Hōkūleʻa & Hikianalia arrive to the Bay of Islands - Feature

By Dean Nathan
  • Northland

If it wasn't for the double-hulled canoe Hōkūle'a making its initial voyage to NZ, perhaps the Māori world would not have been inspired to revive the knowledge and skills of our ocean-voyaging ancestors.

Yesterday Hōkūle'a's sister canoe 'Hikianalia' and its crew were officially welcomed onto the shores of Waitangi.

According to Joe Conrad, “I was nearly brought to tears on seeing their arrival and hence Ngātokimatawhaorua went out to bring the crew to shore.”

Former MP, Shane Jones says, “Lest we forget that if not for the Hawaiians and their canoe perhaps the Māori world would not have been inspired to revive the knowledge and skills handed down to us by our seafaring ancestors.”

Te Tii Marae at Waitangi hold relics of the first voyage by the Hōkūle'a, when elders at the time were so impressed by what they had achieved that they honoured our Hawaiian relatives by naming them the sixth tribe of Northland, Ngāti Ruawāhia.

Since before time the open sea has been the marae of our ancestors, and today their legacy has come to fruition with many double-hulled canoe from Polynesia currently sailing the oceans of the world by celestial navigation.

Joe Conrad says, “Our ancestors live again through their knowledge passed down from the legendary explorer Kupe and this is clarification that all of that knowledge and information and related history is correct.”