A truly international Lego exhibition has arrived in Mount Maunganui.
Brickman Wonders of the World was yesterday set up at Baypark Stadium Lounge, where it will be on show to the public from today until July 22.
The exhibition features 50 huge Lego models of some of the world's most iconic landmarks and wonders - including the Taj Mahal, Michelangelo's Statue of David, The Great Wall of China, the Empire State Building (complete with King Kong), and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
The models are the result of nearly 5000 hours of work by Ryan "The Brickman" McNaught, one of only 14 Lego-certified professionals in the world, and his expert team.
Matua Primary School student Daniel Parks was among a handful of people invited for a sneak peek at the display.
The Lego-mad 8-year old's attention was immediately caught by a model of Paris' Arc De Triumph - one of eight interactive zones with piles of loose Lego tiles for visitors to attempt their own creations.
"How do they even do that," he said, marvelling at a towering model of the sinking Titanic.
Daniel's mum Mary Parks said both she and husband Jeff Parks grew up loving Lego and she said it had been easy to pass that love on to their son.
"It's really cool that this has come to Tauranga. It's been in Auckland and Wellington, and we just couldn't travel."
She was grateful for the sneak peak as she was not sure whether they would have otherwise been able to afford to visit the exhibition.
Project manager Syd Duflou, of Te Papa, said 103,000 people saw the exhibition during its two-month stay at the museum in Wellington last summer.
Another 55,000 saw it at the Auckland Museum over the Easter holidays. It has also visited Hamilton.
She said 4 million individual pieces of Lego were in the exhibition - 2 million in the models and 2 million in the play stations.
Duflou said the two official Brickman installers were the only people allowed to touch the models, each of which is glued for stability and travels in an individual crate.
A local team were working on the other parts of the exhibition.
The exhibition will be open daily from 10am to 5.30pm.
People with autism have been invited for a sensory-friendly visit during a quiet hour on Tuesday from 3.30pm to 5.30pm.
Contact Ticketek for entry times and to buy tickets. Tickets will also available at the door.
Brickman Wonders of the World
- 50 huge models
- 4944 hours to build
- 2 million Lego pieces in models
- 2 million loose Lego pieces to play with
- 170,000+ people have seen it in New Zealand.
Child (3-15 years): $12.50
Concession (65+ & student with ID): $15.00
Family of 4: $55.00
Family of 3: $39.50.