December 3, 2023 Te Papa (Day 67)

What to do on a rainy day? Something indoors! We ventured out just before noon to find a store to buy our bus passes, a 30 minute drive to a suburb on the winding narrow road (just about every road we’ve encountered!). We got our bus cards, topped them up with $, parked the car in the park and ride lot and headed into Wellington city centre, warm and dry on the bus.

Wellington Harbour on a rainy day.

We walked a short distance, purchasing our necessary coffees on the way, to the Te Papa Museum, a free museum on the waterfront. We were delighted to find that the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (NZSO) Brass Section was setting up in the main hall to perform Christmas music, to get everyone warmed up for the holidays! Watch the video on YouTube HERE!

We watched and listened for a little while before wandering through the exhibits.

The Waka exhibit of canoes carved for the 1940 commemoration of the signing of the Waitangi Treaty¬† was interesting. The Mana Whenua (meaning “the indigenous people [Maori] who have historic and territorial rights over the land” per the Auckland Council) exhibit of the sailing catamarans of the Peoples that first arrived in Aotearoa is beautiful!

A scale model of a typical seafaring wooden catamaran with a changing background showing a beautiful day.

The changing background then depicts a stormy day, similar to today!

And a night background suggesting celestial navigation.

This beautifully carved anchor stone is practical as well.

Another exhibit is the Rongomaraeroa Te Marae, a modern Marae accessible to all.

The carvings and color are modern and airy.

Opposite the Marae is this beautiful stained glass window/door.

An explanation panel describes the various parts of the Marae and their functions.

We wandered through many more exhibits; cultural and natural histories, changes wrought by human habitation (and exploitation), and we missed many more art exhibits and temporary exhibits we will have to return to see! We ended up being swept out with other visitors at closing time! A quick walk to a grocery store and to the bus stop and a stress free ride back to the car!

In other words…”You Can’t Beat Wellington…On a Bad Day” either!

One Response to “December 3, 2023 Te Papa (Day 67)”

  1. Linda D Charny Says:

    Can’t get my brain around how they sailed the oceans in those small catamarans! We had 20′ seas in the Atlantic during our cruise, and we were in a much bigger boat – it was still a wee bit scary, but since I had done the traditional view of “Titanic,” the entire ship was safe because I vaccinated it by that sacrifice. Some shipboard friends told me the next morning that the only thing that kept them afraid was because they knew I had watched “Titanic,” and they thanked me for it! Imagine that in the early catamarans! Wow! Beautiful exhibits in the museum. So much history on display. Cheers!

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