Exploring Māori Culture in New Zealand
As well as its stunning landscapes, extraordinary wildlife and friendly people, New Zealand is famed for its unique Māori culture. Experiencing it first hand gives a lasting, special connection to our country, and many of the most celebrated experiences, like these, are accessible.
Waitangi Treaty Grounds, Bay of Islands, Northland
The Treaty of Waitangi is of immense importance to New Zealand, and a tour of the grounds will immerse you in its history and significance. Experience a powhiri (the traditional Māori welcome) accompanied by waiata (songs), poi, and the iconic haka. The grounds have some hilly sections: a companion is recommended for certain parts.
Tane Mahuta, Waipoua Forest, Northland
Wander through the ancient Waipoua Forest and encounter Tane Mahuta, the mighty Lord of the Forest and New Zealand’s largest living kauri tree. The pathway is accessible, offering a mystical connection to nature at no cost. Tāne Mahuta forest walk.
Discover an unparalleled collection of Māori and Pacific treasures, including rare carvings, a Marae (Māori meeting grounds), and the awe-inspiring Māori war canoe crafted from a giant totara tree. Daily Māori cultural performances include waiata, poi dances, traditional Māori weaponry and the world-famous haka. Get a taste via the virtual accessibility tour. Auckland Museum.
Te Puia, Rotorua
Te Puia is a geothermal wonderland with great cultural significance. Witness the power of geothermal activity while learning how it was harnessed by Māori. Observe skilled carvers at work, gaining insights into their heritage. Not all paths at Te Puia are wheelchair accessible.
Te Pā Tū Māori Village, Rotorua
This recreated traditional village, nestled beneath a 200-year-old native forest, showcases the pre-European Māori way of life. Delve into honoured traditions, culinary delights, stories, songs and performing arts that endure to this day.
Te Papa Museum, Wellington
As the nation’s museum Te Papa displays a diverse array of Māori taonga (treasures). A guided tour will deepen your understanding of Māori Culture, including the Mana Māori tours or the private Kinaki Māori experience tour. Te Papa
Waka Abel Tasman, Nelson
Dark Sky Project, Lake Tekapo
Explore Māori astronomy and its cultural significance at the Dark Sky Project base on the shores of Lake Tekapo. Their immersive daytime interactive journey is welcomingly accessible.
To enjoy these accessible experiences be sure to call ahead to discuss your individual accessibility needs. And, for transportation, contact the friendly team at Freedom Mobility.
Tourism New Zealand have some great resources to find out more about our Maori Culture before you come. Learn about the Language, Performing Arts, the Haka and Powhiri (welcoming ceremony) and more.
Already travelled here? Then share your accessible experiences with us by emailing [email protected].