A collection of questions we get asked.
When you meet a Maori person in a Maori meeting place or at a formal function you might be greeted by a light touching of noses, one touch on each side. This is called a 'hongi'
You might also come across performances of the Maori "haka" a ritualized war dance and sometimes a spontaneous celebration of victory and joy that's designed to impress and sometimes intimidate opponents.
A haka precedes many sporting encounters and is also an expression of grief for the Maori people. As a result of inter-marriage there are no longer any pure blooded Maori in New Zealand, however many of their rituals and the ways they express strong emotional feelings are now used by the wider population.
If encountering any of these customs and rituals the appropriate response is to remain quiet and respectful.