Tamaki Maori Village | Rotorua | Australia + New Zealand Trip Part 8

Please check out the previous parts of the trip if you haven’t read it yet!
Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4,Part 5,Part 6,Part 7

Date Location Hotel Activities
11/19 Sydney Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour Sydney Opera House, Coogee Beach, Sydney Fish Market
11/20 Auckland Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour Wine Tour, Muriwai Gannet Colony
11/21 Queenstown Rees Hotel and Luxury Apartments Skyline Gondola, Lunch @ Stratosfare Restaurant, the head of Lake Wakatipu
11/22 Queenstown Rees Hotel and Luxury Apartments Shotover Jet, Whitewater rafting @ Shotover River
11/23 Dunedin/Oamaru Bluestone On George Kawarau Bridge, Oamaru Blue Penguin Colony
11/24 Queenstown Villa del Lago Lake Tekapo, Lake Pukaki, Lake Wanaka
11/25 Rotorua Sport of Kings Motel Hobbiton, Tamaki Maori Village
11/26 Auckland Te Puia, Waikite Valley Thermal Pools

we did the Tamaki Maori Village Rotorua Maori Hangi Dinner and Performance. Maori people were the first people who inhabited New Zealand and make up a significant portion of the population today.

a bus picked us up from our hotel and the driver picked up a bunch of people along the way until the bus was full. after we arrived to the ‘village’, there were 6-8 more buses there. it was super crowded.

the Maori warriors gave an opening dance, then we walked into the village and spent about 5-10 mins visiting a series of small cottages. at each cottage, the warrior will demonstrate something that represents the maori culture.

after the demonstration, we walked to another area where they explained how the food was cooked in the ground using thermal rocks. i was pretty disappointed that i didnt get to see how the food was actually cooked. all the cooking was the done by the time they showed us and it was the food we were about to eat that night.

onto the next building, they did more singing and dancing and the dinner followed. food was served buffet style in a cafeteria. food was nothing special and pretty bland. best thing i had was the baked potatoes.

i was pretty disappointed because everything felt pretty fake. i thought it was going to be a real maori village, but everything was jus a setup and the warriors were all actors/actresses. it was way too crowded and too expensive ($90 per person) for what it was. it felt more like a tourist circus rather than a raw Maori experience as I hoped. I wouldn’t recommend it.

Follow me


La La: Software Engineer, Freelance Photographer, born in Beijing, raised in Boston, MA and now resides in Los Angeles California.
Follow me