Packard Motor Museum



NZ Lifestyle Magazine Group


The Packard Motor Museum is like a Mary Poppins bag. Just when everything has been discovered and enjoyed — but wait, there's more. The collection of 60-plus Packard automobiles, 70-plus motorbikes and many other items is the result of a lifelong passion. Graeme Craw, a farmer and earth-mover, began collecting in the late 1950s. Legend has it he was visiting the Bay of Plenty to purchase stock when he came across a 1923 Packard for sale on the side of the road. He paid £40 and drove it home with his sheep in the back. This museum is not just about cars, bikes and trucks — it's also of stories and memories and a little bit of that Mary Poppins-esque magic. Military vehicles sit near the Land Rover Series 1 in which Queen Elizabeth rode during her 1953 Auckland visit. The ticket price includes a guided tour, which is a necessity in this eye-watering, multibuilding rabbit warren. Otherwise, it would be easy to miss gems like the Ford Opera coupe used by bootlegger William “Bill” McCoy, the butter churner that could be operated by a dog, and an extensive potato-masher collection. SH14, Maungatāpere. (09) 434 8214,