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New heritage trail launched at Kapiti

Aug 27th, 2009 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

PipiMAIN1PipiMAIN4A NEW heritage walk brochure has been launched in Otaki highlighting the town’s most historic sites, including one of the oldest churches in the country.

The Pipi Trail – brain child of Whitireia Journalism School tutor Queenie Rikihana (right) – takes tourists along 13 different sites on Te Rauparaha St in the Otaki township.

There are three churches on the trail, as well as nine schools and the Tainui Marae.

Kapiti Mayor Jenny Rowan launched the brochure, and praised Queenie Rikihana and her team for their pursuit and involvement in founding the trail.

“This is the realisation of a dream, a vision, and an idea of something that would make people aware of Otaki’s history,” says Ms Rowan.

Queenie Rikihana says she had a “dream that the trail will be used by our children and their children”.


Rangiatea Church - opened in 1851.

The pipi has great significance to Otaki Maori, as it is a food source on beaches to this day. When the tribes of the region migrated to the area, it sustained the migrants on the trip down the coastline.

The first ideas about the trail came in 2004, and since then Otaki Community Board chair Andre Baker and Otaki Museum chair Anne Thorpe had narrowed down the most historically significant sites to feature on the trail.

Mrs Thorpe says the aim of the trail is to tell some of the story of Otaki.


All Saints Church - built in 1914.

“I had a large list of places in mind, but Queenie was able to keep her focus and trim that number down.”

The pamphlet will available at the information booths in the Kapiti region, at libraries and at the Otaki Museum.

It begins with an invitation in te reo: “Haere mai kit e huarahi o to pipi, te mataitai i whakaora ai nga matua tupuna.”

In English: “Join us on the pipi trail and see us through the eyes of our ancestors.”

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is a Whitireia Journalism Student. Now working at the Kapiti Observer as a sports and emergency services reporter.
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