Your full day tour with your personal driver/host will explore the Kerikeri Basin, North of Waitangi, where the Maori Chief Hone Hika first welcomed missionaries in 1819 resulting in the establishment of a Church Mission Settlement. This interaction set up the framework for New Zealand's bi-cultural society. Of particular historical and architectural interest will be a visit to New Zealand's oldest house, Kemp House (1821-22), and an historic stone store (1832).
Within the Kerikeri Basin you will visit one of the largest tracts of reserved native forest in Northland (12,000 acres) of kauri, podocarp and hardwood trees and a rich diversity of plant species, some of which are found nowhere else in the world. Your guide will accompany you on a 1hr walk on well formed paths through the native forest to view the magnificent kauris, which are part of the ancient podocarp family established at the time Zelandia (NZ) split away from Gondawana Land 80 million years ago.
There will be a stop for lunch at an excellent café in the area and in the early afternoon your host will drive you to Waitangi where you will have a guided tour through the historically important Treaty House and Grounds and in the whare (meeting house) situated in the grounds, be entertained by the resident kapahaka group (Maori cultural performers) who will provide a special introduction to New Zealand’s unique indigenous Maori culture with a 30-40min performance of waiata (singing), poi, Māori weaponry, as well as the famous haka. After the performance you will have the opportunity to interact with the performers.
At the finish of the performance, after viewing the waka tua (war canoe), your host will drive you back to Waitangi.
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