Is non earchillibus ea sim conse quis est eatur sereperum aliae. Ab is ilia quiatur? Quiam fuga. Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus ciisimi

Way of Life

Karawhiua! Give it a Go!

The Māori language - Te Reo Māori - is only spoken in Aotearoa New Zealand and its use in everyday life by locals and visitors is encouraged.

If you know even more words or phrases, you'll have a better understanding of our culture - and Māori people will love you for it!

Find more words and phrases you may come across, what they mean, and where you can go to find out more.

Way of Life

Introduction (Pepeha)

A traditional Māori introduction of yourself. It tells people who you are, linking you to the land, mountain, river, sea, tribe, subtribe, whakapapa (genealogy) and marae (sacred meeting place). Here is a simple pepeha:

Tihe mauri ora!

Ko (name of your waka) te waka
Ko (name of your mountain) te maunga
Ko (name of your river) te awa
Ko (name of your tribe) te iwi
Ko (name of your sub tribe) te hapū
Ko (your name) ahau

Let there be life!
My canoe is (name of your canoe)
My mountain is (name of mountain)
My river is (name of your tribe)
My tribe is (name of your tribe)
My sub-tribe is (name of your sub-tribe)
I am (your name)

Inu (Drinks)

The word inu is a generic term for a drink and drinking.

  • Huka - sugar
  • Kawhe - coffee
  • Kawhe pango roa - long black
  • Kawhe pango poto - short black
  • Kaputino - cappuccino
  • Kawhe kore kohuka - flat white
  • Kirimi - cream
  • Moka - mocha
  • Miraka - milk
  • Miraka kore kirimi - trim milk
  • Pia - beer
  • Rate - latte
  • Tī - tea
  • Wai - water
  • Wai reka - soft drink
  • Wai ārani - orange juice
  • Waina - wine

Kai

Is non earchillibus ea sim conse quis est eatur sereperum aliae. Ab is ilia quiatur? Quiam fuga.
Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus ciisimi Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium fugiae nos sed utaturibea sit omnis entiaepta volum Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium sit omnis entiaepta volum. Quiam fuga. Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus. Is non earchillibus ea sim conse quis est eatur sereperum aliae. 

Ab is ilia quiatur? Quiam fuga. Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus ciisimi Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium fugiae nos sed utaturibea sit omnis entiaepta volum Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium sit omnis entiaepta volum. Quiam fuga. Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus. Is non earchillibus ea sim conse quis est eatur sereperum aliae. 

Ab is ilia quiatur? Quiam fuga. Itatibus alit velibustorum et et quia viti cones invenis alitasp ellistiassum quisserum que illatus ciisimi Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium fugiae nos sed utaturibea sit omnis entiaepta volum Ut et, sitempos et, cus aut re nistium sit

Kai (food)

Traditional Māori foods are still enjoyed today and incorporated into dishes that suit modern tastes. The hāngī or earth oven is a traditional cooking method for a feast that is still popular today.

  • Hāngī - food cooked in an earth oven
  • Heihei - chicken
  • Huamata - salad
  • Huarākau - fruit
  • Hua whenua - vegetables
  • Ika - fish
  • Keke - cake
  • Kūmara - sweet potato
  • Mīti - meat
  • Paraoa - bread
  • Pihikete - biscuit
  • Purini - dessert
  • Rīwai - potato

Kaimoana

For many people, including Māori, kai is a very important part of culture because gathering, preparing and sharing kai shows hospitality and respect for visitors. Food and the culture and customs around it create a sense of community.

Kaimoana refers to food which has been gathered from the sea: 

  • Pāua - abalone
  • Ika -fish
  • Kōura - crayfish
  • Kina - sea egg
  • Karengo - seaweed
  • Wheke - octopus
  • Kahitua - beach
  • Pipi Tuangi - cockle

Māori Language

The Māori Language Commission promotes and fosters the use of Māori as a living language.

Te Reo Māori is one of the three official languages of New Zealand. The other two are English and New Zealand Sign Language.

Try its resources for a pronunciation guide and to learn helpful words and phrases - Learning Te Reo Māori.

Māori Music and Performing Arts

Māori song, dance and music were important ways of celebrating, retaining and transmitting the life, customs and history of Māori.

Traditionally there was a song (waiata) for every occasion and many are still sung today. Modern compositions often reflect the issues of the day.

Musical instruments (taonga puoro) were part of many rituals and were also played to entertain. Many drew on the sounds of nature and were made from gourds, bone, shell, stone and wood.

The haka is a traditional dance made famous by our national rugby team, the All Blacks. But haka includes a wide range of dance styles, including many performed by women. A haka could entertain, criticise or praise someone, welcome guests, celebrate important ceremonies, honour ancestors or the dead, and teach traditions. 

Kapa Haka is a modern term for a team (kapa) that performs traditional and contemporary Māori dances such as the haka. Their repertoire includes poi, haka, and other activities performed by cultural groups or individuals, and can take place in formal or informal settings, on marae, at schools, or at Kapa Haka festivals.

 

Māori phrases

Greeting someone in the Māori language is a simple way of communicating respect, appreciation and friendliness.

  • Kia ora - hi, hello or thank you
  • Tēnā koe - hello to one person
  • Tēnā kōrua - hello to two people
  • Tēnā koutou - hello to three or more people
  • Mōrena - good morning
  • Haera mai - welcome
  • Kei te pēhea koe? - how are you?
  • Kei te pai - I'm great
  • Ka pai - that's good
  • Ka kiti anō - see you later

Marae

A Māori community's hub is its marae, where Māori retain their tribal history and stories, genealogy, customs and traditions.

These days some marae are also based in non-traditional settings such as hospitals, schools and universities. Even Auckland International Airport has a marae!

Tips when visiting a marae:

  • Smoking during the powhiri (welcome) and inside marae buildings is not allowed.
  • Avoid walking in front of the speakers.
  • In the wharekai (dining hall) do not sit on tables or kitchen benches as these surfaces are for food.
  • Greet your hosts with 'Kia ora!'

Pōwhiri

The powhiri is a traditional ceremony of welcome for visitors.

Tangata Whenua are the hosts or local people who belong to the marae. Visitors are manuhiri.

The wero or ritual challenge occurs when important visitors are being welcomed. A warrior will lay a small token before a visitor to test whether a visitor is a friend or foe.

The karanga or call of welcome is given by a woman from the host side and she will be responded to by a karanga from the manuhiri. This exchange welcomes visitors, identifies them and their purpose, and acknowledges the dead.

Visitors walk slowly onto the marae during the karanga. After standing briefly as a mark of respect, visitors can take their seat. Men occupy seats in front and women are seated behind them.

Formal speeches or whaikōrero are then made by the hosts and visitors. Each speech is supported by a song (waiata) that is usually appropriate to the speech or occasion.

After the speeches, the visitors usually present a gift or koha to their hosts. This is then followed by visitors greeting their hosts with a handshake and hongi, a Māori custom of pressing noses.

To cap off formal proceedings, food (kai) is shared, in keeping with Māori hospitality.

© 2017 NZ Maori Tourism Society