Experiences

Meet Mataatua Express

Be enthralled by the story of Mataatua Wharenui: The House That Came Home!

Step inside the world of the Ngāti Awa people as you discover the legend of Mataatua Wharenui: the house that came home.

Your journey begins by being welcomed onto the marae and into the scared house through the ancient ritual of pōwhiri.

Marvel at the intricacy of the carved representations of the great ancestors of Ngāti Awa before two of the most famous traditions of our tribe are brought to life before your eyes in Hiko: Legends Carved in Light – the award-winning Mataatua visitor experience.

Your tour will conclude with an invitation to share some traditional kawakawa tea and famous kumara brownies in the adjoining wharekai (dining hall).

This 1-hour express tour is perfectly suited to those with tight itineraries.

INCLUSIONS:

  • Mataatua History DVD Screening
  • Forest of Knowledge
  • Pōwhiri (traditional ritual of encounter)
  • Hiko: Legends Carved in Light (the award-winning Mataatua digital experience)
  • Light refreshments (Kawakawa tea and kumara brownie)
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Know Mataatua Cultural Immersion

Immerse yourself in the cultural narratives of Ngāti Awa as you get to know Mataatua Wharenui, the house that came home.

In Whakatāne, New Zealand’s longest continually occupied settlement, sits the revered Mataatua Wharenui, a fully carved Māori ancestral house that travelled the world for over a century before returning home to its people, the Ngāti Awa Māori tribe of the Eastern Bay of Plenty.

Considered by many as the beating heart of the Ngāti Awa, it is this sacred setting that you will be introduced to the history, the customs, the culture and the people of Mataatua – the descendants of those who arrived from central Polynesia in the ‘main migration’ of circa-1350, and the people they found here: the original inhabitants of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Designed to provide an authentic look into Māori culture, your ‘Know Mataatua’ journey of discovery begins by being welcomed on to the marae through the ancient ritual of pōwhiri.

Follow by a guided tour and interactive cultural workshops, the experience in Mataatua Wharenui concludes with Hiko: Legends Carved in Light. Marvel at the intricacy of the carved representations of the great ancestors of Ngāti Awa as two of the most famous traditions of our tribe are brought to life before your eyes during this award-winning Mataatua visitor experience.

Arrive a stranger, leave a friend with unforgettable memories of the house, the people and the land of Ngāti Awa and Mataatua.

INCLUSIONS:

  • Mataatua history DVD screening
  • Forest of knowledge
  • Pōwhiri (traditional ritual of encounter)
  • Fully-guided tour of Mataatua Wharenui
  • Interactive cultural workshops. Men will learn the purpose and meaning of the haka (war dance), and women the poi (swinging ball dance).
  • Hiko: Legends Carved in Light (the award-winning Mataatua digital experience)
  • Hākari, ceremonial feast comprising of fresh locally sourced ingredients.
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Please note, for catering purposes, we require a minimum of 24 hours' notice. Therefore, bookings cannot be made within the 24-hour window of the tour date.

Educational Tour Groups

A visit to Mataatua Wharenui is an enriching experience for all ages.

Expand your students understand of Māori culture and Ngāti Awa history with a fully-guided experience that will introduce them to our ancestors, our customs, our culture, the Māori people of Mataatua - the descendants of those who arrived from central Polynesia in the ‘main migration’ of circa-1350, and the people they found here: the original inhabitants of Aotearoa New Zealand - in the sacred setting of the house that came home.

Enquire Today: info@maataatua.com

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