From the 14th century onwards, they developed – in isolation for centuries – an independent culture that still lives on today and is a central component of New Zealand’s identity. We show how travelers can best get to know the history and the present of the Maori in New Zealand and where their way of life still has an enormous influence today.
“Waka Hourua” – discover New Zealand with the traditional Maori boat
The Maori are a seafaring people – their iconic catamarans, which have been built to this day, brought their ancestors to New Zealand. The tradition of artful boat building lives on to this day. Near the city of Gisborne, tourists and locals can immerse themselves in a thousand-year history on one of the few Maori sailing boats in the world and learn a lot about the island and its inhabitants. However, some things remain in the dark, such as the exact place of origin of the original Maori settlers. In general, Gisborne is a perfect place to delve deeper into Maori and New Zealand history. The city is known for being so close to the date line that the sun rises so early here, like in hardly any other place in the world. In addition, various meeting houses and cultural sites testify to the importance that the region has for the Maori – it is believed to be the landing point of the first canoe with which the ancestors of the Polynesian people landed on the island.
Festivals as preservers of culture
If you want to get to know the Maori culture in New Zealand, you cannot ignore their music and dance. You get particularly close to their traditional rhythms and instruments at various music festivals, like the Pasifika Festival in Auckland, the largest city on the island. If you are really interested in Maori culture, you should find out more about the numerous events on site – many festivals are rather small and also take place from year to year at different times and in different places.
From New Zealand into the world: explore the cultural influence of the Maori
The culture, history and identity of the Maori are in themselves extremely interesting and inspiring. Added to this, however, is its ongoing influence on Western culture – a trip to New Zealand can be the prelude to a deeper understanding here. The best-known example of the far-reaching significance of Maori culture is likely to be the iconic tribal tattoo, which is particularly popular among surfers and rugby players. Even if the originally sacred ritual of tattooing is now is giving way more and more to a western styleThe traditional patterns and shapes not only live on on the skin of the action star “The Rock”. In addition, Maori aesthetics also greatly influence the entertainment industry. This can be seen at Online slot games like “Maui Mischief” from Betway. The focus here is on the beautiful nature of New Zealand, as well as central concepts from Maori mythology such as “Tiki”, the first person often depicted as a wooden figure. In addition, characters dressed in typical Maori style play a central role. In the games and film industries, on the other hand, the Maori idea of “mana” is often important. In many Polynesian cultures this term describes a universal life energy – in fantasy films and video games, on the other hand, it is often the remaining magical power of a character or a film character. The concept is so firmly anchored in western pop culture that about the famous game “Legend of Mana” from Nintendo was named after it.
Seafaring, music and pop culture – Maori history is everywhere in New Zealand
If you are interested in Maori culture, it is pretty easy in New Zealand. In addition to traditional boat building and music on the island itself, the history of the Polynesian people also lives on in western pop culture. A trip to New Zealand should therefore not only bring to light the unknown, but also a lot of familiar things. The only important thing is to consider various travel tips in advance and plan for the long term. In order to save money on flights, travelers should therefore find out about savings tips and comparison offers in good time. In addition, it is worthwhile to bring your first-aid kit up to date before a trip of this magnitude and to find out about the medication available on site and the prevailing hygiene conditions. In addition, it is always advisable to refer to the experiences of other travelers.