Auckland's painted rocks craze

If you haven’t heard of the latest painted rock hide-and-seek craze, it’s definitely time to jump on board. This is the ultimate craft and adventure combo, where parents and kids get super creative with rock painting, then head outdoors and create a rock-spotting treasure hunt for the local kids. There are even clubs! It’s been praised as a cheap and simple way to get kids outdoors, and is a perfect weekend craft idea for all ages. Here’s how to get involved in Auckland’s painted rocks craze.

Firstly, paint your rocks!

You will need:

  • Rocks (as smooth and flat as possible)
  • Paint brushes
  • Acrylic craft paint
  • Sealer (optional, Mod Podge can be used)

Tip: For added fun, you can add googly eyes to your characters.

How to paint the rocks:

  1. Wash and dry your rocks before you begin painting.
  2. Paint your rock with one solid colour, they may need more than one coat to be opaque.
  3. Once the rock is dry, paint your patterns or designs onto them.
  4. Seal with Mod Podge to protect them from the weather (this is completely optional).

If you are looking for some inspiration as to what you could paint on your rocks, check out some of these ideas:


These cute little characters come in all different shapes and sizes, perfect for kids to create their own.

Messages or sayings

Painting a nice message on your rock may just brighten someone’s day. “Be brave”, “believe in magic”, and “stay wild” are some of our favourites.

Superhero rocks

Creating a group of your favourite superheroes is easier than you may think. You can outline the superhero or their logo on the rock with vivid first, making it easier for kids to paint.


Turn your rocks into cars, trains and boats.


These rocks are very simple, all you need to do is paint your rock yellow and add an emoji’s face. These are perfect to hide in gardens and playground areas.

Hiding and finding the rocks

The rocks are generally hidden in parks and posted on social media for other parents and children to find. Throughout New Zealand, there are a number of Facebook groups dedicated to giving clues of where to find the rocks and tips on how you can join the new craze.

If you want to see where you rock ends up, write your details or include a hashtag for your local club (#AucklandRocks). Some rocks will ask treasure hunters to post a pic and then keep or re-hide at other locations.

Here are some of the bigger Facebook pages we have found (that you might like to join):

Auckland Rocks

South Auckland Rocks

East Auckland Rocks

Westie Rocks

(but there are plenty more, if you’re looking for a local club in your suburb)

And if you’re travelling outside of Auckland, there is still plenty of painted-rock fun to be had!

Timaru Rocks

Cavy Rocks (Dunedin NZ)

Palmy Rocks

Hawks Bay Rocks

more craft ideas from tots to teens:

7 Easy Sewing Crafts

5 Super-Fun Rainbow Magic Ideas For Kids

How To Make: Balloon-Powered Car

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