Canterbury Museum

Kia Ora, Welcome

See a moa in a minute or spend hours exploring New Zealand’s rich cultural
and natural heritage. Canterbury Museum is in the heart of Christchurch City, within strolling distance of the Botanic Gardens, the Arts Centre,
Christchurch Art Gallery and Cathedral Square.

Museum Experiences

  • Real Stories


    Tales of Canterbury’s heritage

    Wander the streets of early Christchurch, where ladies ordered whale-bone corsets and men puffed on ivory pipes. See how people traversed the country by land and sea and learn about life in the city on the plains. 

  • Real Life


    Learn about our world

    Visit the Bird Hall to see beautiful displays and dioramas of all our native species, including rare and extinct birds. In the Geology gallery discover spectacular fossils and learn about New Zealand’s fascinating marine reptiles. Find out more

  • Real History


    Venture into the past

    The Asian Gallery is home to an intriguing collection of Eastern treasures. Be inspired by the intricate craftsmanship and detail of objects ranging from swords of the Samurai to delicate Chinese snuff bottles. Find out more

  • Real Design


    Celebrate style and creativity

    Immerse yourself in a world of tweed and taffeta, frocks and flying suits with NZ’s premier costume collection. Explore the detail of the stunning decorative arts housed in the magnificent 1870 Mountfort Gallery. Find out more

  • Real Cool


    Antarctic adventures of discovery

    Epic adventures of Antarctic heroes come to life as you learn about the polar environment and marvel at the vehicles that carried the explorers across the ice. Find out more

  • Real People


    Individuals that shaped history

    Step into the realm of pioneering men and women, brave Antarctic explorers, local sporting legends and eccentric collectors. The Museum is home to a wealth of stories about the personalities behind the artefacts. Find out more

  • Real NZ


    Share our unique taonga

    Visit the Iwi Tawhito and Ngā Taonga galleries to share the treasures, or taonga, of the early Māori. See intricate wooden carvings, tools and weapons of bone and greenstone from the time when moa hunters stalked their giant prey. Find out more

  • Real Fun


    Explore the natural world

    Discovery, our natural history centre for children, is bursting with weird and wonderful things to explore. Dig for fossils, say “hi” to the live tarantulas and learn all about our amazing world and the creatures that share it. Find out more

Exhibitions on now (view all exhibitions)

Upcoming events (view all, for kids)