Traditional greetings of “Tena koutou” welcome you as you enter the Tamaki Maori Village in Rotorua. Being the indigenous people of New Zealand, the Maori first arrived in New Zealand over 1000 years ago and now make up almost 14% of the total population. Today, many are involved in preserving their cultural heritage and language alive.
One of the important aspects of Maori culture is the connections between people, and these relationships are preserved and respected throughout the generations. At the Tamaki Maori Village, guides recite stories from their ancestors with pride and share their culture. You will also discover traditional art and carving, witness time-honoured rituals and traditions, listen and watch exhilarating songs and dance and enjoy a Maori feast with your hosts.
But before one can enter the marae (meeting place), the Maori have a very unique etiquette that must be followed. There is a challenge that is offered between the hosts and the guests, and a peace offering must be offered to the guests. If it is accepted by the visitors, then the outsiders are allowed to enter. This protocol is also followed in the Tamaki Maori village, giving you an authentic view into Maori life and culture.
Your arrival will be announced across the forest, as the Karanga or welcome call will be sung by the tribal women to greet you into the village. A welcome dance will follow and you will be received into the Maori fold.
At the Tamaki Maori village, you will be transported back in time, as you walk around. You will see traditional handicrafts being created and weapons being made all in the traditional ways of old. You will also hear songs being sung, telling the proud stories of the people, continuing the oral history of this indigenous race.
The nearest city to the Maori village is the city of Rotorua, a picturesque city known for the lake of the same name. It is a popular destination for locals and international tourists, and is one of the heartlands of Maori culture.
If you are looking for a Rotorua hotel
, the Millennium Hotels and Resorts New Zealand offers special rates and packages for group travel. One of the premier chains of hotels New Zealand
, the Group is offering special rates for accommodations during the New Zealand Rugby World Cup in September. There are regular flights into Rotorua from Sydney, Australia as well as domestic flights from Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown.