Experience Matariki at the historic Kororipo Heritage Basin

22-23 July 2023

Understanding Matariki

Matariki, also known as the Māori New Year, is a significant event in the Māori lunar calendar. It marks the rising of the Pleiades star cluster (Matariki) and the start of the New Year. Traditionally, this was a time for remembering those who had passed on, celebrating new life, and planning for the future. Matariki has always been about coming together, sharing and learning, and what better way to commemorate this than with our community event.

Discover Kororipo Heritage Basin

The Kororipo Heritage Basin is steeped in history and cultural significance, making it an ideal location for our event. Here, the bustling trading settlement of Kororipo Pā once stood, serving as a focal point for transient Māori and European settlers. It was a place of both strategic and practical importance for Ngāpuhi, housing chiefs who played major roles in the musket wars and early contact between Māori and Europeans.

Within the basin, you’ll find the Kororipo Pā, a fortified hill settlement providing a clear view of the Kerikeri River basin and the surrounding area. This Pā was crucial as a launching and landing site for waka, thus a strategic location for trade, defense, and overseeing the nearby fertile lands.

Matariki at Kororipo

The connection between Matariki and the Kororipo Heritage Basin is profound, capturing the essence of unity, respect, and understanding our past to navigate the future. By celebrating Matariki in the heart of a place so crucial to our ancestral history, we reinforce our ties to the land, the past, and each other. The Pā’s elevated viewpoint offers an unobstructed view of the night sky, providing the perfect setting for our Matariki stargazing activity.

This year, our Mānawatia a Puanga Matariki Whānau Event is set to be a truly unique experience, filled with engaging activities, traditional games, hāngī, and storytelling. We celebrate Matariki in the spirit of whānau and whanaungatanga, a sentiment reflected in the story of Kororipo Pā.