Tours and Tickets

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour provided by Footprints Waipoua

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour
5
Book in advance
from
$107.70
per adult
Reserve now & pay later: Save your spot free of charge with flexible booking.
100% of travellers recommend this experience
This number is based on the percentage of all Tripadvisor reviews for this product that have a bubble rating of 4 or higher
Free cancellation
Not sure? You can cancel this booking up to 24 hours in advance for a full refund.
Tour snapshot
Duration:
4h
Hotel pickup offered
Group size:
25
Ticket type:
Mobile
Free cancellation
  • Duration:
    4h
  • Hotel pickup offered
  • Group size:
    25
  • Ticket type:
    Mobile
  • Free cancellation
About
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
Available languages
English
What to expect
Know before you go
  • Duration: 4h
  • Mobile tickets accepted
  • Instant confirmation
Available languages
English
Cancellation policy
  • For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience.
What to expect
Need help booking?
Call the number below and use the product code: 26773P1
Important information
Inclusions
  • Local guide
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off within the Opononi/Omapere area
  • Local taxes
  • Use of a torch.
  • Access to insect repellant but we encourage you to bring your own eliminating potential reactions.
Exclusions
  • Food and drinks
  • Gratuities
Duration
4h
Departure details
  • Traveller pickup is offered.
  • We conduct a free pick-up and drop-off service from other accommodation providers located in the Omapere and Opononi townships. Pick ups from outside of these areas may be possible but include a charge. Please enquire/check at the time of booking.
  • The Heads Hokianga, State Highway 12 Omapere, Hokianga 0444, New Zealand This is located next to the GAS Omapere Service Station.
  • Hotel pickup is offered. View the hotel list on our checkout page to see if yours is included among the pickup points.
Additional information
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not recommended for travellers with back problems
  • A minimum of 4 people per tour is required to operate.
  • Free pick ups are conducted within the townships of Omapere and Opononi. Pickups start from 30 minutes before the tour departs. Enquire to see if pickups outside these areas are possible.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Not recommended for pregnant travellers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Not recommended for children under 5 years of age.
  • Most travellers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s cancelled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travellers. If it’s cancelled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 25 travellers
Inclusions
  • Local guide
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off within the Opononi/Omapere area
  • Local taxes
  • Use of a torch.
  • Access to insect repellant but we encourage you to bring your own eliminating potential reactions.
Exclusions
  • Food and drinks
  • Gratuities
Departure details
  • Traveller pickup is offered.
  • We conduct a free pick-up and drop-off service from other accommodation providers located in the Omapere and Opononi townships. Pick ups from outside of these areas may be possible but include a charge. Please enquire/check at the time of booking.
  • The Heads Hokianga, State Highway 12 Omapere, Hokianga 0444, New Zealand This is located next to the GAS Omapere Service Station.
  • Hotel pickup is offered. View the hotel list on our checkout page to see if yours is included among the pickup points.
Duration
4h
Return details
  • Returns to original departure point
Additional information
  • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
  • Not recommended for travellers with back problems
  • A minimum of 4 people per tour is required to operate.
  • Free pick ups are conducted within the townships of Omapere and Opononi. Pickups start from 30 minutes before the tour departs. Enquire to see if pickups outside these areas are possible.
  • Not wheelchair accessible
  • Not recommended for pregnant travellers
  • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
  • Not recommended for children under 5 years of age.
  • Most travellers can participate
  • This experience requires good weather. If it’s cancelled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund
  • This experience requires a minimum number of travellers. If it’s cancelled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund
  • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 25 travellers
Itinerary
  • You'll start at
    The Heads Hokianga
    Or, you can also get picked up
    See Important Information for details
  • 1
    Waipoua Forest
    Stop: 30 minutes
    Setting out from Omapere by coach, the 20 minute journey is the perfect opportunity for your local Māori guide to connect you with your fellow passengers and brief you on the protocols for your visit to the largest remaining stand of kauri in New Zealand, the mighty Waipoua Forest. Before stepping into the domain of Tāne Mahuta (the god of the forest) your guide will conduct a brief karakia (prayer) ensuring that the evening is both enjoyable and safe. On the gentle paths that slowly wind their way through this ancient theatre you will come face to face with giant kauri trees that superseded both the arrival of Kupe, NZ’s first discoverer a thousand years earlier and the birth of Jesus Christ. Experience the affinity that Māori have with the forest and the deep spiritual respect they have for these sentinels who have stood silently witnessing the passing of time. Your guide will share thought-provoking information, humorous banter, stories and legends before respectfully greeting the oldest and largest known kauri trees in the world with spine-tingling chants and song. Witness the day transition to night and by default let your senses become hauntingly enhanced. You will learn how Māori used plants for medicinal purposes and the life-cycle of a giant. The seed to mature tree journey is a curious process of luck and tenacity. As the sun sets the nocturnal creatures begin to go about their work. Should the gods look favourably down upon us you may encounter insects like weta, our two nocturnal birds (the kiwi and the native owl) or the magnificent but slightly chilling giant carnivorous 'kauri' snail. Deep in the forest waits the stately Te Matua Ngāhere - 'The Father of the Forest', who at 3,000 years is the oldest giant; Your guide will greet this primordial presence like an old friend and before leaving you will enjoy a few moments of silence to reflect Your tour will conclude with a visit to a national icon and the largest giant, Tāne Mahuta. A short stroll later and in keeping with the evening’s theme your guide will formally acknowledge the Lord of the Forest. Suddenly you stand dwarfed before a 2000 year old silhouette; his ancient limbs seem to grasp at the blanket of stars. Sit or stand in admiration as your guide shares the Māori creation story. Final words and song are offered before the curtain is drawn on an experience of a lifetime and you are ushered back to your accommodation in the Hokianga. Just like these giant kauri trees the memories you seize are timeless treasures.
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  • You'll return to the starting point
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

