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Botanic Gardens West Sculpture Path

Walking time 30 mins

Walking steps 1950 steps

Distance 1.5 km

Starts at 102 Hill Road, The Gardens

Get directions on Google Maps

About the path

A free, fun walk through the western section of the Auckland Botanic Gardens.

Explore 13 incredible sculptural artworks, each with its own story and connection to the garden surroundings.

Start at the Huakaiwaka Visitor Centre and pick up a map. Itself a work of art, the visitor centre features tree-like columns to support the 'butterfly' roof floating above a spacious atrium. The nearby playground offers a play boat for children to engage in creative play.

The West Sculpture Path isn't signposted, so use a map to find your way around. You can download the free STQRY app on your smart phone to follow the sculpture trail.

The path is mostly concrete and gravel surfaces, however, occasional sculptures are on lawns which are only accessible in summer when lawns are dry.

This route passes the Edible Garden. If you have always wanted to grow your own food, or are looking for new inspiration, you'll discover tons of great ideas.

Entry to the Auckland Botanic Gardens is free.

Bikes, scooters, skates and skateboards are not permitted within the gardens. Dogs are allowed, providing they are under control and on a leash.

Here are the artworks you'll see on the West Sculpture Path:

Fred Graham, Manu Torina (2005)

This piece makes a welcoming statement and highlights the vital relationship between birds and the gardens. The bird theme also reflects the gardens' location in Auckland – Manurewa is translated literally as 'flying birds'.

James Wright, Nīkau (2005)

Three stylised forms in the shape of our iconic native palm and fitting of the visitor centre entrance – the palms mirror the three nīkau growing on the opposite side.

Jim Wheeler, Object of Devotion (2011)

A mere leaflet of an imaginary branch of the Tanekaha tree, a member of the conifer family. For the artist, this sculpture gives a feeling of humility knowing he is a tiny being, with only a fraction of the tree's age, experience, strength and worth.

James Wright, Friend or Foe (2010)

Located in the bog habitat of the Potter Children's Garden, Friend or Foe is a friendly reminder that you are being watched and that you behave, or else.

John Botica, Frangipani (2010)

The tropical frangipani flower inspired this mosaic. It conveys the multitude of flowers produced by this iconic South Pacific plant, and relates perfectly to the nearby tropical habitat in the Potter's Children's Garden.

James Wright, The Boy, Kauri and Kererū (2016)

This sculpture made of corten steel depicts a boy delicately balancing decisions about the environment and represents the next generation looking after our endangered species.

Marte Szirmay, Seek (2015)

Seek uses three universal ancient symbols and creates an optical convergence. The square is the earth, with its four cardinal points; the circle is the divine, the sun and infinity; and triangles symbolise the past, present and future or spirit, mind and body.

Peter Lange, Curmudgeon Suite (2010)

Nestled in the tranquil New Zealand Rose Garden, Curmudgeon Suite provides a place for grumpy old men ('pshaw tut tut') might take a rest whilst their companions smell the roses.

James Wright, Ratiti Maya (2015)

Millions of years ago in Gondwana, flightless birds roamed. Among them were the ratites to which our moa and kiwi are related. The Gondwana collection at the gardens today inspired James to create a large body of visual work.

Samantha Lissette, Rose Cathedral (2008)

Cathedral was designed to complement the Reflective Rose Garden's existing arches and organic shapes, reflecting but not mimicking them. As with the garden itself, half of cathedral's elements are organic and half formal.

Samantha Lissette, (Big Bird) Egg Chair (2016)

The bird shaped chair invites visitors to take a seat and celebrate the coexistence of birds, blooms and bronze; each important elements of the gardens. The artist was inspired by the ovoid shaped Eames chair.

Peter Lange, Camp site (2007)

Beside the lake, this brick boat is waiting to take to the water, while the small tent beside it provides shelter to the boatie (or visitor) should the weather turn bad.

Jamie Pickernell, Bird Lady (2012)

Instantly accessible to people of all ages, Bird Lady invites visitors to share her park bench, put an arm around her and take a photo. Bird Lady is us – people from the land of the birds.


  • Drinking fountain
  • Playground
  • Public artwork
  • Public toilet

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