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HTO Welcomes the Hokulea and Hikianalia to New Zealand
Last month, the Hawaii Tourism Oceania (HTO) welcomed the Hokulea and Hikianalia to Waitangi, New Zealand, one of the first stops of their Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage, which commenced in 2013. The powhiri, a Maori welcome ceremony, included speeches and performances by local Maori Kapa Haka groups and entertainers from Kamehameha Schools.
“The arrival of the Hokulea and Hikianalia has been a much anticipated event in New Zealand,” said Darragh Walshe, New Zealand country manager from Hawaii Tourism Oceania. “We are looking forward to their tour throughout the country through next April, and working together to further enhance the cultural connection between New Zealand and Hawaii.”
During their stay in New Zealand, the Hokulea and Hikianalia will be based in the New Zealand Maritime Museum. HTO is working with its local partners, the Polynesian Voyaging Society and the U.S. Consulate to identify cultural, educational and other opportunities to promote the historical ties and traditions of Hawaii.
“Navigating by the stars is a deep-rooted tradition that dates back more than 600 years, when the first Polynesians arrived in the Hawaiian Islands,” said Kelii Wilson, director of Hawaiian Cultural Affairs. “It is a legacy that was almost lost, but experienced a revival in the 1970s with the construction and voyage of the storied Hokulea canoe, which has since helped to nurture global relationships and share the value of sustainability.”
Covering 47,000 nautical miles, 85 ports and 26 countries over five years, the Hokulea and Hikianalia’s worldwide voyage will serve to promote the importance of caring for the earth, or Malama Honua, while connecting people from different backgrounds and professions, around the world.
The HTA is proud to sponsor of the Malama Honua Worldwide Voyage and its mission to perpetuate and share the Hawaiian tradition of navigation and the values of sustainability and aloha with those from around the world.