Tarai Waka

Waka building festival

Tarai waka (waka building) events are held elsewhere in the Pacific, in Hawaii and other Pacific nations but never before on this scale in Te Tai Tokerau. This goal is to build six waka from other Pacific nations over a 2-3 week period. These waka will be between 6-10 metres (20-33 feet) in length, fully carved and lashed in a traditional manner.

The event is one which is community focused, bringing together teams of people who share their knowledge, working together to create a waka which represents their culture. The waka will be built in a public location with traditional rituals involved in this important art form. Local schools and communities will be able to participate and the waka will be ready for when the national Flotilla visits the Bay of Islands as part of the national commemorations.

It is hoped that this will become a Triennial event.

The ongoing Tai Tokerau voyaging tradition