Distant Journeys

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A colour picture of a tattooed Maori man

Would you like to learn the Maori language?

Would you like to learn the Maori language?

Although English is the predominant language of New Zealand, the Maori language is the country’s native language. If you have the opportunity to bump in to a Kiwi whilst participating in one of our wonderful New Zealand holidays, then you may get to experience this brilliant dialect.

The Maori language consists of a logical structure, with emphasis being on the pronunciation of words. The language consists of five vowel sounds: a e i o u (‘a’ as in ‘car’, ‘e’ as in ‘egg’, ‘i’ like the ‘ee’ in ‘tee’, ‘u’ like an ‘o’ in ‘to’). There are also eight consonants in the Maori dialect, which are similar to those in the English language: ‘h’, ‘k’, ‘m’, ‘n’, ‘p’, ‘r’,’t’, and ‘w’.  However, there are also two different consonants: ‘wh’ (pronounced in the same way as our ‘f’) and ‘ng’ (sounding the same in English)

As Maoris are known for being super friendly, one of the friendliest tribes in the world in fact, here are a few phrases to get you chatting:

Kia ora – Hello
Kia ora tatou – Hello everyone
Tena koe – Greetings to you (said to one person)
Tena koutou – Greeting to you all
Haere mai – Welcome
Nau mai – Welcome
Kei te pehea koe? – How’s it going?
Kei te pai – Good
Tino pai – Really good
Haere ra – Farewell
Ka kite ano – Until I see you again (Bye)
Hei konei ra – See you later

Image: Graham Crumb available via Creative Commons

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  • The organisation and communication were first class. The flexibility in travelling to the destination was impressive and the hotels where we stayed  in were all of a good standard. Our Coach was driven by Ken, who was a character and nothing was too much for him.

    Mr & Mrs Hall, Magnificent New Zealand
  • We both enjoyed the Magnificent New Zealand holiday immensely. The Coach Driver/Tour Guide was excellent and the hotels were really comfortable. The holiday was extremely good value and I would recommend it to anyone waning to taste the Antipodean holiday experience.

    Mr & Mrs Kell, Magnificent New Zealand
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