A shopping trip into Rotorus today and some souvenir and personal shopping. This evening we had arranged to go to Te Puia or Te Po depending on which trip you take. It's a chance to get to see some sacred Maori land, a replica village, some traditional Maori entertainment, have a hangi (traditional Maori feast) and best of all view the geysers, see some kiwis and hear some of the Maori legends. I don't know if it is the fact I was brought up on my father's family stories means I have a huge interest in listening to stories or what it is but I loved hearing the myths and legends. Although it was an evening set up for tourists it wasn't too touristy. I wanted to learn the haka but it is very much a male thing but I did get up on stage and attempt to learn how to poi dance. The results can be seen on video. The Maori men are fine figures of maledom :D and that's all that needs to be said on the subject.
After walking around the village and seeing the geysers, we went to the kiwi house. I really hoped to see a kiwi whilst we were here but seeing them in the wild is very difficult. The kiwi is sacred to the Maori because they were the only bird who agreed to stay on the ground and protect the trees from the worms and insects. They are nocturnal birds and so the house is pitch black and it was extremely difficult to see them. The female did come out briefly and they are so beautiful, although Var begs to differ, and so much larger than you think they are going to be.
The hangi was superb. More food than you could possible eat and an amazing amount of choice. After we had fed ourselves we went out and were taken back to the geysers which were lit up at night and given hot chocolate whilst the guide sang a traditional Maori song of farewell to us. A fantastic night.