Must Do School Holiday Experiences – Autumn 2024

The April school holidays are all about chilled days filled with fun and memory-making moments. So we’ve tracked down the top holiday experiences for families that will get you out and about and encourage you to spend some quality time together.

Whether you’re outdoorsy or indoorsy (or a bit of a mix), right across the motu there’s an exciting range of adventures waiting for your family.

Please note: Venue information was correct at the time of publication. Please check with individual venues for the latest opening dates, times, prices, etc, before making plans.

Uncover the magic of science at MOTAT

MOTAT April holidays

Grab your lab coat, goggles, and gloves and make your way into MOTAT these school holidays as they uncover the magic of science with “Into the Lab.”

Get hands-on with exhibitions and interactive displays showcasing the body, energy, and scientific discovery. Catch a live show each hour and learn about the power of physical and chemical changes. At the Aviation Hall engage with microscopes, telescopes, and infrared cameras. With two locations joined by free heritage tram rides, daily activities, and live shows – holidays at MOTAT have never been so much fun.

Included in general admission.

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Discover Waitomo

Discover Waitomo

Discover the hidden gems of Waitomo through bushwalks, cycling trails, and scenic drives. Immerse yourself in the region’s natural beauty and create unforgettable memories with your loved ones.

  • Venture into a magical underground world where thousands of glowworms light up the darkness at Waitomo Glowworm Cave
  • Conquer Ruakuri Cave and witness awe-inspiring limestone formations, underground rivers, and breathtaking scenery
  • Get an adrenaline rush blackwater rafting through underground rivers surrounded by glowworms

Just an hour from Hamilton and approximately 2.5 hours from Auckland and Rotorua, you can spend a day or a few days on a Waitomo journey that will ignite your sense of wonder and create lifelong memories. Check the Discover Waitomo website for activities, accommodation, combo deals and much more.

Plan your adventure

Explore NZ’s largest playground – Timaru District


Did you know that New Zealand’s largest playground is located at Caroline Bay in Timaru District? The CPlay playground provides enjoyment and thrills for all ages and abilities.  Discover the lighthouse tower, shipwreck, lava pools, and other attractions, delving into the rich history and narratives of the Timaru District, encompassing local Māori heritage, whaling and shipwreck tales, and geological formations.

Interactive and welcoming to all, CPlay is an essential destination for families this school holiday season.

Top 5 family activities in Timaru District

Whale watching – Kaikōura

 Whale Watch Kaikōura

Take the family for a getaway in Kaikōura and discover nature’s playground! The iconic Whale Watching is a very popular family activity that cannot be missed. Whether it is by boat with Whale Watch Kaikōura or whale watching by air, seeing the magnificent sperm whales in real life is a memorable experience for young and old.

Autumn Weekend Adventures In Kaikōura

Orana Wildlife Park – Christchurch

Orana Wildlife Park

Enjoy scheduled daily animal presentations at Aotearoa’s only open-range zoo. Hand feed majestic giraffes, meet mighty rhinos up close, see NZ’s only gorillas, observe kiwi, encounter mischievous kea and travel through the Lion Reserve (costs/conditions apply). Explore the park independently, join a guided walkabout or hop aboard the Safari Shuttle. Don’t miss the adventure playground including a 50m flying fox. Orana is a registered charity and is involved in key conservation programmes.

Plan your visit

Snow fun at Snowplanet – Auckland


Learn to ski or snowboard these school holidays! Snowplanet’s school holiday programs offer a great experience for kids aged 5-16 to learn to ski or snowboard in a safe, friendly and encouraging environment. Registrations are now open.

Register now

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