The Waka - Te Hono ki Aotearoa - New Zealand

The Waka - Te Hono ki Aotearoa

Finding solutions together

In 2010 a Māori  war canoe (waka taua) Te Hono ki Aotearoa  or The Link to New Zealand was ceremonially gifted, on a permanent loan, to the Museum Volkenkunde, the Netherlands Ethnology Museum in Leiden. This is the only waka taua in the Northern Hemisphere and represents the strong bonds between Dutch and Māori, the indigenous population of Aoteaora New Zealand. 

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Waka Te Hono ki Aotearoa at Waitangi

The waka crew from Leiden University’s Royal Students Rowing Association ‘Njord’ are the caretakers of Te Hono ki Aotearoa. Each year Dutch crew members travel to Aotearoa New Zealand to take part in the Waitangi Day waka pageant. During this special ceremonial event on the National Day of New Zealand, crew members participate in the rowing and enjoy the hospitality of Maori rowers by living, eating and drinking together and learn Te Reo Māori  (Māori  language an official language of the country). In 2020 the Dutch Embassy celebrated together with Māori counterparts from Toi Māori  the tenth anniversary by organizing a number of events. The Embassy looks forward to support the travel of crew members in the years to come to strengthen even further the people-to-people connections between our two countries.

A documentary “Te Hono ki Aotearoa” by Dutch Kiwi filmmaker Jan Bieringa was made about the commissioning, the making, and the handover of the ceremonial waka.