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Maori Migration - Mataatua Waka

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  • Toroa, Captain of the Mataatua Waka (deceased)
    Toroa and Puhi-Kai-Ariki Toroa and his people settled at the pa called Kapu-te-rangi, on a high terrace above the present township of Whaka-tane. This was originally built by Toi-Kai-rakau. The f...
  • Puhi-moana-ariki (deceased)
    Excerp from [ ] Mataatua, Te Aratāwhao, and Hīnakipākau-o-te-rupe As well as being linked to Ngāpuhi in the north, the Mataatua is said to have landed in the Bay of Plenty. According to the traditi...
  • Muriwai (deceased)
    Muriwai’s Cave, Whakatāne Muriwai was the wife of Toroa, captain of the Mataatua canoe, and is said to have lived in this cave after they arrived from Hawaiki.
  • Wairaka (c.1240 - d.)
    Wairaka was the daughter of Toroa, captain of the Mataatua canoe. It is said that when the Mataatua came adrift, she saved the canoe and uttered the words, ‘Me whakatāne au i ahau! (I must act like a m...
  • Ruaihona (deceased)

In Māori tradition, Mātaatua was one of the great voyaging canoes by which Polynesians migrated to New Zealand. Māori traditions say that the Mātaatua was initially sent from Hawaiki to bring supplies of kūmara to Māori settlements in New Zealand. The Mātaatua was captained by Toroa, accompanied by his brother, Puhi; his sister, Muriwai; his son, Ruaihona; and daughter, Wairaka.His half-brother Tāneatua was the tohunga.

Because of rough weather its crew had to board other canoes, it is said that the Kurahaupo chiefs Te Moungaroa and Turu joined Mataatua.