This section provides information about iwi in Te Tau Ihu, the top of the South Island.

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Eight iwi are tangata whenua in Te Tau Ihu:

  • Ngāti Tama ki Te Tau Ihu
  • Te Ātiawa o Te Waka-a-Māui
  • Ngāti Rārua
  • Ngāti Kōata
  • Ngāti Toa Rangatira
  • Ngāti Kuia
  • Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō
  • Rangitāne o Wairau

Tasman District also covers the northern-western part of the Ngāi Tahu takiwā (tribal area/territory).  Murchison is within the Ngāi Tahu takiwā and Ngāti Waewae are the Papatipu Rūnanga on this north-western side.

Statutory acknowledgements

A statutory acknowledgment is legal recognition of the particular cultural, spiritual, historical and traditional association of an iwi with an identified statutory area.


The Māori population has increased steadily in recent years. As at the 2018 Census there were 4,572 Māori in the Tasman District - a 33% increase since 2013.

Kaumātua - Harvey Ruru and Jane du Feu
Fostering Māori participation in decision-making
A brief history of tangata whenua iwi of Te Tau Ihu

This page provides a brief overview of marae in our region.

Contact details for Iwi trusts and a wide range of Māori organisations. 

Websites for research as well as links to government departments and agencies.

Various iwi management plans are lodged with us to help us consider changes to resource management plans or statements.