Please be advised that the Lyttelton Museum is closed due to damage caused by the Canterbury earthquake. The Akaroa Museum is temporarily closed due to the Canterbury earthquakes, but still contactable by emailing email@example.com or by phone 03-304-1013.
There are four museums in the Banks Peninsula district. These are located at Akaroa, Lyttelton, Magazine Bay and Okains Bay:
- Akaroa Museum
- Lyttelton Museum
- Thornycroft Torpedo Boat Museum - Magazine Bay
- Okains Bay Maori and Colonial Museum.
The Council funds the Akaroa museum and supports the Lyttelton museum by a rates remission, a cash grant as well as building and insurance maintenance. Support is given to the Okains Bay Museum Trust Board by way of a rates remission and cash grant.
This museum reflects the varied and colourful history of Akaroa, Banks Peninsula and New Zealand.
The museum includes three historic buildings, two of which the Langlois-Eteveneaux House and the Court House are incorporated into the museum complex. The third historic building is the Custom House (1852) situated within walking distance of the museum.Location
Corner of Rue Lavaud and Rue Balguerie, Akaroa. Opening hours:
- Summer (From Labour Weekend) 10.30am - 4.30pm
- Winter (From Easter Weekend) 10.30am - 4.30pm.
- Adult $4.00
- child (16 and under) $1.00
- family (max two adults and four children) $8.00
- students (over 16) $3.50
- senior citizens (65 and over) $3.50
- school groups per head $1.00
- family history enquiries $5.00
Phone: (03) 304 1013
Fax: (03) 304 1013
P.O. Box 35
For more information about Akaroa Museum and the services it offers visit the Akaroa Museum website http://www.akaroamuseum.org.nz/
Lyttelton Historical Museum
This museum features the many aspects associated with Lyttelton history. It includes colonial, maritime and Antarctic relics, photos and models.
Gladstone Quay, Lyttelton.
- Summer: Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday 2 - 4pm
- Winter (June-August): Saturday, Sunday 2 - 4pm.
Free, donations appreciated.
Phone: (03) 328 8972
The Thornycroft Torpedo Boat Museum
Housed in the category 1 powder magazine building (1874) at Magazine Bay, Lyttelton, this museum primarily exhibits the remains of Thornycroft torpedo boat number 168.
A 36 minute documentary film is shown on request. The film sets out the political context of the Russian scare as it affected New Zealand and Australia and relates the history of torpedo boats in general with specific regard to number 168. It displays historic photographs of the vessel, her crews, exercises and shows graphics of how the spar operated. The 1999 recovery of the Torpedo boat and its subsequent restoration as well as the general history of Magazine Bay as a military reserve are also covered.
As well as the partly re-constructed bow and stern of the Lyttelton torpedo boat, the museum features a scale model of the vessel and an example of the steam engine that once powered it. This is in pristine working order obtained from one of its long scrapped sister ships.
Thornycroft torpedo boat number 168 - a brief history
One of four torpedo boats purchased by the New Zealand Government in 1883 in response to the possibility of an invasion by Russian forces.
Particulars of number 168 -Thornycroft spar torpedo boat
|1883 ||Built in Chiswick, London by John I Thornycroft and company |
|1884 ||Commissioned at Lyttelton |
|1899 ||Decommissioned and sold |
|1900 ||Towed to Purau |
|1909 ||Pulled into sandhills by Mount Herbert County Council traction engine and broken in two |
|1958 ||Remains buried |
|1999 ||Excavated and remains conserved for display |
|Length ||63' |
|Beam ||7'6" |
|Draught ||3'4" |
|Crew ||5 |
|Armaments ||30' Spar torpedo|
35lbs gun cotton charge
|Hull ||Constructed of 1/16inch galvanised high tensile steel |
|Powered By ||Coal fired steam engine giving a maximum speed of 17.5 knots; 650rpm |
| ||Dimensions are in feet/inches |
Magazine Bay is situated within a former five acre military reserve, which was gazetted in 1885 at the time of Russian expansionist threats in the Pacific. The torpedo boat formed part of the coastal defence system for Lyttelton Harbour which included strategically placed gun batteries.
A gun was established on the headland above the magazine building. A slipway and shed for the torpedo boat was built in the bay and also caretaker's and gunner's cottages. The reserve reverted to local Council control in 1984. Interpretative signs are provided.
The sandy beach and reserve are popular places for swimming and picnics in summer and the area has good all season walking tracks.
Magazine Bay, Lyttelton
- Summer - Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, Sunday 1pm - 3pm
- Winter - Saturday, Sunday 1 - 3pm.
- Adult $2
- Child 50c
- Group tours - by arrangement, refer to the Lyttelton information centre.
Phone: (03) 328 9093
Lyttelton Information Centre
20 Oxford Street
The Okains Bay Maori and Colonial Museum
The Okains Bay Maori and Colonial Museum offers visitors a wonderful look at the life and material culture of the Maori people as well as beautifully preserved examples of early colonial life in New Zealand.
There is a vast collection of Maori and European artifacts. There are also a meeting house, pataka, waka shed, cottages, stables, a print shop, a blacksmith shop, stationary engines and a saddlery. Two Maori Waka are used for Waitangi Day commemorations each year, one of which dates to 1867.
The Museum has restored the Akaroa Grandstand, which includes accommodation for visiting groups and restored the original Bay school. Most of the carvings on the magnificent meeting house were done by John Rua, a well-known New Zealand master carver. All traditions and tapu were observed.
Main Road, Okains Bay, Banks Peninsula
Opening hoursAdmission Facilities include
- wheelchair access
- guided tours
- gift shop
- membership subscriptions
Phone: (03) 304 8611
P.O. Box 51
Okains Bay 7583