Story: Wellington places

Roadside Stories: Wellington Harbour's taniwha

Wellington’s wind-buffeted airport is on land uplifted from the sea by earthquakes. In Māori tradition, the harbour was once a lake occupied by two taniwha (supernatural creatures). One of the taniwha created the harbour entrance by breaking out to the open sea. Polynesian navigator Kupe is also believed to have visited Wellington Harbour.

Listen to a Roadside Story about Wellington Harbour. Roadside Stories is a series of audio guides to places around New Zealand.

Taonga puoro courtesy of Richard Nunns

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How to cite this page:

Chris Maclean, 'Wellington places - Wellington Harbour', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/interactive/35285/roadside-stories-wellington-harbours-taniwha (accessed 7 April 2020)

Story by Chris Maclean, updated 1 Mar 2016