What is Matariki and why is it important?
Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars also known as the Pleiades. It rises in mid-winter and for many Māori, it heralds the start of a new year. Matarikiliterally means the 'eyes of god' (mata ariki) or 'little eyes' (mata riki).
What is the date of Matariki?
This is a marker of the beginning of the new year. Different peoples celebrate Matariki at different times; some when Matariki rises in late May or early June while others observe it at the first full moon or first new moon following the rising of Matariki. In 2018, Matariki begins on 15 June.