Hinehopu's Tree. Rotorua District. New Zealand.
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Punga and Paua
S 38° 02.150 E 176° 30.170
60H E 456371 N 5790092
Quick Description: The historic Hinehopu’s Tree (also known as the Sacred Matai, or ‘wishing tree’ of Ngati Pikiao) is passed when travelling along Hongi's Track which links Lakes Rotoiti and Rotoehu in the Rotorua Lakes District.
Location: North Island, New Zealand
Date Posted: 4/19/2009 8:05:12 PM
Waymark Code: WM67X0
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Team Sieni
Views: 3

Long Description:
The tree is named after the Maori chieftainess, Hinehopu, who lived in the area around 1620. Hinehopu kept two homes, one at Rotoiti and the other at Rotoehu and often travelled between the two lakes. The track and area between the two lakes was named after her. The name Hongi was given to the area when the famous Ngapuhi warrior, Hongi, transferred his canoes from Lake Rotoehu to Lake Rotoiti in 1823 in order to perform a surprise raid on the Arawa people on Mokoia Island, Lake Rotorua.

Hinehopu’s Tree (also known as the Sacred Matai, or ‘wishing tree’ of Ngati Pikiao) is passed along this track and is also accessible from SH 30. According to the legend, a warring Maori tribe was making its way down the path (later known as Hinehopu's Trail) where a Maori princess and her baby (Hinehopu) were also travelling.

The princess hid herself and baby Hinehopu in the hollow base of the tree while the warriors passed by. The baby grew up to foster the first of the great tribes of that area, and all the lesser tribes came from it. Later she met her husband, Pikiao (II) under the tree. When they joined as husband and wife the tree became sacred to their union. The ceremony “Uru-uru-whenua” is performed by travellers passing the matai to ensure protection from evil spirits and fine weather for the remainder of their journey.

You can visit the Wishing Tree which stands by the side of the road. People place gifts of greenery or money or other things in the hollow trunk and are granted a wish. It is said that all wishes will come true.
Website: [Web Link]

Historic Event:
This tree has a significant part in early Maori History. Early in the 1600s, a baby named Hinehopu was hidden under a large mataī tree by her mother. In later years, Hinehopu met her future husband Pikiao beside the tree and the two became the founding ancestors of the Ngāti Pikiao tribe, in the Rotorua area. The tree still stands alongside Hinehopu’s track (now part of State Highway 30), which links Lake Rotoiti to Lake Rotoehu. It is known as the wishing tree or Hinehopu’s tree.


Year: 1600s

Species: Matai

Approximate Age: 400

Location: Lake Rotoiti near Rotorua.

Visit Instructions:
To log this waymark you must visit the site and post an original photo of the tree. Photos taken off the web, or from other sources are not acceptable.
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Recent Visits/Logs:
Date Logged Log User Rating  
taybee visited Hinehopu's Tree. Rotorua District. New Zealand. 1/7/2011 taybee visited it
Punga and Paua visited Hinehopu's Tree. Rotorua District. New Zealand. 4/18/2009 Punga and Paua visited it

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