From rediscovering the elusive takahē bird and journeying under the sea with Pania the Starfish, to colourful labyrinths and inflatable action worlds, there are lots of exciting activities for the whole whānau to explore in Tāmaki Makaurau these April school holidays.

Thanks to Auckland Live – a division of Tātaki Auckland Unlimited - in association with Insite Arts, the highly popular ARBORIALIS Luminarium, a colourful inflatable labyrinth created by Alan Parkinson of Architects of Air, will be in Tāmaki Makaurau from 13 - 28 April. The astonishing multisensory experience for all ages will take place at Auckland’s Aotea Square. ARBORIALIS Luminarium echoes aspects of being lost in a forest – with many radiant canopies of leaves that stretch overhead accompanied by an immersive, ambient score by Irish composer Dr Michael Morris.

Over at Auckland Zoo, it’s time to meet one of Aotearoa New Zealand’s most extraordinary birds, the takahē, which was thought to be extinct until it was rediscovered in 1948. These April school holidays, rediscover this precious taonga and many other living treasures of Aotearoa.

On arrival, pick up an activity booklet and learn about what makes takahē unique. From 13-28 April there will be a daily 3.30pm takahē keeper talk at Whenua Waotū, and Tamariki Time (singing, dance and play) on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 10am and 10.30am, as well as other fun interactive activities in the Zoo’s undercover space, ‘The Domes’. Auckland Zoo is open daily from 9.30am to 5.30pm.

Across the city, get ready for a journey under the sea at the New Zealand Maritime Museum Hui Te Ananui a Tangaroa. Meet Pania the Starfish and her underwater friends in an interactive play about the power of friendship. Then, get busy with an activity book which explores their galleries and earn your very own sailor’s patch! These activities are available from 15-26 April and booking is essential.

For those more into adventure, experience New Zealand’s largest inflatable obstacle course, Megaland, at Go Media Stadium Mt Smart from 17- 21 April. Fun for all ages, the whole family can bounce through obstacles, mega-slides, ball pits and more on the epic 300m course, before enjoying a break and refreshments at Lilyworld Cafe.  

Or take the kids to a One NZ Warriors game at Go Media Stadium as they look to continue their NRL title charge on 25 April, with a huge ANZAC Day special against the Gold Coast Titans at their home fortress. After four consecutive sell-outs, the home atmosphere is set to be a cracker.

For the creatives, Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki has plenty on offer this autumn. Whānau drop-ins, held daily during the school holidays, are free, family-focused art-making workshops that encourage families to get creative together. The collective project Rainbow Fish and the Pointillism pop-up are other activities not to be missed. Ngā Pakiaka: Like the Roots of a Tree in Te Aka Matua | The Creative Learning Centre is open for family friendly activities, and there are also reading corners, activity sheets, and kids and whānau guides inspired by the Gallery’s current exhibits available.

MOTAT is another place to be these school holidays, with daily activities and live shows at their two locations, conveniently joined by free heritage tram rides. Thanks to the Science Roadshow, visitors can get hands-on with exhibitions and interactive displays showcasing the body, energy, and scientific discovery. Don’t miss the hourly live show about the power of physical and chemical changes. Over at Aviation Hall, explore the microscopes, telescopes, and infrared cameras with Lab in a Box.

And at Stardome Observatory, all daytime weekday planetarium shows are followed by bottle rocket launching! Friday mornings at 9.30am there's Starry Storytime - special parent and baby sessions, reading Flit the Fantail and the Matariki Map together.