Story: Bay of Plenty region

Statue of Wairaka

Statue of Wairaka

This statue at the mouth of the Whakatāne River commemorates the bravery of Wairaka. When the Mataatua canoe arrived from Hawaiki, the ancestral homeland of Māori, the crew left it unmoored. It was in danger of being swept away on the tide, but Wairaka and other women on board saved it. The statue was donated by former cabinet minister Sir William Sullivan, a local resident, in 1964, and sculpted by W. R. Allen of Auckland.

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Te Ara - The Encyclopedia of New Zealand
Photograph by Shirley Williams

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How to cite this page:

Malcolm McKinnon, 'Bay of Plenty region - Māori traditions', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 18 June 2024)

Story by Malcolm McKinnon, updated 1 Aug 2016