One of the canoes in which the ancestors of the Māori people came from Hawaiki to New Zealand. Differing legends give the name of the chief as Rua-whārō, and as Tamatea; Huatahi and Nukuroa. Rongokako and Tamatea-pokai-whenua, the father of Kahu-ngunu, were also on board. With them they brought the god Kāhukura, whose guardians had been killed by Rua-whārō. The canoe was turned into stone, and now lies at Murihiku. The people on board were very short of food on the voyage, and had to eat their children. They landed at Tauranga.

One tradition states that the chief was Uenga-pua-ariki, the ancestor of Ngāti-ruanui, and that they landed at Ohiwa; Hine-kau-i-rangi being a very sacred lady on board. In this canoe came ancestors of Ngāti-kahungunu and Ngaitahu.

It is also called Horouta (or Horouta) on account of its swiftness (horo).



  • Tregear, Edward. (1891). Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary. Wellington: Government Printer, p. 21.
  • White, John. (1887). Ancient History of the Maori. 6 vols. Wellington: G. Didsbury, Government Printer, pp. 2:177, 179, 183; 3:42, 72.

This article incorporates text from Maori-Polynesian Comparative Dictionary (1891) by Edward Tregear, which is in the public domain.