Tawhiti Museum

Tawhiti Museum, Hawera: Hours, Address, Tawhiti Museum Reviews: 5/5

Tawhiti Museum
5
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Monday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
Tawhiti MuseumWidely acclaimed as one of the most innovative museums in New Zealand, Tawhiti uses life size exhibits and scale models to capture the past in a series of super-realistic displays. All the displays – including the life size figures created from moulds cast from real people – are designed and built on the premises. Whether the subject is shipping, farming, railways, or just a small corner of a colonial kitchen, the attention given to research and detail is the same. “I hope my enthusiasm for local history comes through the displays. I’m particularly aware of drawing children into our exhibits – they mustn’t feel museums are old buildings, full of old dusty junk. Historical display should be exciting and relevant – I’m always looking for more creative ways of making it just that” Nigel Ogle.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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Popular mentions

5.0
399 reviews
Excellent
340
Very good
54
Average
3
Poor
2
Terrible
0

Alfanut
Auckland Central, New Zealand17 contributions
Jan. 2022 • Couples
My wife and I were visiting Hawera for the first time in a long while. The museum was a fascinating collection of snippets Taranaki’s past, based in a former dairy factory that was a piece of that past. The dioramas and figures depicting activities of the time were well done, and the Traders and whalers” attraction was a real surprise. The delightfully themed, “Mr Badger’s Cafe” did a great afternoon tea. The gift shop had some interesting and unusual items - well worth a look! An excellent afternoon, thanks to the very friendly staff there. (Just a shame we weren’t there on Sunday, when their bush railway runs…)
Written 14 January 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Ani G
3 contributions
Dec. 2021
What a brilliant day we had here. World class. Well priced and so much to see. A great family friendly space
Written 1 December 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Paul M
Auckland Central, New Zealand232 contributions
Jul. 2021
We needed to fill in a couple of hours before attending our intended function. We chose to come here. It was a great choice with plenty to see. We could have spent even longer than we did viewing the wide range of exhibits.
Written 24 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Peter B
Auckland, New Zealand45 contributions
May 2021
This museum is exceptional and like no other, even appealing to someone I know well who doesn't like museums!

It's located in the Taranaki countryside, and is largely the inspiration and work of the incredibly talented artist Nigel Ogle. From thousands of intricately sculpted figures 50 cm high, up to many that are life-sized, Nigel depicts Māori culture, Aotearoa history, farming practices, traditional industries, and crafts in a kaleidoscope of displays from dioramas to full-size,

As extensive as these exhibits are, they occupy only a portion of the site. We had just a short time to glimpse the separate vast display of vintage farm vehicles and equipment in Farmpower Hall, as collected by the late Bruce Alexander. We grabbed a welcome coffee and snack at the memorable Mr Badger's Cafe (there's a special guest!), but had no time for the major separate "Traders and Whalers" exhibition.

This complex of 3 museums is an unforgettable experience that we will certainly be returning to.
Written 7 June 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

SLRobinsonNZ
Whanganui, New Zealand627 contributions
May 2021
This is definitely a place worth visiting. At costs $15 to visit the museum and $15 to visit the Whalers & Traders exhibit. I wish there had been a discount for visiting both. I also wish there had been parking for the disabled right outside the museum. The Whalers & Traders exhibit was very well done. The figures were incredibly life-like - a couple looked so fierce that I was glad I didn't have my young grandchildren with me.
Written 30 May 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Latimers
Auckland, New Zealand68 contributions
May 2021
Amazing collection illustrating the history of the area. We especially liked the very detailed models of the Maori pa and other dioramas.
Written 25 May 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Paul K & Tina J
Wellington, New Zealand4 contributions
Apr. 2021
Wow - what an amazing museum. We need 2 days for this one! It has a bit for everyone including NZ Wars, farm equipment, dairy,
Written 24 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Kiwi_debs
Levin, New Zealand22 contributions
Apr. 2021 • Family
What a gem, really impressed with this museum. We enjoyed the boat ride and our tour guides. Topped off with a good flat white, a great morning.
Written 22 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

coolcatstravel
Auckland, New Zealand31 contributions
Apr. 2021
Huge museum with lots to see, and the dioramas really draw you into learning about the history of the area. The life-size models are cool to see too. Definitely recommend taking the train ride for some carefree fun and seeing the dioramas and photos about logging at the other end of the track. We spent about four hours here and unfortunately didn’t have time for the Traders and Whalers but look forward to checking that out next time.
Written 5 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Robyn G
Paraparaumu Beach33 contributions
Mar. 2021
What an amazing place. I thought ho hum,,, just another museum. How wrong I was. The owner has done an amazing job, creating the history of taranaki in such a way that it leaves you wanting to see more. The dioramas were exquisitely done, and anything life sized was so real. Almost wanted to wipe the sweat of their faces. I took a group of our Stag Car Club owners, and they were all fascinated. I highly recommend this museum, but warning. allow yourself a couple of hours , and take the new Whalers and miners exhibit,,, underground on a rowboat, it sort of puts you in the time and place. Incredible!!!
Written 11 March 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Tawhiti Museum

Tawhiti Museum is open:
  • Sun - Sat 10:00 am - 4:00 pm


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