Waitangi Treaty Grounds, New Zealand


Historic meeting place of the Māori chiefs and the British Crown

Expedition Overview
The Waitangi Treaty Grounds were documented by CyArk in December 2017 using a combination of terrestrial and aerial photogrammetry and LiDAR laser scanning. Documentation was completed on the entire site extents with higher fidelity capture at the Te Whare Rūnanga (the carved meeting house), the Treaty House as well as the Ngātokimatawhaorua (the ceremonial war canoe). The data will be used by the Waitangi Treaty Grounds in ongoing management and promotion of the site. The work at Waitangi was completed through generous support from Air New Zealand.  
Introducing the Waitangi Treaty Grounds
On February 5th, 1840, over three hundred different Māori and European representatives met on the lawn of James Busby's home to discuss the treaty of Waitangi and the sovereignty of the nation of New Zealand. Signed the next day by those in attendance, the treaty is considered the founding document of New Zealand. In fact, February 6th is celebrated as a national holiday in New Zealand. Waitangi National Trust, which manages the site, preserves James Busby's residence, renamed as the 'Treaty House', along with a Māori meeting house that was built alongside it to celebrate the conception of independence. 
The waka house on the site shelters the world's largest ceremonial war canoe. The name of the canoe comes from a traditional story from the Ngāpuhi tribe which resides near the treaty grounds. According to their legend, Ngātokimatawhaorua was the name of the migratory canoe that created their tribe. Work began on the canoe in 1937, in anticipation for the centennial commemoration for the Treaty of Waitangi. The canoe itself is 35 meters long, weighs six tons when dry, twelve tons when in water, and requires at least seventy-six individuals to row it. 

3D Rendering from inside the Meeting House

Summary of Data Captured

Areas with LiDAR documentation are indicated in grey. Areas with photogrammetry are indicated by yellow.

Request access to data

View Interactive map

Credits: Story

Stay in touch with CyArk by signing up for our newsletter. Support our continued efforts on projects like this by donating.

This project was made possible through the following partners:

Air New Zealand

Waitangi Treaty Grounds and Museum

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.