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Art & Māori culture

Taupō has a vibrant arts culture bred by its relaxed pace of life, which draws many creatives and artisans to the region. From traditional Māori carving and weaving to contemporary painting, sculpture, ceramics, glass-blowing, wood-carving and street art, there’s a wealth of beautiful work to see (and even take home).

Taupo town centre has several art galleries and a small museum that host changing exhibitions. The popular annual Taupō Art Trail on Queen’s Birthday weekend goes inside local artists’ own studios to show their process up close.

In spring, the Graffiato: Taupō Street Art Festival is a high-energy celebration, bringing local and international artists to add to Taupō’s surprising and diverse collection of public murals.

The Lava Glass Sculpture Garden is a must-visit for art fans. Featuring more than 600 handcrafted glass sculptures and is the only garden of this kind in New Zealand.

Like many resort towns, Taupō hosts boutique film festivals, local and travelling theatre shows and outdoor music events, including the annual Taupō Summer Concert, featuring international artists.

Discover the region's Māori cultural heritage at the Taupō Museum, and visit some of New Zealand’s most significant Māori pa sites (fortified villages) where you can learn about the history of the famous Ka Mate Haka at Opotaka Historic Reserve or discover the site where the last major engagement of the New Zealand Wars was fought in 1869 at Te Porere Redoubt.

Art & Māori culture activities and tours in Taupō

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  • Art galleries

    Pihanga Art Gallery

    Showcasing and selling paintings, ceramics, sculpture, fibre art, jewelry, Harakeke flax art and woodturning created by a group of artists living in the Turangi / Tongariro area.

  • Art galleries

    Wildwood Gallery

    Our gallery displays fine art woodturning, sculpture and paintings by husband and wife team, Robbie and Sue Graham, plus quirky pottery and more.

  • Art galleries

    Tukairangi Gallery / Ross Palmer Pottery

    Discover our range of beautiful handmade wheelthrown and dramatic freeform ware, all in signature rich colourful glazes.

  • Art galleries

    Taupo Art Gallery

    ..if a picture paints a thousand words then I hope that my landscapes reflect a little of me and my love of New Zealands wonderful scenery and often, tranquil moods.

  • Cafés

    L’Arté Café & Gallery

    Come and escape the hustle and bustle of pavement dining and soak up our relaxed L’Arté atmosphere. A visual and edible feast. You won't be disappointed.

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Graffiato: Taupō Street Art Festival

New Zealand’s longest running annual street art festival. 

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