Polynesian Navigation and the Discovery of New Zealand
- About the Book
The Polynesian navigator Kupe is credited with the discovery of the land his expedition named Aotearoa, land of the long white cloud. How did he and the many canoes that followed find their way to New Zealand without modern navigational techniques through perilous seas in wooden canoes?
By examining myth, star charts and contemporary Polynesian seafaring, Jeff Evans traces the methods by which the early explorers made their epic voyages in Part One. The book’s second part travels with Maori canoe expert Matahi Brightwell and navigator Frances Cowan aboard the traditional canoe Hawaiki-nui following traditional navigation—with no modern aids—on its historic voyage from Tahiti down to New Zealand.
Richly illustrated with photos, maps and drawings, this is an essential guide to one of the world’s great stories of discovery.
- About the Author(s)
Jeff Evans, AuthorJeff Evans is a writer and photographer based in Auckland. He has written several books relating to waka, including Ngā Waka o Neherā, Polynesian Navigation and the Discovery of New Zealand and Waka Taua: The Maori War Canoe. Between them, these books recall Māori migration traditions, describe navigation skills used by Māori to voyage between the islands in the central Pacific and New Zealand, and introduce the reader to waka taua. Jeff’s most recent book was Heke-nukumai-nga-iwi Busby: Not Here by Chance (Huia, 2015). In 2020 he was awarded a summer residency at the Michael King Writer’s Centre to work on this book.
- Supporting Resources