Topic: Tangaroa (statue)
This article is about Tangaroa, God of the Ocean, a statue that stands at the entrance to Tauranga harbour.
- Tangaroa is the God of the seas and oceans according to Maori tradition.
- This name was given to the bronze statue, which stands at the harbour entrance. Tangaroa is performing the wero, or challenge, to those entering the harbour.
- The statue was commissioned by Mayor Bob (later Sir Robert) Owens in 1976 to commemorate the centenary of the Port of Tauranga.
- At first the gift was not fully accepted by local iwi because in their view the concept was not used correctly, as the statue was not positioned to challenge incoming vessels.
- In 2007 the statue was turned around to face ships entering the harbour. This had the full support of local kaumatua who took part in blessing the statue.