Story: Walking tracks

Hongi’s track

Hongi’s track

This track goes through the bush between lakes Rotoiti and Rotoehu, near Rotorua. It was originally known as Te Ara-o-Hinehopu (the pathway of Hinehopu). A famous ancestress, Hinehopu, used it to travel between her two homes. Midway along the track she met her future husband, Pikiao III. The spot is now marked by a tree known as the Wishing Tree. The name ‘Hongi’s track’ recalls the time in 1823 when Hongi Hika and his army of Ngāpuhi warriors hauled their canoes along the track, enabling them to attack the Te Arawa people on Mokoia Island in Lake Rotorua.

This photograph by Thomas Pringle shows the track in 1908. It is now part of State Highway 30.

Using this item

Alexander Turnbull Library, Parliamentary Library Collection
Reference: PA1-f-179-54-1
Photograph by Thomas Pringle

Permission of the Alexander Turnbull Library, National Library of New Zealand, Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa, must be obtained before any re-use of this image.

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How to cite this page:

Jock Phillips, 'Walking tracks - Māori highways', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, http://www.TeAra.govt.nz/en/photograph/12796/hongis-track (accessed 2 August 2021)

Story by Jock Phillips, published 24 Sep 2007, updated 1 Apr 2016