5.0
98 reviews
Excellent
95
Very good
3
Average
0
Poor
0
Terrible
0

mei_soo
Auckland Central, New Zealand68 contributions
Jul 2021
We had the amazing Merepaea as our guide. It was an educational and deeply moving evening. Lots of important stories and songs were shared - my husband and I felt very connected to the forest and felt a renewed sense of hope afterwards. As we approached the trees with Merepaea's enchanting voice echoing amongst the trees I could not help but be moved to tears. We were just in awe by the respect and love shown to the forest. Starting the tour early to enjoy the kauri trees then seeing the light change as we stood in front of Tane Mahuta was very special. We had a huge downpour but had brollies ready - it actually made for a much more atmospheric experience.

Thank you Merepaea and the team at Footprints for everything you're doing. We hope Tane Mahuta and the rest of the kauri forest will continue to live and thrive even after we're long gone. I cannot recommend this tour highly enough. It is a must do for everyone visiting the kauri coast.
Written 30 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Salsera1040
Melbourne, Australia89 contributions
May 2021 • Couples
We had a magical evening with Merepaea learning about the mighty Kauri. She was very friendly and informative. We have been spreading the word about the historical decimation of the trees & the danger of the fungus.Listening to her chants, singing and legends made for a very special time. Merepaea generously gave me cream and healing leaves for my shoulder injury.
Written 24 May 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

