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Guided tours


Guided Tours are only available at Alert Level 1

Located on the banks of the mighty Waikato River, in the heart of Hamilton's south-end hospitality precinct, Waikato Museum is the cultural epicentre of our city. Be inspired by the stories of our region, its rich heritage and artistic vibrancy as we welcome you in the spirit of manaakitanga, as we would a guest to our own home. Go beyond what's on our walls with a guided tour and experience even more of what makes the Waikato a special place to visit.


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Hamilton History Tour (an external tour) 

Starting at Waikato Museum, this tour offers an insight into the varied stories of Hamilton's past, from the traditions and legends of Kirikiriroa, through the early days of the settlement by Europeans, to the booming central city of the glory days in the 1950s. Learn about the quirky characters of Hamilton's past, hear stories about the major events that shaped the areas around the Museum and view the stunning public art, original architectural features and mighty river. This is an external guided walking tour that is wheelchair conducive.

  • Cost $20.00 (adult); $10 (child, 3-14 years) - payment on arrival at the Museum
  • Duration 40-60 minutes
  • Times: Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays departing at 10am
  • Booking essential: Subject to availability. Must be booked by noon on the day before the tour date.
  • Minimum of two people required, with a maximum of 12


Collection Secrets Tour  

Waikato Museum is kaitiaki (guardian) of a diverse collection of taonga (treasures) with a focus on the people, history, culture and art of the Waikato. Venture into the usually off-limits areas of the museum collection to view the amazing objects and learn about the techniques and methods of preservation. See nationally significant artworks, priceless objects that demonstrate the skill and knowledge of local Maaori, and social history items that show what everyday life was like in the Waikato.

  • Cost $25.00 per person - payment on arrival at the Museum
  • Duration 45 minutes
  • Time: Last Thursday of every month at 11.30am.  (NB. Not available on school or public holidays.)
  • Booking essential: Must be confirmed at least 48 hours ahead and is subject to availability. Ad hoc dates may be considered with at least two weeks' notice, subject to staff availability. 
  • Minimum of two people required, with a maximum of 12


Cancellation policy:

Customers with pre-paid bookings will be invoiced 100% of the booked tour if a cancellation is received on the day of the tour. All rates are GST inclusive. Rates valid until 30 September 2021.