28 epic things to do with kids in Auckland

If you’re looking for the best way to entertain your whānau, you’re in the right place! These are the best things to do with kids in Auckland. Discover familiar favourites and hidden gems whilst keeping your family engaged and excited in the City of Sails.

Every parent knows the struggle of finding new, affordable and interesting kids’ activities in Auckland.

In the school holidays, it practically feels like a full-time job keeping the whānau entertained!

Luckily, we have you covered with all of the best child-friendly Auckland activities – both indoor and outdoor, low-cost and splurges.

Whether you want to get active at adventure parks, chill with craft activities or enjoy a movie, this collection of things to do will see you right!

We suggest you share the following suggestions with your kids and plan your next adventure together.

A family sitting outside at a concern, enjoying a meal at a table with the stand in the background.

Art and Learning Activities for Kids in Auckland

1. Visit the Cornwall Park Huia Lodge

The Huia Lodge Discovery Centre inside Cornwall Park is a place to discover the history of Cornwall Park and the surrounding natural environment. They even have a lava cave which is a hit with the littlies!

Their staffs are very friendly, and that you can ask them anything related to the park. You can also buy gifts and souvenirs, with all the proceeds going to the care of the park.

It’s open daily from 10 am to 4 pm, with admission free of charge.

Cornwall Park Green Lane West, Epsom, Auckland 1051

Check out a Local Museum or Art Exhibition

Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery in Titirangi offers free entry and has a number of interesting exhibitions.

They often showcase beautiful art from local schools and artists, making it well worth the visit.

Head along with the kids to introduce them to a fabulous collection of visual arts!

420 Titirangi Road, Titirangi, Auckland 0604

3. The Wallace Arts Trust

The Wallace Arts Trust at the Pah Homestead in Hillsborough, have a monthly art day for kids. This hands-on session is held on the third Sunday of each month and is a whole heap of fun.

The recommended age for participation is 4 to 10 years of age (though is flexible) and is offered at no charge.

Pah Homestead 72 Hillsborough Road, Hillsborough, Auckland 1042

Pro tip: Keep an eye out for the ‘Art Club’ listings loaded on the Wallace Arts Trust website.

4. MOTAT – Museum of Transport and Technology

A perpetual favourite amongst Auckland families, MOTAT makes for an affordable and engaging day out.

With a focus on transport and technology (both past and present), this museum offers a range of fun hands-on exhibits.

With a number of genuine colonial homes and vehicles along with full-sized aeroplanes and a working tram, this museum isn’t to be missed!

805 Great North Road, Western Springs, Auckland 1022

A kid driving a full-sized toy car in the Museum of Transport and Technology.

5. Auckland War Memorial Museum

Though much of the Auckland War Memorial Museum is targeted at adults, there is plenty for younger family members to enjoy.

The Weird & Wonderful gallery is always a hit with kids, as is the volcanoes exhibit (which comes complete with a shaking, quaking earthquake simulation – don’t worry though, it’s pretty subdued).

History-loving families will also enjoy checking out the incredible Māori artefacts on display along with the ANZAC exhibition.

The Auckland Museum is free for locals to visit, making this another fantastic no-cost activity in the City of Sails.

Parnell, Auckland 1010

6. Enjoy the Potter Children’s Garden

Potter Children’s Garden is a part of the Auckland Botanic Gardens that is designed especially for children. It features a maze and a variety of different environments, all designed to show off the diversity of nature.

You can also pick up educational activity sheets whilst visit to teach your kids about native plants and sustainability.

102 Hill Road, The Gardens, Auckland 2105

7. Make the Most of Your Local Library Activities

Visit your local Auckland library (which are based all across the City of Sails) to make the most of a number of free activities for preschool-aged children. There you’ll find separate events for ages 2 and under, 1-3, and 3-5.

During school holidays they have fun events for older children too (such as jigsaw puzzles and robotics.)

8. Take in a Show at the PumpHouse Theatre

The PumpHouse Theatre in Takapuna plays host to a huge variety of productions for both kids and adults.

Head along with your family and enjoy a fan-favourite play, or perhaps even an original production.

2a Manurere Avenue, Takapuna, Auckland 0622

Active Things to Do with Kids in Auckland

9. Learn to Ride a Bike

Avondale has a Learn-to-Ride bike track which is great for kids who are learning, and not ready to be out on the roads.

