Waitangi Day Celebrations

Traditional Māori kai (food) is so delicious, so popular that a calendar of Kai Festivals coincide with the national holiday – Waitangi Day.

6 February 2015

Traditional Māori kai (food) is so delicious, so popular that a calendar of Kai Festivals coincide with the national holiday – Waitangi Day. Your only requirement to attend? Bring an empty belly.


South Island: Nelson
Nelson’s seventh annual Waitangi Day International Kai Festival is set to be a stunner with Whakatu Marae and Founders Heritage Park playing host to this celebration of indigenous culture and kai. Guests are welcomed in the morning with a Powhiri (a Maori welcome) and privy to Kapa Haka performances in the afternoon. More than 40 stalls sell food cooked up by the locals plus a traditional hangi (meat and vege cooked in the earth) will feed more than 400. Get in early! Last year these goodies sold out by mid-afternoon. itson.co.nz
 

North Island: Waitangi
A dawn service kicks off the day that includes over 100 market stalls proffering craft, clothing and, of course, kai: sample local seafood, paua or mussel fritters and marinated fish. Tuck into Māori fried bread, Rewana bread and the Waitangi Day special: halved watermelons chocka with ice cream. waitangi.org.nz
 

North Island: Rotorua
The Whakarewarewa living Māori village in New Zealand’s geothermal capital commemorates Waitangi Day with Whakanuia, a participatory celebration focussed on learning about Māori culture including kai, crafts, medicine, local legend and history. whakarewarewa.com

 

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