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A call for Maori tourism in Mangere

A call for Maori tourism in Mangere

Auckland City Council is considering building a multimillion dollar Māori Tourism centre on the waterfront to attract tourism.

The basic problem is authenticity – Maori didn’t live in high tech waterfront buildings with electric lighting; they lived in well-established pa sites.

A Maori/Polynesian cultural centre is a fantastic idea but only 10 minutes’ drive from the International airport is an ancient Pa site on Mangere Mountain.

“Would it not be more logical to rebuild the Pa site on Mangere Mountain and show off Māori culture in its true form so tourists can walk around the site and experience this rich diverse culture?”

Most European tourists don’t come to New Zealand/Aotearoa to experience Europe recreated in the South Pacific with casinos and yachts - they come here in part at least to experience Polynesia and discover what the world was like prior to the age of European seafaring.

This tourist trap on Mangere Mountain could potentially change the economy of Mangere Bridge.

Mangere is the first place people from all over the world people first arrive in New Zealand so why not have free buses transporting them to the ancient Pa site of Mangere Mountain and afterwards encourage them to enjoy our cafes in Mangere Bridge. This would pour millions of dollars into the local economy and could employ many youth in and around the new development in roles such as providing Kapa Haka performances and acting as tourist guides and even staging mock battles of a Pa site invasion.

The CBD doesn’t have the Māori population to support such a centre but there is an entire Māori community in and around Mangere to support such a venture.

The role of the local board is to provide employment and create a tourism industry without Tangata Whenua participation at decision level there is a lack of enthusiasm for Maori tourism and history.

Such a venture could also encapsulate the Polynesian cultures from Tonga, Samoa, Niue and the Cook Islands with the main draw card being the medieval Pa site.

If elected this is one of the many new ideas myself and Mana will be bringing to the table at Auckland City Council.

ENDS

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