Project Description

Thames School of Mines

In the 1880s, 30 Schools of Mines were opened around the country to provide practical instruction to goldminers. The Thames School of Mines was the largest and one of the longest-surviving.


A visit to the School of Mines provides you with the chance to step back in time. The classrooms look – and smell – exactly as they did all those years ago. As you explore the buildings on your guided tour, you will learn about the history and science of gold mining – and a few tricks which might help you to be a gold miner yourself!

You will also see the mineral museum – one of the most significant mineralogical collections in the southern hemisphere – built up to teach the miners about the rocks and minerals they would encounter in their work.

The Thames School of Mines is an excellent venue for your school or group tours, and a great place to start your experience of the historic Hauraki gold fields.


  • $10 adults
  • Accompanied children: free
  • Unaccompanied children: $3.50.
  • Please understand that surcharges may apply at times of special events.


  • Open 11:00am-3:00pm Wednesday-Sunday (March to December).
  • Open daily in January & February.
  • Closed Christmas Day & Good Friday.