Inside Paua House 1200

Fred and Myrtle's Paua Shell House

Fancy a taste of kiwiana? Pop in to see the fun and quirky Fred and Myrtle’s Paua Shell House at Canterbury Museum.

More than 50 years ago in a small fishing town at the bottom of the South Island, Fred and Myrtle Flutey attached a paua shell to the wall of their living room. Over the years, more than 1,000 other paua shells joined it on the walls and an amazing variety of kiwiana kitsch was added to the room.

The Paua Shell House, as it became known, saw more than 1 million visitors enter through its doors in Bluff. Ever the socialites, Fred and Myrtle greeted their visitors in person, sharing stories about their collection and their passion for paua. National and international visitors alike were intrigued by the collection and by the colourful and bubbly couple who brought so much life to their visit.

In 2008, Fred and Myrtle's Shell House opened at Canterbury Museum. Now visitors can come on in and be astonished by the house and amused by the film. Tune in to some of Fred’s favourite organ music playing in the lounge, see if you can figure out which one is Myrtle’s favourite shell and take a look to see if you can spot the naughty seagull that snuck in to the display.

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