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.
Te Whakatohea is made up of six hapu (sub-tribes): Ngati Ruatakena, Ngati Patumoana, Ngari Ngahere, Ngati Tamahaua, Ngati Ira and Te Upokorehe.