Nestled in the midst of Rotorua's ancient Tawa forest is the Tamaki Maori Village, the most award-winning Maori cultural attraction in New Zealand.
Journey back in time, a time before the European settlement, and explore the Maori way of life. Learn about their tribal customs and protocols, gain an insight into the story of the Maori migration, witness cultural performances and feast on a traditional hangi meal.
Start by enjoying a scenic coach journey from your Rotorua accommodation to the Tawa forest, during which you'll hear interesting stories of the Maori legends from your driver. You and your fellow guests must also carry out the honourable task of assigning a Chief to represent your group upon arrival - an esteemed title in Maoridom.
When you arrive, you are not permitted to enter beyond the Tamaki village's outskirts until a formal welcome ceremony has been performed by members of the Maori tribe. The 'Chiefs' chosen to represent each group are lined up in front of the village warriors who perform the 'haka', a traditional war dance proclaiming strength and prowess. After a peace offering has been made by each chief, you are then welcomed to listen to the 'Karanga', a welcome call, and watch the 'Powhiri', a welcome dance which permits safe passage into the village Tamaki.
As you wander around the village, take the time to visit their traditional houses of learning dedicated to 'Haka', 'Poi', and warrior training. You will be given the opportunity to participate in learning these activities.
Enjoy displays of weaving, carving and tattooing before being led to the village waterway where you'll hear stories about the great Maori migration in magnificent carved canoes (wakas) across the Pacific Ocean to New Zealand.
You will then head to the authentic hangi pit, where your traditional hangi meal, consisting of meats and smoky vegetables has been cooked underground for many hours. Once ready, the baskets laden with food are lifted from the pit before being prepared for a huge hangi feast to follow. Please note that vegetarian and gluten free food is available on request (please mention this in message box on checkout page). From here, you'll head to the sacred meeting house, where you will enjoy a cultural performance complete with harmonious singing and traditional dances.
Lastly, you will join together with the villagers to feast on the huge hangi meal, including hot lamb and chicken that were just pulled from the hangi pit.
Main Cultural Hangi - Traditional Menu
Prime New Zealand Lamb & Chicken
Potatoes, Kumara, Carrots Stuffing
Steamed NZ Green Lip Mussels
Fresh Fish cooked in White Sauce
Condiments – Gravy, Mint Sauce,
Seasonal Garden Salad
Maori Rewana bread
Homemade Pavlova with Kiwi Fruit
Hangi Steamed Pudding
Custard & Cream
Tea, Coffee & Hot Chocolate included
Vegetarian & Gluten Free Options Available and must be ordered at the time of the booking. Please mention your dietary requirements in special request field on payments page.
How to get there:
1. Free pickup and drop off from your local Rotorua Hotel, Motel or Backpacker Hostel. Please mention your pick-up address in the message box provided during the booking.
2. Take a bus from their office in Rotorua from the below address:
1220 Hinemaru Street