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The Street names of Rotorua

Ngāti Whakaue, Te Arawa


Arawa Street:  

Arawa Street is thought to be named after the Arawa waka but is also said to have been a tribute from Judge Fenton (who had charge of the layout of the new town) to the Arawa people.


Rangiuru Street:

Rangiuru was the wife of Whakaue and the mother of Tūtānekai, whose father was said to be Tūwharetoa from the Kawerau district.


Whakaue Street:

Whakaue was the son of Uenukukōpako. His wife was Rangiuru, mother of Tūtānekai.

It was Tūtānekai who raised his people to become the tribal force known as Ngāti Whakaue.


Pūkākī Street:

The great grandson of Tūtānekai, Pūkākī is remembered as a leader of great ancestral importance in Rotorua.  A fine carving of Pūkākī once stood as a gateway into the Pukeroa Pā. This carving is on display in the Rotorua Museum, Te Whare Taonga o Te Arawa. (Click here for more kōrero about Pūkāki).


Amohia Street:

Amohia was the fictitious heroine of a 488 page poem by Alfred Domett (New Zealand Prime Minister 1862 -3) called Ranolf and Amohia: A South Sea day-dream.

Her lover was an English sailor named Ranolf.


Haupapa Street:

A chief of Ngāti Whakaue, Rotohiko Haupapa, was elected as their first representative on the Town Board, and served from 1883 until his death in 1887.


Pukuatua Street:

There were two prominent men named Te Pukuatua in Rotorua when it was first established, the half-brothers Henare and Petera. Henare had served with Captain Gilbert Mair’s ‘Flying Column’ and presented the Te Arawa challenge to the Duke of Edinburgh at Ōhinemutu in 1870. The street however is most probably named after Petera Tukino Te Pukuatua, one of the chief Ngāti Whakaue negotiators and a signatory of the Rotorua township agreement on 26 November 1880.


Hinemoa Street:

Hinemoa is well known for swimming from the beach near the rock Iriirikapua at Ōwhata to her lover Tūtānekai on Mokoia Island, drawn by the sound of his flute. Her father was Umukaria and her mother Hinemaru.


Tūtānekai Street:

Tūtānekai, whose home was on Mokoia Island, was a warrior involved in many skirmishes, though it is for harmony that he is now best remembered. It was his flute-playing that led Hinemoa on her epic swim to Mokoia Island.


Eruera Street:

It is likely that the street is named after Eruera (Edward) Te Uremutu, prominent in Te Arawa claims in the 1870’s – 1880’s.


Amohau Street:

Te Amohau, was one of those chiefs approached by the Kingitanga movement of Tainui to stand as ‘Te Kīngi Māori.’ Te Amohau turned down the offer and suggested the Tūwharetoa leader Te Heuheu instead.


Hinemaru Street:

Hinemaru was the mother of the beautiful maiden Hinemoa. There was also a waiariki (thermal pool) and popular bathing pool within the Sulphur Bay area named Hinemaru.


Pererika Street:

Pererika Ngahuruhuru, a chief who was Chairman of the Great Committee (Te Kōmiti nui o Ngāti Whakaue) served as a trustee for the township’s first cemetery and was active in promoting Rotorua’s regatta.

Qualities: innovation, relationships, identity

Did you know?

You can search for (and add your own) photos of businesses, events, art and people connected to Rotorua streets on Kete Rotorua, a community digital library run by Rotorua Library: 

More to read:

On the creation of Rotorua township:

The Founding Years in Rotorua: a history of events to 1900, D M Stafford, 1980

This entry is related to these other entries:


Fenton Agreement; Hinemoa, Tūtānekai, Pukaki



Te Taumata o Ngāti Whakaue Iho Ake Trsut - Te Rangihakahaka Wānanga Workbook.

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