The Waikato River has and still holds a very special connection to the community of Ngaruawahia, especially local maori, or the people of Waikato-Tainui. To them, the river is their tupuna or ancestor who provides tribal identity and mana. It builds cohesion and continues to provide for the people, both physically and spiritually.
The life of the Waikato River and the life of the Waikato-Tainui people remain intact - "no limb from it's body or the head separate from it's heart".
Since the first introduction of the Regatta in 1894, the Waikato River has played a very important piece in sustaining aquatic and cultural activities and this year will be no different.
The star attraction on the river is undoubtedly the parade of the Waka Taua or great war canoes this experience alone will bring shivers down your spine. Other activities will include waka kopapa or canoe racing and waka ama racing, with a few new attractions still to be confirmed so watch this space!