"Taking the waters" at Te Aroha - a must see DVD by Kevin Wells

A fascinating history of the Spa and the Domain, narration by Ian Harrap.  This DVD will take you on a journey of discovery and is available for viewing at any time.

The Souvenir China Collection

Our Museum has a collection of over 300 pieces of souvenir china on display.  By 1900 tourists were flocking to Te Aroha to take the waters, coming by train and staying at one of the three large hotels or boarding houses which were numerouse during that time. 

Souvenirs were important; the china was produced overseas and imported to be sold in shops at Te Aroha. Transparencies (photographs) were sent to the factories commissioned to produce the china, as they were a popular item to take home.  Commemorative pieces were made in Austria, Stoke on Trent in the UK, Crown Lynn, our New Zealand owned pottery company, produced the china featuring the Domain gates when they were opened in 1938.

In 2000, The Society purchased two private collections; these items were collected from all over the world. The earliest pieces we have are dated 1900, they have white raised daisies on them. We also have pieces celebrating the opening of the bowling green in the Domain in 1913. 

It is a fine collection and well worth seeing.

Paul Coney work of art joins local artists on display

Over the years many pieces of art have been donated to the Te Aroha & District Museum and in recognition of the talent of our local artists the Museum has a special exhibition featuring some of these pieces including a watercolour of The Domain, painted in 1890 by James C Richmond and donated by his great nephew Sir Maxwell Richmond.

The Museum has recently been fortunate enough to have a large original water colour painting of the Te Aroha railway station, painted by Paul Coney and donated by Mrs D Sparkes of Orewa. Paul Coney’s father was the Minister at St Mark's Church in Te Aroha in the 1980s and it was during this time that Paul painted the railway station. Paul still has connections with Te Aroha and in recent times he has taken art classes at the Te Aroha Art Group.

Te Aroha’s Zinc Lady

Mrs Gladys Mary Reid, also known as “The Zinc Lady” was the right person at the right place at the right time. 

Gladys was a dental nurse who knew about the properties of zinc as an anti-inflammatory and when she married a farmer in Te Aroha and gave up dental work to join her husband, she became very concerned about the suffering of their herd from facial eczema. Using her experience as a dental nurse and her knowledge of zinc she conducted testing on the farm which yielded positive protective results.  She recommended that zinc be added to water troughs for cattle to drink. This was in the 1960s and 1970s. 

Gladys was honoured with an OBE in 1983 for services to animal research. See the full story in our agricultural display section.

Permanent exhibits

Our permanent exhibits also include Maori settlement; the hey days of a spa town; sport; farming; geology; power; business; medicine; domestic life; natural history; past-times; history of Te Aroha and Lemon and we also have an impressive Mergenthaler Linotype machine which served Te Aroha for 50 years, and a fine collection of clocks - and more.

New displays open

Our 'back-room project' is complete and now houses lots of new displays showcasing: bottles from the past; theatres of Te Aroha; Mangaiti village; railway display; popular music bands; and photography. The Communications Room is open and a new Calamity display wall and some of our finest art is on display - come and take a look.


Ph: +64 (0)7 884 4427
Email: tearohamuseum@xtra.co.nz

The Domain
102 Whitaker Street
Te Aroha 3320
New Zealand


ADULTS $5.00
Ages 5-16
FAMILY        $14.00

2 Adults & up to 4 children aged 5-16 (under 5's free)

Sorry we do not have Eftpos


Summer season
11am to 4pm starts Labour weekend

Winter season
12noon to 3pm starts Easter weekend

Open every day except Good Friday and Christmas Day, other times by appointment


The Museum is wheelchair accessible.  Vehicle access to the front door can be made by arrangement.

Unfortunately, we are not accepting group bookings at this time.