What a super exciting week it has been folks! Napier Conference Centre hosted the NZ Māori Tourism inaugural “Dragon’s Den” hui, which culminated in four winners. Hawkes Bay mana whenua (local Māori tribe) company Napier Māori Tours won the “China NZ Year of Tourism 2019” award, as the judges felt Hinewai and Cameron embraced the synergy between kai (food), manākitanga (hospitality), and tikanga (culture) within both Māori and Chinese cultures. To read more about this event click here.
I was so fortunate to be part of the rōpū (group) to visit our very special “Star Compass”, only ten minutes drive from Napier township. On the way to Clive, you need to slow down, and turn into Waitangi Regional Park, where local charitable trust Ātea a Rangi run educational programmes, events and tours. If you are near this area, you are invited to “Te Whakawhitinga o te Rā”, the Spring Equinox event, on Saturday 22 September 2018, at 5.45am. After our awesome famils tour, we were dropped back to Napier’s iconic Emporium Barwhich exceeded its role providing a delicious meal, matched with stunning Hawkes Bay wine whilst having a wicked kanikani (dance) with vivacious Kiwi band White Chapel Jak.
After the New Zealand Māori Tourism gathering, came the eagerly awaited Tourism Export Council conference, bringing an array of committed tourism advocates and industry professionals together, to endorse its commitment to sustainability and Aotearoa’s tourism growth! I was invited to join the enthusiastic famils group heading up to Waimārama Māori Tours. We were warmly greeted by Uncle Robert, Aunty Helen, and Ike, who are the stars behind this beautiful local tour company. We drove down to Waimārama beach, as the brilliant morning sun shone over us, Uncle Robert explained the deep significance of their tipuna (ancestor) Kura, how she saved their people by swimming out to “Motu-o-Kura” (the island of Kura), carrying fresh water in her gourd. We then travelled up to their marae for a formal pōwhiri ( Maori welcome), and taken down to Hakikino Conservation Reserve, to feed the tuna (eels). Waimārama Māori Tours are strongly committed to “kaitiakitanga” (guardianship, protection, and preservation). Their native nursery and whānau (family) farm is managed based on traditional Māori values. Waimārama Māori Tours offers a wide range of boutique experiences, a definite #nzmustdo for all manuhiri (visitors) coming into Hawke’s Bay this summer!
Discover this awesome Hawke’s Bay Waka experience and tick off your bucket list! Sailings over this summer season are on Tuesdays and Saturdays, with a two hour session, meeting outside the waka in West Quay, Ahuriri, Napier. Follow our social media pages to keep updated on the booking details.
“A lofty mountain, one cannot ascend. A great ocean wave, with a canoe, one is able.”
We leave you with a Ngāti Kahungunu whakataukī:
“Te hāro o te kāhu ki tuawhakarere”
“View the future with the insight of a hawke.”
Arohanui Louise Booth