Matariki ki Pōneke 2018 - English version

Nau mai, haere mai – your whole whānau are warmly invited to celebrate Matariki, the Māori New Year.

Girl reaching for the stars -

Matariki ki Pōneke 2018 will be celebrated with the following free public events during June and July 2018.

Woman in white from ReCut June 2017: Toni Huata  - photo: Stephen A'Court.

ReCut 5

Friday 15 June, 5.35pm
Postponement date: Saturday 16 June, 5.35pm

ReCut 5 will open our Matariki celebrations – a creative and uniquely Wellington flavoured public event. Bring friends and family along to Civic Square for the event start at 5.35pm sharp. This will be followed by the Hika Ahi event at Te Papa (see below). Learn more about ReCut here.

Promotional image for Ahi Ka.

Adrian Wagner & Horomona Horo. Photo: Mikel Taylor


Ahi Kā

Friday 29 June, 6pm–10pm
Postponement date: Saturday 30 June, 6pm–10pm

Come down to Odlins Plaza and the Whairepo Lagoon on Wellington's waterfront to experience our new event, Ahi Kā. Celebrate and learn about the Māori New Year with fire, food, friends and whānau. See some of the nation's finest Māori performers and storytellers, and experience a beautiful light parade featuring creative talent from local schools.

Hangi, toasted marshmallows, fire on the water, and a midwinter bonfire – there's something for everyone at this family-friendly event. 

For the list of times and performances on each stage, see: Ahi Kā Schedule

Matariki fireworks.

Wellington Sky Show

Saturday 14 July, 6.30pm–6.40pm
Postponement date: Sunday 15 July, 6.30pm

Rounding out our Matariki celebrations will be the Wellington Sky Show at the Wellington waterfront. This landmark event sees the Wellington harbour light up with a spectacular fireworks display.

Other Matariki events

There are other events happening around the city to join in the celebrations.

Matariki on Bond Street: Friday June 15, 12 noon – 2.30pm
Nau mai, join the celebrations for Matariki in your very own inner-city garden. The program for the day includes a welcome from mana whenua, free kai, fun activities for kids and their whānau, plus opportunities to learn and relax in the garden.

  • Mihi whakatau nā te iwi mana whenua – Welcome and learn about Te Ao Māori (the Māori world)
  • Whakarite – We will be preparing the garden for spring and summer! Plant a free “take away” garden
  • Ako – Learn about rongoā (Māori medicinal plants) and growing in small spaces
  • Kitea – Discover taonga (treasures) from your local library – books and story-time Tohatoha – Share free kai and kawakawa tea together
  • Auaha – Create your own Matariki star and mahi wahi (string games)
  • Whakatā – Relax on a bean bag!

This free event will be held at the community garden in Bond Street, Te Aro.

Hika Ahi– Matariki Community Ritual and Celebration: Friday 15 June, 7pm – 8.30pm
Nau mai! Haere mai! Come along and join in this family-friendly community ritual and celebration of people and place, conducted to mark the arrival of Matariki and the Māori New Year. This free event will be held at the Te Papa Outdoor Ampitheatre (Red Gates, to the left of the main entrance). The community ritual also begins Te Papa's series of events to celebrate Matariki. Find out more on Te Papa's website.

Matariki Harbour Challenge: Saturday 23 June
A waka ama event hosted by Hikoikoi Waka Ama Club. This year's event will showcase Māori culture and traditional knowledge, from voyaging to kai. This event will be on the water in Wellington's harbour and on the waterfront at Te Wharewaka o Pōneke. Find out more on Hikoikoi Waka Ama Club's website and Facebook.

Taikura Kapa Haka 2018: 23 and 24 June, 10am – 5pm
Formally known as Kaumātua Kapa Haka. Enjoy a celebration of haka and waiata at Te Papa, presented by senior Māori performing artists from around Aotearoa New Zealand. Find out more on Te Papa's website.

Event poster for OneOne Matariki event.


29 and 30 June 7pm–10pm

Immerse yourself in an award-winning AV/live dance installation by internationally recognised NZ arts laureate Daniel Belton and Good Arts Company. A spell binding experience to match the magic of Matariki. The performance will run over two nights at the eastern end of the Te Papa Promenade.

Video: ONEONE Matariki Ahi Kā (whakatere)

Video: ONEONE Matariki Ahi Kā (hari)