2015 marks 150 years since Wellington was made capital city. Our grand anniversary gift is The Attic, a permanent exhibition on the fourth floor telling more of our stories.


The Attic exhibition reveals some of the fascinating collection items which until now have been hidden away in the Museum’s Collection Store. The opening of The Attic has increased the Museum’s floor space by nearly a third and is the first stage in a major, multi-year development project.

The space is a tribute to Wellington and its region, revealing more of its quirky stories and celebrating the Capital’s past, present and future. It will captivate the imagination, stimulate curiosity and capture who we are as a region and a city.

The Attic is the first phase of the Museum’s development following a ‘dispersed’ model where each display tells a different story, allowing visitors to discover a contemporary story next to an historic story. The theme of the exhibition is designed to feel as though you are rummaging through history’s own attic to discover a myriad of stories.

Highlights of The Attic include: Ngā Hau – a combination of installation art and cinema, where filmed vignettes are projected onto the custom-designed structure, taking the form of a freestanding time machine;  The Frederick Jersey de Clere Room – a space dedicated to the architecture of the building; and costumes from the New Zealand film, What We Do in the Shadows.

We continue on the development of the Museum to connect and reflect Wellington.


As our greatest taonga we are committed to the preservation of the heritage Museum building and want it to be enjoyed for many years to come. Formerly the Bond Store and Head Office for the Wellington Harbour Board, the Museum building was opened on the 24 March 1892. As Wellington Museum, it is Wellington’s museum and home to many precious objects that trace this region’s past, present and future. It is the only museum devoted to sharing this region’s stories, from the first adventurers, to the adventurous spirits that still call it home. Now the second oldest building on the Waterfront and a registered Category One Heritage New Zealand building, it is a priceless national treasure and one of the most architecturally significant heritage buildings in the country.



The stories of Wellington belong to the people of Wellington and not in a collection store. We want to share as many as we can with you.  From store house to story house, the Museum holds thousands of objects unique to Wellington that traverse its history and share its many fascinating stories, some of which remain a mystery to many Wellingtonians. The Attic space will allow us to share most of our collection with our visitors. More than 1,000 stories will weave their way through the Museum, creating a more accessible and meaningful experience and an even more valuable resource for our community.




T: +64 4 472 8904  or send us a booking enquiry 

Open: 10.00am to 5.00pm every day

Closed: Christmas Day

General admission is free. 

Bookings are essential for all schools and tour groups. Charges may apply.


The Museum is located at the heart of Wellington’s waterfront, just two minutes from Lambton Quay and the cable car.

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