Arrowtown is a historic little town in its own right, so it's only fitting that its key attraction reflects the mixture of gold mining, Maori and pioneering history that helped shape the region in past centuries. The Lakes District Museum & Art Gallery is quite a small museum from the outside, however its size is deceptive; it's split out into two floors - one of which is below street level - and contains a surprising amount of curated material within. What it does it does very well; unlike most other static exhibits, there's a large emphasis placed on interaction here which helps aid with engagement and learning. Numerous displays from the 19th century help chronicle the history of charming Arrowtown stretching all the way back to the days of Chinese mining, including a recreation of the town during the gold-mining era, and a number of rooms dedicated to specific snapshots of time that are very well done. They're all decked out with numerous tools and artefacts that are true-to life, too, while its adjoining art gallery portrays a number of period pieces from an artistic perspective as well. Kids visiting the museum are kept entertained via a treasure hunt provided - a nice touch for parents wanting to absorb in peace - whether it's perusing the exhibits or browsing the on-site bookstore. A decidedly pleasant surprise that competes with some of NZ's larger and more well-known museums.