first level, Land, is more like a traditional natural history museum with tons of fossils and archaeological finds from the country’s past. Finally, War, on the upper level, chronicles how war has changed New Zealand over the years with replicas of weapons and armor.
Starting June 12th, Auckland Museum will launch a limited exhibition entitled “Kai to Pie.” This one-of-a-kind exhibit focuses on the food of Auckland. A delightful tasting menu is part of the exhibit and a must for adventurous epicureans. “Kai to Pie” also will shine the spotlight on local chefs and traditional dishes.
Also in 2010, the museum plays host to concert series, special children’s events and film television events that turn the gaze to New Zealand pop culture.
There is so much happening at the Auckland Museum this year, it almost feels like a party. The only thing missing from that party? You, of course!