26 February 2016

NewsLine is a short weekly summary of stories that may be of interest to those involved in the Māori Tourism community.

New tool for tourism data

The New Zealand Tourism Dashboard - a one-stop shop for all information about tourism sector trends and forecasts - was launched this week.

The Dashboard brings together a range of tourism datasets produced by MBIE and Statistics New Zealand into one easy-to-use tool.

Information is presented using dynamic graphs and data tables, which makes it easy to look at trends in tourism through selecting and modifying interactive charts and tables. Read more here.


Strong support for New Zealand from Australia’s largest travel agencies

Tourism New Zealand and Air New Zealand recently hosted a meeting with some of the most influential players in Australian travel trade to discuss the challenges and opportunities currently affecting the trans-Tasman tourism market.  

The event was attended by Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism, John Key, along with representatives from Flight Centre, Helloworld, the Australian Federation of Travel Agents and Expedia.

Tourism New Zealand’s Director of Trade, PR and Major Events René de Monchy says: “Our key stakeholders are telling us that New Zealand continues to deliver an outstanding visitor experience which is why we remain the number one international destination of choice for Australians.

“There is significant appetite around the table to see trans-Tasman tourism grow even further. Arrival growth from Australia is strong and barriers to travel are low,” he says. Read more here. 

Master waka builder's plea for navigation school

Celebrated navigator and and waka builder Hekenukumai Busby has made a plea for support to teach future generations the art of Polynesian voyaging.

Mr Busby, 83, has recounted for the Waitangi Tribunal his role in the waka renaissance and celestial navigation over the past 30 years.

He said he was confident the carving school he had set up would carry on, but the navigation school he dreamed of was still incomplete, and he was worried it would not be built in his lifetime. Read more here.

Waitangi: Back to our beginnings

Seeing your own country through the eyes of a tourist can reignite a love affair with the beautiful land in which we're blessed to live. Like seeing a lover through the eyes of a new acquaintance, it reminds you of what you are in danger of taking for granted.

The unique thing about the Bay of Islands is that you can feel like a tourist, and explore a deep core of our homeland, all in one go.

We've been to Waitangi before, but the new Museum of Waitangi was the catalyst for this family trip. It really does upgrade the experience. Read more here.


Jennifer Ward-Lealand’s “quite scary” six-year reo journey

I understand that your reo journey started at Kura Pō, at Unitec in Auckland, about six years ago. And I imagine that, at times, it’s been a struggle.

Yes, I started with just one night a week and went for nearly four years. I’d been studying alongside a friend, Jo, and we ended up doing part-time study, and then a full-time rūmaki course, Te Aupikitanga ki te reo Kairangi, at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa out in Mangere.

I have to say it was a massive year. Quite scary — and a real challenge. But I quite like a challenge and I kept going, even though I’d be telling myself off all the time for getting things wrong. For the last two years, I’ve continued studying at Te Ara Poutama at AUT. And, next month, I start again back at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa doing Te Pīnakitanga with Anaru Martin. But I have to say, it has never been about getting a degree, only to keep speaking and learning the reo — keeping it in my life in some way, every day.

My friend Jo and I made an agreement a long time ago that we’d only talk to each other in te reo Māori. Would only text each other in te reo Māori. Would only email each other in te reo Māori. Sometimes that means you have to take a long pause and have a good think about what you’re trying to say. And try not to construct your thoughts in a Pākehā way — but to think kia Māori te reo. Read more here.

Gisborne iwi backs art-to-UN project

When Karl Johnstone headed from Rotorua to New York last week he was backed by Gisborne iwi Te Aitanga-a-Mahaki, who are supporting him and a United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Originally from Gisborne, Mr Johnstone’s job as head of Rotorua’s New Zealand Māori Arts and Crafts Institute led to him being charged with driving Māori Tu, a major art project related to the Declaration.

The purpose of this week’s trip is to discuss the logistics around giving the Māori Tu to the UN. Read more here.


3000km cycle tour sends riders from Cape Reinga to Bluff

A new annual cycle tour will see riders traverse 3000km to make its way down the entire country.

Dubbed Tour Aotearoa, the Cape Reinga to Bluff brevet has about 250 riders ready for its debut on Sunday.

Event organiser Jonathan Kennett, who is better known as the New Zealand Cycle Trail project manager, said the ride was a brevet.

"That means that people ride at their own pace and stop when and where they like." Read more here.

Havelock i-Site trial exceeds expectations

A pilot i-Site has been successful at getting travellers to stay in Havelock, organisers say. 

Havelock Community Association community development adviser Hans Neilson said the trial information centre, which had been running since October, had been attracting plenty of visitors. "It's been awesome," he said. 

"Initially it was just a trial for the summer, we were pretty confident it would do well and it's performed beyond our expectations."

Pelorus Mail Boat owner Jim Baillie said he had been doing a "roaring trade" thanks to the i-Site. Read more here.

Rousing powhiri welcomes international Tattoo performers to Wellington

The sound of a rousing, passionate haka echoing off the stands in Westpac Stadium is nothing new, but it's not every day Ka Mate is performed on the pitch by a group of more than 200 people, in front of a Scottish castle. 

The thrilling powhiri was a welcome to more than 1000 international performers, and set the stage for the first performance of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo in Wellington.

Hundreds of dancers, marchers, musicians and drummers took a break from rehearsals to gather in the stadium for the powhiri, performed by eight kapa haka groups who had come together to perform in the Tattoo.  Read more here.


Regional Economic Activity Report

Explore your region using either the mobile or web app - look at international visits,  visitor spend, economic performance, and more.


Listing on

A presence on can help grow your business by connecting you with consumers considering a visit to New Zealand. A key role of the website is to drive qualified traffic to you. There is no charge for listing on - update your details, or list here.


Planning for Inbound Success

Together with the Tourism Export Council, this is a guide to working with New Zealand Inbound Operators. Read it here, or email us to request a hard copy.