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Mataatua: The House That Came Home

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Address: Mataatua, Te Manuka Tutahi, 105 Muriwai Drive, Whakatane 3120, New Zealand
Phone Number: +64 7-308 4271
Website
Description: After more than 130 years away, Mataatua Wharenui - New Zealand's only...
After more than 130 years away, Mataatua Wharenui - New Zealand's only repatriated and most travelled Maori meeting house - stands once again as the unifying soul of the Ngati Awa (one of the Maori tribes of the Bay of Plenty) New Zealand. Built in 1875, it travelled to Sydney, Melbourne, Victoria & Albert Museum and South Kensington Museum (London), Dunedin and Otago (South Island) before being rebuilt back in its place of origin, Whakatane, in 2011. Your journey at Mataatua (The Face of God) will Ignite the Soul within, as you discover the extraordinary story of the house that has travelled through time. Mataatua is a living and breathing being and our experience provides an opportunity for intimate engagement with the people of Ngati Awa. Be enthralled as the carvings and legends of Ngati Awa are brought to life through world-class digital technology. A spine tingling experience, HIKO; Legends Carved in Light, is the 2011 GOLD Nga Aho award winner from the New Zealand Designers Institute.
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A superb cultural experience for all ages - go!

The whole experience of a tour at The House that Came Home was terrific, and far exceeded our expectations. The Maori greetings by the staff, the workmanship of the house, the... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed March 9, 2015
TessRead
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London, United Kingdom
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47 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
11 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2015

The whole experience of a tour at The House that Came Home was terrific, and far exceeded our expectations. The Maori greetings by the staff, the workmanship of the house, the experience of being in the house were all superb, but what was really quite something was the sound and light show in the house. No spoilers! So just make... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes
England
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
25 attraction reviews
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 7, 2015

This is a great way to hear about and experience some Maori culture. Our guide was friendly and informative and the house is well worth the visit. The light show and story inside is very good. I loved the personal welcome and ritual we followed as we approached and entered the house. Unlike Rotorura there a no crowds so this... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Auckland
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 1, 2015 via mobile

I took my parents here & we really enjoyed the experience. I have taken guests previously to more commercial places, so it was refreshing to go to this Marae. The whole experience felt genuine and pitched at the right level for guests to gain some interesting history of the place, & learn about traditional Maori culture. The sound & light... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2015

I've visited Whakatane several times yet never fully understood the areas history. This was the complete experience! As well as learning about the local history, this was a great introduction to Maori culture for my Australian girlfriend, which to date is the highlight of her trip here to NZ. Very friendly, knowledgeable and authentic presenters and the state of the... More 

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Godalming, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
10 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 21, 2015

It is worth doing the 1-2 hour presentation. This includes a talk about he early history of Maoris and we were given a traditional Maori welcome before entering the house which has travelled on show in Australia and UK before coming back and being reinstated in Whakatane. It has also been fitted with a modern facility to project a lights... More 

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Whakatane, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2014

What a great experience for Kiwis and tourists alike! Our guides were well-informed, passionate about their culture and above all else, very welcoming. I would recommend this excursion to everyone who is interested in learning more about Maori culture as it specifically pertains to the rituals and customs of the marae (meeting house), as well as a tantalising look at... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 15, 2014

I have been three times now and think it is a wonderful experience. It's a wonderful way to showcase the history of Whakatane. The whole Maori experience is great for us all especially for tourists.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Whakatane, New Zealand
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 1, 2014

This wonderful house with its amazing history is a must see place in Whakatane. The staff are amazing and are there to make this cultural experience something that you will always remember. I have been many times and always get excited when I show visitors around. The detail of workmanship in the wharenui is superb and the Sound and Light... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Whakatane, New Zealand
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 20, 2014

Hospitality, guidance and introduction to the history of the house (wharenui) excellent. The superb craving both old and new, the ambience of the house, its journey are both instructive and a fascinating insight into New Zealand attitudes of the 19th century and the emerging role of Maori today.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Whakatane, New Zealand
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
15 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2014

This is an amazing place to visit. A local person tells of the history of the house before you then go inside to view an informative DVD. The graphics are wonderful as are the carved panels

Was this review helpful? Yes 2

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