The track itself has beautiful and colourful pretend roads for bike riding as well as a playground to entertain the kids when riding is finished.

Occasionally they even run Learn2Ride sessions where instructors are available to teach kids how to ride their bikes (in partnership with parents).

Don’t have your own bikes? They even have a few first-come first-served bikes available if your little ones need to borrow one on the day.

These Learn2Ride ride sessions also take place at locations in Manukau, Mount Roskill and Northcote.

We love that there’s free support out there to get kids confidently riding bikes!

10 Racecourse Parade, Avondale, Auckland 1026

A bike track from Learn2Ride where kids can practice riding a bike.

10. Challenge Your Whānau at a High Ropes Course

Auckland is home to a number of high ropes courses – the following two being our favourite options for families.

Rocket Ropes pride itself on having over 60 activities available on its course – with some activities suitable for children as young as two years old!

It is currently undergoing renovations so isn’t open, but keep your eyes peeled for its reopening date.

Alternatively, Tree Adventures is located in Woodhill Forest in West Auckland. They have levels suitable for beginners (ages 5+) and those less courageous, right through to dare devils (aged 14+). Activities include zip lines, platform leaps, balance beams and Tarzan swings – too much fun!

They are open during weekends, school holidays and public holidays, and available for group bookings on weekdays. Please note, you must book before showing up for guaranteed entry to the park.

Rocket Ropes – 12 Tom Pearce Drive, Auckland Airport, Auckland 2022

11. Compete in a Game of Mini Golf

A real family-favourite, there are so many places to play mini golf in Auckland!

Which are our favourite courses?

Lilliput has a number of locations around Auckland – including Safari and T-Rex Alley on Tamaki Drive, Around the World at Sylvia Park and Dragon Quest at Lynnmall.

You’ll also find Enchanted Forest Mini Golf in Onehunga, Adventure Golf near the Auckland Airport, and Gloputt which is in Takapuna (and it’s also a little different because it glows in the dark and is entirely indoors!).

Skyworld in the CBD is another good indoor option with lots of entertainment with more games coming soon like Skyworld Rock Climbing and Skyworld Horror Maze.

And for something fun that’ll tick the boxes for kids and adults, head to Holey Moley.

Whichever course you choose, enjoy your game of mini golf.

Keen to make mini golf educational? Had the scorecard to the kids and ask them to add up the scores. To make it even more of a challenge, have older learners calculate the average score for each player.

12. Raft Up a Storm at Vector Wero Whitewater park

An artificial river in Auckland?

That’s right!

A whole white water park was created to give people in Auckland access to white water activities such as kayaking and rafting, (and been paddle boarding and flatwater kayaking on their lake)

When booking for your visit to Vector Wero Whitewater Park, it’s important to note that any children under 13 must be accompanied by an adult, and there are age restrictions on some of the watercourse grades – for example, children must be at least 5 years old to ride on the grade 1-2 rides.

It’s serious family fun!

770 Great South Road, Wiri, Auckland 2104

13. Go Skiing at Snow Planet

Snowplanet in Silverdale allows active families the opportunity to ski and snowboard all year round – a first in New Zealand.

They cater to a variety of ability levels (offering different slopes, jumps and boxes) and offer lessons if you’re keen on some instruction.

If skiing isn’t your thing, they also have tubes and toboggans – both of which are perfect for the kids!

When you’re done with the slopes, there’s even a fabulous restaurant with a roaring fireplace and delicious hot food on offer. We suggest you pull up a comfy seat and refuel before heading home.

91 Small Road, Silverdale 0932

Pro tip: You can hire all the gear you need at Snowplanet but we suggest heading along in comfortable, warm clothes. If you do have your own snow equipment you’ll want to take it along to save money.

Food Experiences for Your Whānau

14. Grab Some Kai at a Food Market

A fun way to ensure everyone eats what they want, we highly recommend taking your family along to a Food Truck Collective event.

Food truck Wednesday are a super exciting lunch option for a day out with kids. These are held between 11.30 am and 2.30 pm every Friday afternoon in Takutai Square, Britomart.

In addition, they hold monthly night markets in Te Atatu along with scheduled events right across Auckland.

