Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Overlooking an East Coast Bay

Today I thought I'd bring you a small photo parade from Omarumutu Marae on the North Island's sunny East Coast. I arrived there at 11.30am almost exactly a year ago, at the beginning of my journey around East Cape. I saw the sign on the main road, just 10 kilometres north of Opotiki in the Bay of Plenty and decided to make a short detour.

The marae has a perfect location, sitting a top of small hill overlooking a pretty sand-swept bay (see below). It is home to the Ngati Ruatakena Hapu (Ngati Rua) of the Te Whakatohea iwi (tribe).

Te Whakatohea territory runs along a 35-km stretch of coastline from Ohiwa Harbour, near Ohope, to Opape just further along the cape road from Omarumutu; and inland through remote, mountainous country to Matawai
And this the Urupa (cemetery) down by the sea below the marae.
The memorial monument within the marae grounds.
Te Whakatohea is made up of six hapu (sub-tribes): Ngati Ruatakena, Ngati Patumoana, Ngari Ngahere, Ngati Tamahaua, Ngati Ira and Te Upokorehe.

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