Hawaiian Navigators Among the Māori

Hōkūleʻa arrives in Auckland Harbor for the first time. It had been 29 years since last sailed in the waters of Aotearoa. Photo by Kaipo Kīʻaha.
When Hōkūleʻa arrived in Auckland Harbor, it had been 29 years since she last sailed in the waters of Aotearoa. (Photo by Kaipo Kīʻaha)

By Captain and Pwo Navigator, Kālepa Baybayan

It’s 9 a.m. and most of the crew of Hōkūleʻa, our 62-foot, deep-sea Polynesian voyaging canoe on a multi-year journey around the world, is still asleep. It’s amazing how exhausting sea travel can be. The hours of standing watch break down your natural rhythm of work-sleep cycles. The past two weeks have been not just busy and tiring, but also very successful for us. It has all been worth the effort.

We just arrived into Wellington, Aotearoa (New Zealand) and the crew is comfortably settled in at the tertiary marae (meeting house) on the campus of Massey University.

Welcome to Wellington

We attended a powhiri (a welcome ceremony) from Māori at the whare waka (canoe house) on the Wellington Waterfront. Papa Tip and I spoke followed by a crew oli (chant) of Auē Ua Hiti Ē and Ia Waʻa Nui.

Our Wellington hosts are the most fantastic people; they’re very generous, kind, and giving. Simple things like doing laundry become tremendous chores while at sea since all non-essential washing is done with salt water —> Read More Here


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