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Pakuranga, Auckland – living history heritage village

Auckland, North Island

Howick Historical Village attractions, things to do

Heritage fans are in for a treat. Discover a living village, complete with original dwellings historic buildings recreating the mid-1800s settler village of Howick. Located in the centre of beautiful Lloyd Elsmore Park, Howick Historical Village is in the Auckland suburb of Pakuranga, the next town over from its namesake. Set aside a day with plenty of things to see and do for family, friends and couples looking for a day out and about.

Howick Historical Village highlights

  • Immerse yourself in a 19thc village atmosphere complete with vegetable plots, recreated domestic settings
  • Picnic in the 7 aces among shady trees, pond and extensive heritage gardens
  • Enjoy meeting and greeting costumed volunteers on live days and enjoy interactive attractions and activities
Self-sufficient cottage gardens, Howick Historical Village, Auckland, New Zealand
Self-sufficient cottage gardens, Howick Historical Village

Howick Historical Village

Explore an early settlement as it was in the 1800s. Open the doors of real homes and experience living history for yourself. Find out how the early settlers would have lived as they went about their daily activities.

Visitors will be struck by a life defined by sunrise and sunset where lighting was a weak fluttering raupo rush lamp, and water was carried in buckets from an outdoor well. Sustainability and “waste not, want not” were the guiding principles of daily life.

Between 1847-1854, eleven ships brought Fencibles and their families which nearly doubled the population of Auckland at that time. Other Fencible villages were at Panmure, Otahuhu, and Onehunga.


Wander among Howick Historical Village’s comprehensive collection of art and furniture. The gardens adds to the sense of stepping into the past. Every second Sunday of the month is a live day with costumed staff cooking over a Victorian coal range, craft demonstrations, and Victorian games (subject to change).

Marry in the picturesque Howick Historical Village church, Auckland, New Zealand
Marry in the picturesque Howick Historical Village church
School children playing 19thc games at Howick Historical Village, Auckland, New Zealand
School children playing 19thc games at Howick Historical Village


The dedicated volunteers and Howick Historical Village team offer a wide range of programmes, tours and workshops throughout the year celebrating everything from Easter to Matariki. A time of renewal and celebration that begins with the rising of the Matariki star cluster signalling the start of the Māori new year. Check Howick Historical Village for upcoming events.


In exchange for seven years military service, in the newly established colony of New Zealand, retired Imperial veterans were promised a cottage and an acre of land. The rank and file recruits is an important part of the growth of contemporary Aotearoa New Zealand. Their daily existence of hard work and not many creature comforts are recreated in the Howick Historical Village. It is a story of thrift and a “waste not, want not” mentality.

Spacious leafy grounds of Howick Historical Village, Auckland, New Zealand
Spacious leafy grounds of Howick Historical Village
Howick Historical Village fencible soliders campsite, Auckland, New Zealand
Howick Historical Village fencible soliders campsite


Imperial English military rewards were determined by your birth. Officers were drawn from the aristocracy and landed families while the rank and file from tenant farmers and trades. The opportunity for non-commissioned soldiers to acquire land would have been a powerful incentive to immigrate to the other side of the world to colonial New Zealand. The new immigrants were promised land in return for limited military duties. At some point, the fencibles represented 10% of the new European population of Auckland.


Nearby are Tearooms of the Shamrock Cottage  and Hawthorne Dean Cafe, two delightful cafes with fascinating historic stories. Onsite the Howick Historical Village is the Homestead cafe.

Howick Historical Village 19thc life, Auckland, New Zealand
Howick Historical Village 19thc life
Washing day Howick Historical Village, Auckland, New Zealand
Washing day Howick Historical Village

Services and Facilities of Howick Historic Village

  • Illustrated village guides are available at reception in Chinese, English, French, German, Japanese, and Korean
  • Free parking
  • There is accessible access to village pathways and bathrooms
  • Mobility scooter available
  • Café on site
  • Howick Historical Village is part of the Safe Space Initiative
  • Toilets on site
  • Various picnic areas
  • Except for Guide Dogs, dogs are not permitted in the Village grounds and must remain on a leash in the café premises and main entrance
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