14. Tour an Ice Cream Factory

Looking for the most delicious school holiday activity out?

For only $8 per person, Tip Top offers factory tours showcase how they make their ice cream. And yes, they also include samples!

This tour lasts one hour and is available in a number of time slots between Tuesday and Thursday (along with Fridays in summer months).

As an added bonus, there is also an outdoor playground on site for children to play on afterwards.

What a sweet time!

113 Carbine Road, Mount Wellington, Auckland 1060

15. Visit a Restaurant Offering Great Deals for Kids

If you fancy a meal out with the family that actually fits within your budget, check out the restaurants in Auckland doing Kids Eat Free Sundays when adults order mains. Mexico, one of our favourites is in the mix!

If Sunday doesn’t work for you, you can get free meals for kids from Monday to Wednesday at Dennys (Auckland-wide), and Monday and Tuesday at The Landing at The Riverhead (between 5 and 6 pm).

16. Join a Kids Cooking Class

Kids’ cooking classes are a great way to teach children new skills after school and during the school holidays.

LittleCooks provide workshops and classes in a variety of locations around Auckland. In addition, they also offer cooking parties where they can come to you!

If you’re looking for kids activities in Auckland that can be gifted, they also sell gift vouchers for classes.

Kids Entertainment Activities in Auckland

17. Have Fun at Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq

Cirque Electriq is the ultimate arcade in central Auckland!

Fun for all ages, the kids will be begging you to return.

We recommend ordering treats from the bar (including freakshakes and, for the adults, cocktails) and getting into the action! Attractions include a bowling alley, bumper cars, and virtual reality games.

This arcade is conveniently located in Newmarket (in the Westfield Mall) where you’ll be eligible for free parking.

Be sure to visit before 8 pm as after that the venue becomes adults-only.

309 Broadway, Newmarket, Auckland 1023

Adults riding on bumper cars in Cirque Electriq.
Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq, a kids activity in Auckland that’s just as fun for adults!

18. Pay a Visit to Woah! Studios

Woah! Studios in Henderson provide an exciting range of experiences for families.

They have live performances and an amazing playground for kids. You’ll also find a film studio, park and restaurant called The Grounds on site.

The studio does live shows, and performing art workshops – all of which are family-friendly.

Woah! Studios’ outdoor playground will inspire imaginations with their rocket ship, mission control, pirate cove and dragon castle. There is also a handmade crochet play net designed for kids to navigate through and find their way to the top.

If all of that wasn’t enough to convince you, there is also a 60m long obstacle course!

8/14 Henderson Valley Road, Henderson, Auckland 0612

19. Visit Silo Park

What was once a site for cement storage is now a park with a playground and art and exhibition space (which is found inside the silos).

We also suggest your whānau keeps an eye out for outdoor movie nights, where movies are projected onto the sides of the silos.

Corner Beaumont Street and Jellicoe, Jellicoe Street, Auckland CBD, Auckland 1010

People watching a movie projected on the silo in Silo Park.
Silo Cinema, a popular summer kids activity in Auckland.

20. Race Around Rainbows End

Perhaps the most epic of all of the kid-approved activities on our list, Rainbows End is the ultimate in family fun.

Choose from a visit to Kidz Kingdom (which is ideal for children under 8 years of age) or the main park (where you’ll find a roller coaster, log flume, bumper boats and much more).

By purchasing a pass to either of these parks, you’ll have the ability to ride on an unlimited-basis. Or, if you’d rather watch the kids enjoy themselves without riding personally, you can purchase a heavily-discounted spectator pass too.

2 Clist Crescent, Manukau City Centre, Auckland 2104

21. Have Fun at the Auckland Adventure Park

Auckland Adventure Park in Silverdale is the perfect excuse for a day of fun with the family!

The park includes a vertical bungee, zipline, luge track (just like you’ll find in Rotorua and Queenstown), 4D cinema, kids playground and a cafe too.

Depending on your budget, rides can be paid for individually, in combo deals or as part of an unlimited ride pass.

Everything is open on both Saturday and Sunday, and the playground also opens on Wednesday.

2104 East Coast Road, Stillwater 0993

A self-controlled rockets and a horse carousel inside Auckland Adventure Park.
Auckland Adventure Park.

