First charts of New Zealand

New Zealand was discovered by Polynesian seafarers well before the arrival of Europeans. But they did not create written records, and this has meant that the first charts of

Part of story: Charting the sea floor

Drilling the Māui gas field

In 1969, one of the largest gas fields yet discovered was found on New Zealand’s doorstep. The Māui gas field, as it came to be called, lay about 30–50 kilometres offshore from

Part of story: Engineering on the sea floor

Māori settlement

First arrivals

Part of story: Wairarapa region

Early history

The name of the tribe

Part of story: Muaūpoko

Early traditions

Myths and legends The districts of Te Tau Ihu (the top of the South Island) are rich in traditions. Sometimes these are local variants of generic Māori stories. For example, accounts of

Part of story: Te Tau Ihu tribes

Coming of the Pākehā

Early European contact

Part of story: Te Tau Ihu tribes

European ideas about Māori

European ideas about Māori have always been shaped by the theories and beliefs they brought with them – some saw ‘noble savages’, others a ‘dying race’.

Part of story: European ideas about Māori

Fiordland’s coast

A remote and rugged region Most of Fiordland (nearly 1 million hectares) was made a scenic reserve in 1904 and a national park in 1952. The

Part of story: Southland places

Pre-European society


Part of story: Māori

Māori settlement and occupation

Ngāti Kahungunu is the largest iwi (trib

Part of story: Hawke’s Bay region

Experimentation expands, 1970s to 1990s

1970s to 1980s In the 1970s a number of film-makers and artists began to explore film-making as a fine art practice.

Part of story: Experimental film