Monday, 10 October 2011

NZ: Te Puia, Rotorua

Rotorua is Maori heartland.  We couldn't leave it without experiencing some Maori culture, even if it's a touristy bit of it.  We went to Te Puia, the New Zealand Maori Arts & Crafts Institue, which offered an evening Maori culture package including a Maori welcome, kapa haka (Maori performing arts concert), Maori feast with traditional hangi (earth-cooked oven meal) and a night tour of the illuminated Pohutu geyser.  The culture showcase was dignified, the food excellent and the geyser spectacular.  It turned out to be a very enjoyable evening.

Maori carving

At the entrance, monumental posts spiral towards the heavens, each representing a divine realm

Welcome ceremony

Dance performance

Maori singers - powerful operatic performances

Spectacular Pohutu geyser, the largest in the Southern Hemisphere

Stone at entrance that you rub for good luck as you leave

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