A rainy day at the Auckland Art Gallery & New Zealand Maritime Museum

The weather on my second full day in Auckland wasn’t any better than the first. I got a late start, but eventually I forced myself to get out and make the most of the day by seeing a couple more museums, the Auckland Art Gallery and the New Zealand Maritime Museum. Both are great rainy day activities.

After getting lunch, I headed to the Auckland Art Gallery, which is located in Albert Park. While some museums on the edges of parks are grand edifices that beckon your entrance, the Auckland Art Gallery is surrounded by the hills of the park, which reach above it.

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The museum covers modern New Zealand & international art. Entry is free.

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I enjoyed most of the art in the museum. The local influence could easily be seen, such as in this series by Para Matchitt that incorporates Maori designs.

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The galleries of the Auckland Art Gallery are themselves part of the art, with long hallways & unique rooms creating unique views.

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There was an exhibition on called Necessary Distraction: A Painting Show, where paintings & the room itself blended together in varying states of completion.

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After about an hour in the Auckland Art Gallery, I headed back to the harbour, which is home to the New Zealand Maritime Museum.

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If you are at all interested in boats & ships, navigation, history, or the movement of people, or if you have children who are, the New Zealand Maritime Museum is a must-visit in Auckland. The city of Auckland and New Zealand as a whole have close ties with the sea, so there is a lot of history to be found here.

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The museum is comprehensive, featuring everything from small boats in the indoor exhibits to large ships anchored at the docks. The pier is covered, so even if it’s raining, you can at least still see the ships moored outside.

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All of New Zealand’s seafaring history is covered by the museum. There are Maori boats from New Zealand, as well as boats from all over the South Pacific.

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European explorers are also included, and the museum doesn’t just stop with the explorers themselves, but also includes exhibits about how people immigrated to New Zealand by ship.

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At the end of the exhibition, there was a board where you could write your immigration story. I chose to write one from the future that hopefully will not come true, as much as I would love to move to New Zealand.

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Every maritime industry under the sun has at least a small display in the museum, including navigational instruments, ferries, whaling, lighthouses, bout engines, fishing, customs, swimwear, and model building.

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Black Magic, the winner of the 1995 America’s Cup, proudly floats as the centerpiece of a large gallery about modern sailing in New Zealand.

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In some ways, the New Zealand Maritime Museum is similar to other New Zealand historical museums, but the unique nautical focus makes it worth taking an hour or two to visit.

After the two museums, I wandered around the waterfront for a while. I spotted the Auckland Fish Market, which was I was surprised to find open on a Saturday afternoon right after New Year’s. It was quiet inside, and while the fish did look good, I skipped getting anything. I questioned just how fresh any of the seafood for sale would be as it was unlikely that any of the local fishing boats had been out for a week and a half due to the holidays.

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Instead, I went to a nearby restaurant for a nice dinner. Baduzzi is an Italian & seafood restaurant located right near the fish market in an area of trendy bars and restaurants along the waterfront.

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I had crayfish meatballs, ravioli, and a lamb cutlet. For dessert, I had a cannoli with citrus confit & chocolate, which combined two of my favorite sweets: cannolis and chocolate orange jaffa cake flavors.. It was all delicious, and I liked that the tapas-style servings meant that a solo traveler like myself could sample his way through a full meal.

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Dinner complete, it was time to enjoy my final night in New Zealand at a nearby beer bar.

Read below for all of my posts about my trip around the Pacific Rim!

A trip around the Pacific Rim – Introduction
OneWorld Business Lounge Los Angeles LAX review
Cathay Pacific Business Class Boeing 777-300ER Los Angeles LAX to Hong Kong HKG review
Cathay Pacific Business Class Airbus A330 Hong Kong HKG to Kuala Lumpur KUL review
Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral review
A layover in Kuala Lumpur – Street markets & Petronas Towers
Cathay Pacific Lounge Kuala Lumpur KUL satellite review
Plaza Premium Lounge Kuala Lumpur KUL review
Malaysia Airlines Golden Lounge Kuala Lumpur KUL satellite review
Malaysia Airlines Business Class Airbus A330-300 Kuala Lumpur KUL to Auckland AKL review
Air New Zealand Economy Class Airbus A320 Auckland AKL to Queenstown ZQN review
Queenstown Motel Apartments – Queenstown, New Zealand review
Queenstown, New Zealand – A Lord of the Rings tour
Day trip from Queenstown, New Zealand – Milford Sound
Queenstown, New Zealand – Skyline Queenstown
Craft beer in Queenstown, New Zealand
Queenstown to Franz Josef, New Zealand by bus
Hiking to Franz Josef Glacier, New Zealand
Franz Josef to Nelson, New Zealand by bus
Fellworth House – Nelson, New Zealand review
A beer & wine tour through Nelson, New Zealand
The best craft beer in Nelson, New Zealand
Nelson to Wellington, New Zealand by bus and ferry via Picton
A nerdy day at Weta Workshop in Wellington, New Zealand
Exploring the museums & parks of Wellington, New Zealand
The best craft beer in Wellington, New Zealand
Wellington to Auckland, New Zealand by bus
New Year’s Eve in Auckland, New Zealand
A rainy New Year’s Day at the Auckland War Memorial Museum
A rainy day at the Auckland Art Gallery & New Zealand Maritime Museum
The best craft beer in Auckland, New Zealand
Emperor Lounge Auckland AKL review
Malaysia Airlines Business Class Airbus A330-300 Auckland AKL to Kuala Lumpur KUL review
Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur review
A layover in Kuala Lumpur – Islamic Arts Museum Malaysia & Jalan Alor
Malaysia Airlines Golden Regional Lounge Kuala Lumpur KUL review
Malaysia Airlines Business Class Boeing 737-800 Kuala Lumpur KUL to Hong Kong HKG review
A visit to Tim Ho Wan in Hong Kong for dim sum
A rainy day in Hong Kong – Science Museum & Kau Kee noodles
Hong Kong – Victoria Peak & more great food
More dim sum in Hong Kong – Din Tai Fung & Dim Sum Square
A day trip to Macau from Hong Kong
Grand City Hotel Hong Kong review
The best craft beer in Hong Kong
Cathay Pacific The Cabin Business Class Lounge Hong Kong review
Cathay Pacific The Bridge Business Class Lounge Hong Kong review
Cathay Pacific Business Class Airbus A330-300 Hong Kong HKG to Osaka KIX via Taipei review
A layover in Osaka – Ramen, sushi, & exploring the city
JAL Sakura Lounge Osaka KIX review
JAL Business Class Boeing 787 Osaka KIX to Los Angeles LAX review

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