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 man!), which gave Whakatāne its name. Others say it was Muriwai, Toroa’s sister, who saved the canoe.
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Photograph by Shirley Williams
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