schubertsonja
3 contributions
Mar 2020 • Family
We were with three kids on the guided tour, Charlie (hope I spell your name right mate) was just fabulous in telling and sharing the history and stories, giving us the time needed to translate to the kids, so they got it,too. Really loved the way of introducing to the Maóri culture and perform the prayers and incantations, hearing your beautiful voice in the Forest. Thanks for sharing! Absolutely highly recommended tour! Thank you for a lovely
evening! That was amazing!
Written 6 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Scott S
North Island, New Zealand184 contributions
Apr 2021
A wonderful, informative, and meaningful journey among some of the world's most ancient and important trees.
Our small group spent an evening exploring the incredible kauri trees, with our amazing host Merepaea.
Merepaea was the perfect blend of facts and science (and preservation) about the trees, but also a fantastic storyteller: sharing the history and myth of the trees and the creatures of the forest. The manaakitanga (hospitality) she showed to all of us was exceptional - the perfect guide for these trees.
The walk in the darkening woods, seeing some of the forest only by torch light, listening to the sounds of the night forest (we several times heard wild Kiwi calls, both male and female) gave the outing its own special style.
At the end of the tour, to make sure the experience hit ALL our senses, Merepaea served us delicious hot tea made from local plants and manuka honey, which we sipped while gazing up at the full brilliance of the Milky Way in this dark sky part of the world.
Truly a wonderful experience
Written 8 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Peter F
Wellington, New Zealand35 contributions
Feb 2020
This is a great experience. Our guide was Charlie and he was great, a mine of information. The actual experience is really cool, I don't want to give it away but let's just say Charlie has a fine singing / chanting voice. I'm from New Zealand and I learned a lot, I was so interested by what Charlie had to say about Kupe that I purchased a book about the local stories about Kupe. I really recommend this. Torches are issued so you don't need to be worried about seeing the track, which in any case is quite smooth.
Written 28 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Fickle
1 contribution
Wow! Just Wow! It was absolutely incredible! Merepaea is the most beautiful wahine and is so passionate about what she does. Her knowledge and aroha pores out of her which makes the whole experience even more magical. Miss 12 enjoyed it so much she even sketched Tane Mahuta instead of taking a photo with her phone.
Written 18 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Lidija M
2 contributions
Dec 2019
Waipoua Forest is already a special, enchanted, place, but with Charlie as a guide you will get an insight that stretches beyond an ancient forest and a giant kauri trees.

Charlie brings together the legends and the facts, the past and the present, creating an even more profound understanding that the nature is a leaving thing, just like you and me and need to be treated according to that (like the Whanganui river granted same legal rights as human being).

Trees are no longer a trees when you stand in front of Te Matua Ngāhere and Tāne Mahuta and learn how kauri trees families function.

This tour with Charlie is like an environmental lesson and I will always remember his saying on how everything in life matters: “The small things, the big things, the great things, all working together, all depending on each other.”
Thank you Charlie.
Written 23 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

MauiEva
Makawao, Hawaii52 contributions
Feb 2020
My husband and I had been recommended to visit the ancient Kaouri trees in Waipoua. The twilight guided walk to visit Tane Mahouta, 2000 years old, (The Lord of the Forest) and Te Matua Ngahere, 3500 years old, (the Father of the Forest) was a most profound and spiritual experience. We were met and guided by a beautiful Maori woman, Merepaea, who told us stories, reminded us of our responsibility to the environment for the generations to come and tuned us into the spiritual power of the trees as she chanted to them as we approached these ancient living beings. I stood in awe with tears streaming down my face to realize that they have stood there slowly growing when Buddha and Moses and Christ and Mohammed walked the earth. This experience shall live in my heart for all my days. Mahalo nui loa.
Written 21 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Expedition613278
5 contributions
Apr 2021
We travelled from Paihia to the Hokianga especially to do this tour and it did not disappoint. Merepaea, our guide for the evening, was knowledgeable and engaging. She shared waiata, maori culture and a great ecological message with us as we visited Te Matua Ngahere and Tane Mahuta. Our children aged 11, 13 and 14 really enjoyed the experience as did my husband and I. We highly recommend this tour and Merepaea our guide.
Written 28 April 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Alistair450
Auckland Central, New Zealand135 contributions
Oct 2020
Footprints Waipoua is run by local Maori who have the right to access the forest for twilight/night tours to tell the story and cultural significance of this Kauri forest and two of its giants. You are a picked up from the Omapere Copthorne in a van and driven to the forest a few kilometres away. At each entry to and exit from the forest you need to clean your footwear to prevent the spread of an organism that threatens the health of the Kauri trees.

