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Matariki

Mānawatia a Matariki

Māori believe that appearance of Matariki in the morning sky in mid-winter marks the Māori New Year, or Te Mātahi o te Tau. It signals a time to remember those who have passed, celebrate the present and plan for the future. It’s a time to spend with whānau and friends – to enjoy kai (food), waiata (song), tākaro (games) and haka.

Our tūpuna (ancestors) would look to Matariki for help with their harvesting. When Matariki disappeared in April/May, it was time to preserve crops for the winter season. When it re-appeared in June/July, tūpuna would read the stars to predict the upcoming season – clear and bright stars promised a warm and abundant winter while hazy stars warned of a bleak winter.

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Because Māori follow the Māori lunar calendar, not the European calendar, the dates for Matariki change every year. This year we celebrate Matariki on the 24 June (our first national Matariki public holiday).

Marking the Māori New Year

The three major principles underpinning traditional Matariki celebrations are

Te Tōnga o Matariki

23 May 2022
Matariki whanaunga kore
Remember those who have passed
Remember

The Rise of Matariki

21-24 June 2022
Matariki hunga nui
Celebrate the present
Celebrate

Matariki

24 June 2022
Kia whakatakatūria mō te wāheke
Plan for the future
Plan

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Matariki in the News

Matariki public holiday

The Matariki Public Holiday Bill has been passed. The Government has created a new public holiday for Aotearoa by passing the Te Ture mō te Hararei Tūmatanui o Te Kāhui… Read…