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Mataatua: The House That Came Home

Mataatua, Te Manuka Tutahi, 105 Muriwai Drive, Whakatane 3120, New Zealand
+64 7-308 4271
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Ranked #1 of 6 attractions in Whakatane
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Specialty Museums
Owner description: After more than 130 years away, Mataatua Wharenui - New Zealand's only repatriated and most travelled Maori meeting house - stands once again as the... more » Owner description: 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. « less
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35 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Kellyville, Australia
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
10 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2014

A must do for anyone visiting this part of the Bay of Plenty. We were there with 19 boys as part of a rugby tour. Our time spent at Mataatua was fantastic. The welcome & explanation of the culture and significance of the house and its travels around the world from the local maori elders and guides was very well... More

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Auckland Region, New Zealand
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2014

I went to see this show and it is one of the best experiences i have endured. the light show is AMAZING and i recommend this to anyone

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Brisbane, Australia
Top Contributor
75 reviews 75 reviews
32 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2014

The story of this "house" was amazing to us as it included our home country yet we had no previous knowledge of the house. The tour was fantastic especially as we went in the "off season" so had a private tour. We chose the tour to include the seafood tastes at the end which was a hearty meal and gave... More

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Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
8 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

we were so warmly welcomed by the Maoris - their hospitality is amazing and their history and art well worth learning more about. There was nothing about that great experience that we disliked.

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Sydney, Australia
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 17, 2014 via mobile

This is a great place to visit, the guides were informative and very welcoming in sharing their history and culture. The welcome song was sung beautifully by the female singer. We arrived at the house in gale force winds and rain, inside you felt so safe and secure and surrounded by a very special aura. The lightshow was really well... More

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Perth, Australia
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
16 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 25, 2014 via mobile

I can't recommend this experience highly enough. Our two hosts were so friendly and were willing to share so much knowledge about their culture. I was trying to learn it all but thankfully they gave us a little booklet at the end that we could take home with us. We genuinely felt welcomed into the wharenui. Do this if you... More

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Auckland Region, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014

This is an unforgettable experience, made very special by the light show inside. That was such a surprise and had us captivated. This makes it very different from other cultural experiences and worth going to.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 31, 2014 via mobile

Really enjoyed our visit to Mataatua. Even as a local I learnt so much about the area and the history of the wharenui that I had not known prior. I was extremely impressed by the professionalism, knowledge and friendliness of the staff. Loved the light show and how it told the history in such a unique way, highlighting the various... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Albion Park, Australia
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2014

I was inspired to visit by an article in the Australian Geographic. My husband and I were not disappointed by our visit. The ceremonial greeting, the light show and the staff, were all first rate. At no time did we feel rushed and were able to ask lots of questions whilst enjoying refreshment after the tour. I found the marae... More

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Wellington, New Zealand
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2014

This is a fantastic experience and something just a little different from the other cultural attractions available in New Zealand. The story of the Meeting House that travelled around the world before fiinally returning home is amazing in itself. But the myths, legends and history of Mataatua and Ngati Awa are also fascinating. And it is all brought to life... More

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