Map: Based on the iwi (tribe) map from “Atlas of New Zealand Boundaries” by Jan Kelly and Brian Marshall, 1996, Auckland University Press.
The Story of Kupe:
Although Maui fished up the North and South Islands, it was the great Polynesian navigator Kupe who discovered them. Kupe lived in Hawaiiki, mythical ancestral homeland of the Maori. In Hawaiiki lived a canoe maker by the name of Toto.
Toto fabricated two huge ocean going canoes from a large tree. Toto gave canoes to his dauthers Rongorongo and Kura. Kupe desired Kura who was his cousin Hoturapa’s wife.
Kupe tricked Hoturapa into diving while fishing and let him drown as a plan to take Kura. His family was suspicious of the circumstances surrounding the death. Kupe and his own family left Hawaiiki in Kura’s canoe Matahorua. During their subsequent journeys, they overcame numerous monsters and sea demons, including the great octopus named as Te Wheke-a-Muturangi, and discovered New Zealand.
He gave instructions on how to return to this new land, but said that he himself would not be returning.