Merepaea was an excellent guide describing the life of the forest and its importance to Maori through explanation, legends, stories, chants and humour. A pleasant easy walk takes you to the oldest tree, Te Matua Ngahere, and this is followed by a visit in the falling darkness to Tane Mahuta, the largest. This trip is a magical experience enhanced by the sounds of kiwi calling and an encounter with a ruru (owl) that was chasing moths stirred up by our presence. It gave our small group a real sense of the spiritual significance of the forest for Maori.

This tour is excellent value and not to be missed. For New Zealanders who have visited in the daytime this is a new and special experience and the same will be true for international tourists when they are once more able to visit Aotearoa/NZ.

At the time of this tour, New Zealand was at level one with no community cases and masks were not a requirement.
Written 4 November 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Showing results 1-10 of 85
About the operator

Don’t take it from us – here’s what people have to say about this operator.

By: Footprints Waipoua
NiamhR93
NiamhR93
00
MUST DO IN OPONONI
AMAZING!!! Incredible experience so special and the staff and just so so good!!! If you are in the Hokianga you hav
Lee-Anne D
Lee-Anne D
00
Fantastic visit
Highly recommend visiting. Great exhibits - photos, video and narration - followed by an informative and expert wal
HoneHekeLodge
HoneHekeLodge
00
Not to be missed
What a special day. Thank you for sharing your stories. It was a truly magical day even with a little rain as if on
Kerry P
Kerry P
00
Not just a walk in the forest
A walk with a guide like Billy Boy brings another dimension to the wonders around you. Stories, sing and soulful mu
collchien
collchien
00
Amazing guides!
It was an amazing experience to join the forest in the evening and get out in the dark. The quietness and the singi
Hermann M
Hermann M
00
Kauri Walks with An Expert
We had already stopped by at Waipoua Forest on our way to Omapere and I wondered whether it would really be worthwh
170dennisl
170dennisl
00
Fabulous experience, don’t miss it!
Took this tour this morning from our hotel in Hokianga. We were met by our guides Meri and Brook and taken on a per
Lighty69
Lighty69
00
Fantastic
The tour, led by Charlie was magical, informative and spiritual. Learnt so much about conservation, Mauro culture a
shrink_10
shrink_10
00
Twilight tour with Footprints
We loved this tour company. They were great leaders into the Waipoua Forest. we took the twilight tour and felt ver
Secureordure
Secureordure
00
The forest brought to life
The Kauri trees are a treasure. However it is very difficult to understand a 3000 year old living part of the fores
Robert S
Robert S
00
Outstanding
We happen to catch the guide at the big tree with his group and he spoke to everyone. He was won of the best guides
Parsnip62
Parsnip62
00
True magic still exists
Thank you, Footprints. Thank you Ian for a lovely drive. Thank you Billy boy for making the experience of seeing th
Alan C
Alan C
00
Footprints Waipoua
We did the twilight tour. No other guests, just the two of us. Charlie is an excellent and entertaining guide and w
Eli B
Eli B
00
Exceptional spiritual experience of the botanic kind.
Our guide had the knowledge, passion and love of nature to impart stories of the forest and ethos of the peoples th
Maria A
Maria A
00
Fun in the forest at night!
Had a great time on the twilight tour - the Maori chanting by our guide as we walked to see the two giant trees in
Frequently Asked Questions about Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour will start at 5:00 PM. Discover and book Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour on Tripadvisor

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour price starts from $109.14. Discover and book Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour on Tripadvisor

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour cancellation policy: For a full refund, cancel at least 24 hours in advance of the start date of the experience. Discover and book Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour on Tripadvisor

Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour is hosted by Footprints Waipoua. Read reviews, discover additonal experiences or contact Footprints Waipoua on Tripadvisor. Discover and book Waipoua Forest: Twilight Encounter - Maori Cultural Eco Night Tour on Tripadvisor