The misty jungle, Potter Children's Garden

Q. What's free, fun and fabulous?

A: Our fifty free, fun and fabulous things for friends and families to do at the Gardens!

These are just some of our favourite things to do at the Gardens.

What's your favourite thing to do here/ Visit our Facebook page to tell us

  1. Count the lizards on our Bird Lady sculpture
  2. Find your favourite vegetables in the Edible Garden
  3. Find the brick campsite near the lake and climb aboard the row boat
  4. Find the toilets near the Potter Children’s Garden. What can you see growing on the roof?
  5. Check out the weta in the Visitor Centre Huakaiwaka – do you know where their ears are?
  6. Practice doing cartwheels on the main lawn
  7. Have a picnic under your favourite tree
  8. In the Potter Children’s Garden, learn why the puriri tree needs our kereru (native wood pigeon)
  9. Stand in the native forest and close your eyes. What birds can you hear?  Our cheeky piwakawaka (fantail) like to follow visitors through the forest
  10. Find the sun dial in the Potter Children’s Garden to tell the time without your watch
  11. Race your mum or dad across the central lawn
  12. Take some photos and make a collage when you get home
  13. Explore the Threatened Native Plants Garden – find out how we’re protecting these precious endangered plants
  14. Find and follow an ant trail. Where are they going and what are they doing?
  15. Visit our resident worms in the Edible Garden
  16. Walk around the Herb Garden and find a plant used to make perfume
  17. Head to the Gondwana Arboretum – imagine huge dinosaurs roaming around and munching on these ancient trees!
  18. Play a game of eye-spy in the African Garden
  19. Head to the Potter Children’s Garden and go grub hunting in the grub pit
  20. Take a bush walk through the native forest to the Totara Park playground and swimming pool
  21. Count the geckos in the kids area at the Huakaiwaka visitor centre 
  22. Take your dog for a walk – there’s even an off-leash area at the northern end of the gardens
  23. Head to the Potter Children’s Garden and go grub hunting in the grub pit
  24. Find the brick seat for old men in the Rose Garden
  25. Use a magnifying grass to look at the plants with tiny leaves
  26. Stop on the bridge over the Puhinui Stream at the bottom of the forest, can you spot any eels in the stream?
  27. Feed the Ducks – get a bag of special duck food from the Huakaiwaka visitor centre for 20c
  28. Run through the refreshing jungle mist in the Potter Children’s Garden
  29. Discover a sculpture made of shovels in the Native Ideas Garden – how many shovels can you count?
  30. Find a tree with nice smooth bark and give it a hug
  31. For rainy days, there are some great books and puzzles in the children’s area of Huakaiwaka visitor centre
  32. See if you can find a blue flower in the Perennial Garden
  33. Count the frogs in the stinky bog (Potter Children’s Garden)
  34. Lie on the grass and look at the clouds – what shapes can you see?
  35. Take your shoes off and walk around, what feels nicer – grass or concrete?
  36. Learn how to identify native trees and shrubs on the Native Plant ID Trail
  37. Check out the cheeky jungle monkeys in the Potter Children’s Garden
  38. Fly a kite or throw a Frisbee on the central lawn
  39. Stand in one spot and count how many different shades of green you can see
  40. Find out how to tell the difference between kanuka and manuka plants on the Native Plant ID Trail
  41. Create an art trail by arranging fallen leaves into shapes on the ground, leave them for other visitors to discover
  42. See how many different leaf shapes you can find in the garden
  43. Find out when the Huakaiwaka visitor centre first opened
  44. Read the latest garden and lifestyle magazines in the library
  45. Use the microscope in the Huakiawaka visitor centre to magnify and explore leaves and creatures up close
  46. Bring a notebook and pencil and sketch your favourite plant
  47. Bird watching – how many different birds can you see, do you know what they are?
  48. Find all the colours of the rainbow in the Herb Garden
  49. Have a hot chocolate with marshmallows at Café Miko
  50. There are loads of strange plants in the Rock Garden – dream up a weird new name for the wackiest plant you can find!

Download a printable list of our 50 free, fun and fabulous things do do!