Maori Culture & Geothermal
This is a special day we have put together with Delani Brown, master carver of the Tuwharetoa tribe. We have also put it together with Volcanic Air for the helicopter variant.
Start the day with Delani understanding the Maori legends underpinning geothermal activity in this part of the country, and the early uses to which Maori put this geothermal activity. Then we spend some time with GNS, our Department of Geological and Nuclear Science, understanding the commercial applications of geothermal power. It's not widely known that New Zealand leads the world in this relatively new science.
While this is happening you are either visiting Orakei Korako, mid-way between Taupo and Rotorua, or you are flying by helicopter to White Island, active volcano. Both can be accessed by helicopter but the first can also be accessed by road.
It is also possible to add a powhiri to the day. This is a formal Maori welcome which is part ritualized challenge, part spiritual welcome and involves a fierce challenge by three warriors before prayers, speeches, a touching of noses and a bite to eat. Our warriors are extremely proficient, having placed highly in national competitions and our kapa haka group are longstanding champions. Our particular style is then to sit down and enjoy a sharing session which can focus on culture, beliefs, combat, singing, weaving, carving and so on. This powhiri can also be run as an independent option, and we have combined it with the excellent kai waho culinary experience at remote Tamau Pa.
The day finishes with Delani completing the circle and explaining how Maori have continued their relationship with geothermal activity, most recently as major investors in the commercial technology and resource with an eye on the future and a foot in the past.