Maori Cultural Experience NZ

Maori Cultural Experience New Zealand

Maori culture is famous for the Haka (a war dance traditionally performed by men and made famous by the All Blacks), the Moko (traditional tattoo), their skilled weaving and carving (esp. jade tiki carvings) and of course their beautiful traditional singing and dancing. They are also famous for embracing thermal healing baths, mud pools and cooking in thermal waters or underground, for feasts known as a “Hangi”. The Maori people also have a long tradition of being tour guides particularly in the now famous tourist areas like Rotorua, where they have been guiding foreign tourists since the late 1800’s.

Recommended Maori Experiences

Recommended Maori Experiences: A visit to a Marae.

The Maori people like so many indigenous tribes were negatively influenced by colonisation. A perfect example of this is the founding document of New Zealand, the Treaty of Waitangi (which controversially occurs in two different versions, one in Maori and one in English). New Zealand despite its history has managed to have one of the most racially progressive, non discriminative societies in the world, although this is a constant work in progress.

It is highly recommended for any visitor touring New Zealand to experience Maori culture first hand. The thermal region of Rotorua and the Taupo Volcanic Valley is a strong hold of the Maori culture, and there are plenty of opportunities to visit working villages. The Auckland War Memorial Museum (Tamaki Paenga Hira) and the Museum of New Zealand (Te Papa Tongarewa) in Wellington have excellent displays of Maori art, examples of ‘Meeting House’ architecture, carvings, weavings, Waka’s, copies of the ‘Treaty of Waitangi’ in both English and Maori, and have both excellent demonstrations of traditional oratory performances, songs and dances.

Recommended Activities

  • Auckland War Memorial Museum

    North Island, Auckland New Zealand
    Welcome to Auckland War Memorial Museum, where exciting stories of the Pacific, New Zealands people, and the flora and fauna and landforms of our unique islands, are told within a memorial dedicated to those who have sacrificed their lives for our country.

    Auckland War Memorial Museum

  • Rotorua Museum

    North Island, Rotorua New Zealand
    Discover Rotorua’s rich culture, volatile landscape and legendary figures in this ‘must see’ museum. Innovative displays, changing art exhibitions, and cinema experiences bring the region’s history to life: learn about the history of the Rotorua Spa and explore the Bath House from basement to rooftop.

Rotorua Museum

  • Te Puia – Pohutu Geyser

    North Island, Rotorua New Zealand
    Te Puia – New Zealand Maori Arts And Crafts Institute New Zealand’s premier Maori Cultural centre and home of the World famous Pohutu Geyser.

    Te Puia – Pohutu Geyser

Some Maori Terminology

Kia Ora = Hello
Kai = Food cooked on hot stones underground
Hangi = A traditional feast
Powhiri = Traditional Maori welcome
Local Marae = Meeting Houses
Kappa Haka = traditional performances of song and dance
Whenua = land
Waka = Traditional canoe

Recommended Maori Experiences:

A visit to a Marae
A Maori concert and Hangi
Guided walks through Maori thermal parks
Waka trips
Buying traditional Maori arts and crafts

Recommended Maori Experiences: A Maori concert and Hangi

Recommended Maori Experiences: A Maori concert and Hangi

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