January 24 - April 18, 2022

From 24 January – 18 April 2022, a trail of unique and stunning whale tail sculptures, designed by artists and children, sponsored by businesses and organisations will be on display all over the city centre and wider Auckland as part of the Whale Tales event.

The concept of the whale tails is to bring to life the themes of protecting and restoring the mauri (life force) of our ocean. Inspired by the Bryde’s Whale that can be found in the Hauraki Gulf, there will be 80 sculptures that will dot Auckland’s streets, parks, and open spaces to provide residents and visitors a fresh opportunity to explore the City of Sails.

A Farewell Weekend and auction night will conclude the trail event in April, with more details to come. 

After the trail has ended in April, the sculptures will be auctioned off to raise funds to support the work that WWF New Zealand does to look after our moana and marine life, in particular the Hauraki Gulf.


We want to see your snaps of the Whale Tales in the city centre! Each week until March 18, we'll be giving away a $100 voucher to one lucky Instagram follower who spots, snaps and shares the tails they find in the city centre to their Instagram! To enter, simply share a picture or video (extra points for creativity) of yourself at the whale tail sculpture you find to your story or feed, tag us @heartofaklcity and use #heartofaklcity A winner will be drawn each Friday from February 18 to Friday March 18 inclusive.⁠ All entries will be included in each weekly draw until selected as a winner where it will then be removed. ⁠Check out who has won so far on our Instagram story highlight.

City Centre Trail:

  1. Te Whānau Moana By Ngā Toi Kauaerunga | Ngāti Awa at Victoria Park Sponsored by Fidelity Life
  2. Sea-lebration By Isabelle Russell at Sustainable Coastlines Office Sponsored by Sustainable Coastlines
  3. Solar Remnant By Nix at Silo Park Wharf Sponsored by Coast
  4. Créatures de la mer By Nafie at Jellicoe Plaza Sponsored by Plant & Food Research
  5. Flourish By Bonnie Brown at Karanga Plaza Sponsored by Aleph Beauty
  6. The Ocean is our Treasure By Aphrodite Draws at Auckland Fish Market Sponsored by Sanford
  7. Save the Ocean By Lucie Blaze at Opposite Team New Zealand Base Sponsored by Auckland Whale & Dolphin Safari
  8. Backyard Bliss By Valerie Auersperg at New Zealand Maritime Museum Sponsored by New Zealand Maritime Museum Hui Te Ananui A Tangaroa
  9. Tāiko Take Flight By Alice Ward-Allen at Waitemata Plaza Sponsored by NIWA
  10. Whale Years 2021 By Gregory O’Brien at HSBC Building on Quay Street Sponsored by Buddle Findlay
  11. Waves By Celine Chan and Janet Lu at Downtown Ferry Terminal Sponsored by Fullers360
  12. Whale Spirit By Chelsea Logan-Porter | Ngāti Porou at Queen’s Wharf Sponsored by Princess Cruises
  13. Fade Away By Charlie Baptist at Te Komititanga Square Sponsored by HOME Recruitment 
  14. Whakaora Whale By Greer Clayton at Britomart, Café Hanoi Sponsored by Café Hanoi
  15. 新金山 New Gold Mountain By Talia Pua at Atrium on Takutai Sponsored by Britomart
  16. He Aha Te Hau By Graham Tipene | Ngāti Whātua, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Haua, Ngāti Manu at BNZ, 80 Queen Street Sponsored by BNZ
  17. Heal Huku By James Showler at Vulcan Lane and High Street Sponsored by Antipodes Water
  18. The Guardian By Fa’amele Etuale at Freyberg Square Sponsored by Heart of the City - Read more about The Guardian, here.
  19. Flukes of Steel By Wētā Workshop at Sky Tower Sponsored by Sky City

See the full trail map, here.


Enjoy two hours of free parking or $5 evening and weekend rates. Find out more. Ride on public transport from as little as $2 each way. Find out more.
Last updated: 14 December 2021