22. Let Off Steam at an Amazing Playground

Auckland has a bunch of fantastic playgrounds.

One of our favourites is the Snakes and Ladders Park in Farm Cove, where the famous board game comes to life!

Located at Bramley Reserve, this giant snakes and ladders game board is set up on a hill beside the ocean.

We suggest you take a picnic, go for a walk and challenge your family to a game or two!

Bramley Drive, Farm Cove, Auckland 2012

23. Head Into an Indoor Playground

Whatever the weather an indoor playground is bound to be a hit with the littlest members of the family!

With tubes, tunnels, ball pits and all manner of fun playground equipment, these are also the perfect solution for rainy days.

Many of our favourite soft play locations come complete with cafes so Mum and Dad can sit back and relax whilst the kids race around.

Things to Do with Kids in Auckland – For Little Animal Lovers

24. Hang out with Farm Animals at Kiwi Valley

Kiwi Valley Farm Park in Henderson is a fantastic outdoor option for a day of fun!

Their attractions include horse and pony rides, hidden caves to explore and tractor rides. Or visit their nursery animals and feed the animals on the farm.

If you want to extend your time there, there is also a sandpit and playground for the kids to play on while you snack on some food at the cafe.

It’s a great option, particularly for younger families.

308 Henderson Valley Road, Henderson Valley, Auckland 0612

25. Check Out the Auckland Zoo

Auckland Zoo is one of best-known things to do with kids in Auckland – it has endless things to see!

With both native and exotic animals, birds, and reptiles, we suggest you keep an eye out to see the latest news and new exhibits.

Push chairs, umbrellas, and mobility scooters are available for hire while wheelchairs with small and medium sizes are available for free, to make it easier for all ages to explore the zoo.

Lunch is easy too, with several cafe options, as well as a restaurant in the Old Elephant House.

Wednesday and Thursday mornings during term time are tamariki time for toddlers. This allows them to sing, dance and play, with an optional $2 koha entry! Even on a normal day though, the Auckland Zoo offers good value to families.

Opening hours are between 9.30am and 5.30pm with the last entry at 4.30pm. You’ll find the zoo right beside Western Springs park (which happens to be a great place for a stoll after your visit too).

Motions Rd, Auckland 1022

26. Visit the Clevedon Animal Farm

Approximately an hour’s drive out of central Auckland lies Clevedon Animal Farm.

There your family can join an hour-long tour. During which time you’ll meet the animals on the farm, feed and groom them and have the opportunity for a pony or donkey ride.

Aside from the farm tour, they also offer morning teas, music and pony shows for seniors, pony parties and photography sessions.

Keep your eyes peeled at the Clevedon Farmers’ Market too as they’re generally in attendance offering pony rides.

271 Clevedon-Kawakawa Road, Papakura, Auckland 2585

27. Marvel at SEALIFE Kelly Tarlton’s Aquarium

With prime position on the waterfront, SEALIFE Kelly Tarlton’s is one of the most popular things to do with kids in Tāmaki Makaurau.

This amazing aquarium is home to plenty of local sealife (many of which are rescued from the harbour when encountering an issue in the wild) and more exotic creatures too. See these amazing animals and fish in a range of habitats – including their iconic aquarium (complete with a ride-through tunnel) and an Antarctic centre (with the most gorgeous penguins).

Regardless of the age of your child, Kelly Tarlon’s is always a hit.

23 Tamaki Drive, Orakei, Auckland 1071

28. Enjoy Butterfly Creek

Located conveniently close to the airport, Butterfly Creek is a hit with preschoolers and younger children.

It is home to a beautiful walk-through butterfly house, tropical birds, NZ’s only saltwater crocodiles, alligators and a range of farm animals too.

You’ll also find an intriguing exhibition called Dinosaur Kingdom.

With over 50 dinosaurs, including life-sized animatronics and a massive 24m diplodocus, this is a must for dinosaur lovers!

10 Tom Pearce Drive, Auckland Airport, Auckland 2022

With so many amazing family-friendly activities in Auckland, we bet you’ll have a hard time narrowing your choice down to just one!

We hope this list helps you fill your weekends with fun kids’ activities in the City of Sails, no matter the weather or your budget.

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