Guided tours of New Zealand by our family
We share our knowledge with our own people as well as visitors. Every guided tour of New Zealand's Hawke's Bay region is a unique experience, an opportunity for you to gain an understanding of our people, and for us to learn about you. We’ll take you on an emotional journey of discovery through Hakikino, Te Mata Peak, and the greater Heretaunga area. Together, we’ll bring Maori history to life for you.
Robert Mac Donald
Robert is our story teller. He keeps the tales of our ancestors alive orally, as a published author and our social media man. He posts to our facebook page and also writes the stories on our website. He had the vision and fortitude to get all of this started, and is a Director of Waimarama Maori Tours.
Adele comes with a vast background and knowledge in Human Resources and Retail. She can often be found trawling through shops and meeting with local artisans to ensure that Hakikino always has the best products to offer our visitors. As well as managing our shop, Adele loves to spend time sharing stories of our culture and Hakikino with our visitors and is often found down by the eels. She has a beautiful singing voice and is an amazing cook!
Ike is our Office Manager ensuring the waka (canoe) doesn't capsize and allowing everybody to do what they do best! Although he spends a lot of his time on the computer he relishes any opportunity he gets to spend time with our visitors and share our culture. He has returned home to Waimarama after being raised on a farm in Southland. He is the great-nephew of Robert MacDonald and grandson of Ira and Russell Deans.
Donna is always ready with a smile and a hug. Donna is a fabulous mother and grandmother. She is a cultural advisor to the teachers at Hastings Girls High School. She also runs a programme on cultural awareness for various employers. She shares the love of her culture with our visitors at Hakikino.
'Aunty Helen' or 'Mrs. B', as she is affectionately known in the community is a kaumatua, an elder who lives here in Waimarama. Helen is always ready to greet our visitors with a smile and a song or two. She thoroughly enjoys sharing her love for our culture with the world!
Tyla Te Whaiti
Tyla has been greeting our visitors to Hakikino almost since we began. He is now one of our more experienced family members, and one of the cheekier ones, too. He loves to get visitors views of their time with us on video, as his alter ego "the video warrior".
Denise is our ‘camp mother’. She is a super hostess and provides timely advice and direction when it is required. She was a Director of Waimarama Maori Tours, and has recently retired - which she well deserves! She is also a very much loved Mum and Nan, and has an uncanny way of pulling people together at a moments notice for all kinds of working bees. She can still keep us in line, and we all know that if she asks something of us, it must be important.
Ira is a kaumatua, an elder and a sister to Robert. She has been involved with Hakikino in some capacity for a number of years. Ira moved to Southland at a young age where she raised her family and now as a semi-retired school teacher, she and her husband Russell return to Waimarama for most of their summer holidays. She loves spending time at Hakikino sharing her knowdge and culture. Ira is Ike's grandmother.
Russell is a kaumatua, an elder, and married to Ira (Robert's sister). He has spent many years supporting Hakikino and returns every summer with his wife, Ira to Waimarama. Russell along with Ira are always busy supporting their mokopuna (grandchildren) and can often be found on the side-lines of a rugby match. He loves spending time at Hakikino and always ensures that our visitors are well looked after. Russell and Ira are our 'time-keepers' and always ensure that our visitors are never late back to port! He is Ike's grandfather.
The Hokianga Family - Alayna, Thompson and their 4 children - are a busy family! They each have their own traditional skills and talents. Alayna and Thompson run the Te Aka Charitable Trust in Flaxmere - and they provide after school cultural programmes for children in Flaxmere. You can see more about the Trust on their facebook page
Alayna specialises in cultural song and dance. She has a ta moko, the traditional tattoo worn by Maori women, which tells the story of her life and strength. Her husband Thompson was the tattoo artist. Alayna is very involved in her community in Flaxmere.
Thompson is a carver, tattooist, musician and our resident expert in traditional Maori musical instruments. Thompson is a strong believer in fitness and healthy living.
Tū-Matangaro, Tamaiawhitia, Waerea, and Manukatea Hokianga
Tū-Matangaro, Tamaiawhitia, Waerea and Manukatea all join in on tours when they aren't at school. Tu-Matangaro helps Tyla with the Mau Rakau demonstration, Tamaiawhitia helps his father Thompson with the Puoro demonstration, and Waerea and Manukatea help their Mum Alayna with the Poi demonstration. Alayna and Thompson have had another beautiful child, there 5th, a gorgeous boy who's picture will come soon.
Glenn Mac Donald
Glenn lives at the kaumatua flats at the Marae in Waimarama. He is a brother to Robert. He has been helping out in lots of ways for years. His organisational skills ensure that our visitors are never late back at the port.
Jacob is a ‘hunter gatherer’ and lives with his family at Waimarama. He loves to be out collecting food for his whanau (family) and prior to Jacob moving on, he would share his knowledge of the outdoors with us at Hakikino.
Daphne is a kaumatua, an elder, and lives in Waimarama. Daphne’s sweet voice can be heard often at Hakikino when she is welcoming guests or singing the songs of Hakikino. Daphne is involved in the Marae at Waimarama.
Michelle has lived in Waimarama with her husband and children for over 18 years. She was with us at the beginning of the Hakikino Project working in the shop and has returned in the past to assits us in sharing our culture. Michelle has begun another journey in her life, however, she is still a part of our Hakikino whanau (family) and continues to enjoy the coastal paradise of Waimarama.
Davis Te Whaiti
Sadly in 2017 we lost Davis who was a kaumatua, an elder. He had returned home to live in Waimarama after many years of working and raising a family in Hastings. Hakikino truly benefited from his experience and steady hand.