Nā Waka: A tribe returning home
In October of 2014 Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia departed American Sāmoa for Aotearoa (New Zealand). Crewmembers aboard Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia sailed through Vavaʻu Island group in the Kingdom of Tonga, then past the Kermadec Islands before reaching Aotearoa.
Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia crewmembers, which also include two Maori voyagers from Aotearoa, had sailed for approximately 1,500 nautical miles through the Pacific before reaching their destination. These crewmembers are part of the journey that returns Hōkūleʻa to Aotearoa for the first time since 1985. Hikianalia was built in Aotearoa in 2012.
Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia arrived in Aotearoa and were celebrated in Waitangi on November 15, 2014. Crewmembers’ arrival to the region commemorates nearly thirty years since Hōkūleʻa first voyaged to Waitangi, Aotearoa. There, Māori elders have shared that the genealogy of all Māori in Aotearoa is traced back to five canoes. Upon Hōkūleʻa’s arrival in 1985, they recognized her as the sixth canoe carrying the sixth tribe, thus, the theme of the Sāmoa-New Zealand voyage of 2014 is Nā Waka: A tribe returning home.