Event date: 8/06/2024 - 20/07/2024 Export event
Puanga Matariki ki Te Māra a Tāne
ZEALANDIA Ecosanctuary
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Puanga Matariki ki Te Māra a Tāne

The rising of Puanga and Matariki signify the beginning of the Māori new year and the chance to connect with whānau, celebrate the year gone by, and set intentions for the year to come. Spending time in te taiao/nature is a great way to free your mind and give yourself space to reflect, on your own or with loved ones.

Next time you visit the sanctuary, make sure to grab a copy of our Puanga Matariki Whānau Activity Book for fun things to do when visiting, and at home. Take some time to notice your surroundings as you explore the sanctuary, learn about the stars of Puanga and Matariki, and set goals as a whānau for the year ahead.

There are also plenty of activities for all ages throughout July, including puppet shows and art workshops.

Be sure to check out Louis Mikaere’s (Ngāi Te Rangi, Ngāi Takoto, Ngāti Maru, Ngāti Haua) exhibition in Te Māra Toi on your way up to have a special Matariki bite to eat at Rātā Café, including a glittery night sky cake.


Wondering about Puanga?

For many, Matariki is the star cluster that we look to low on our horizon to mark the start of the Māori New Year. But in some parts of the county, Matariki is not visible, and so instead Puanga is the star that is celebrated. Puanga is a single star that is easier to see, rising a little higher than Matariki, and just like Matariki, it is a time of reflection, goal setting, harvest, planting, preparation, learning, and celebration.

In our region, Ngāti Toa acknowledges Matariki, while Te Āti Awa and Taranaki Whānui celebrate Puanga. This is a tradition they brought down with them when they migrated to the Wellington region as they could see Puanga better than Matariki in Taranaki.

That is why in this part of the country we celebrate Puanga and Matariki, recognising both special traditions!


Documents to download

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Weekends & Public Holidays: Check out our Summer Talks.

Daily: Zealandia runs a variety of guided tours every day.