Sunday, May 17, 2009

Ngati Porou Heartland

Ruatoria, Eastland. May 2009. Ajr
It was a quiet weekend morning when I rolled into the little East Cape town of Ruatoria, so unfortunately the Ngati Porou tourism office was closed. Their cute little blue building sits in the main street. The Ngati Porou tribal region is in the far`east of the North Island - from Potikirua in the north of East Cape to Te Toka a Taiau in the south. It's a remote and beautiful region and the Ngati Porou people have a strong sense of sovereignty, or mana motuhake. The tribe's most significant geographical icon is nearby sacred mountain of Hikurangi, which is at the centre of many legends. Ngati Porou now manage the mountain and access to it is granted here, in the little blue office in the main street of Ruatoria.

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