• Navigate the legendary

    Tupapa heritage trail


From first arrivals to first encounters and first meetings

Turanganui-a-Kiwa Gisborne has been a destination for cultural explorers from the very start.

It’s a welcoming place for new beginnings and new discoveries – the landing place of great navigators and the origins of Aotearoa New Zealand’s defining dual heritage.

Here along the shores of Tairāwhiti, you can experience the history of Turanganui-a-Kiwa Gisborne come to life with your own eyes and at your own pace along the Tupapa heritage trail. 

Since its launch in April 2019, Tupapa - Our Stand. Our Story. has taken the definition of a self-guided walk to a whole new meaning.

Designed and integrated with a world-class app, Tupapa delivers a seamless and in-depth experience of the rich stories of tangata whenua (indigenous peoples) and allows you to gain comprehensive insight of the region’s unique culture and history – with this experience offered in both English and Te Reo Māori.

Easy enough to navigate for first-time visitors, this 4km walking tour passes by key places of interest and landmarks, with ten eye-catching tour markers guiding you from the city up to the scenic walking tracks of Titirangi Reserve.  

You can start the tour anywhere along the walk, but the best place is the 3D Trail Overview map.


Begin at Waikanae Beach just down the road from Gisborne i-SITE and walk along the scenic Oneroa walkway towards the mouth of the Turanganui River - the shortest river in New Zealand at only 1200 metres long.

Interspersed along the trail are beautiful artworks acknowledging tipuna (ancestors), a national historic reserve and even the largest tukutuku in the world – a traditional Māori artform used in meeting houses and binding waka (canoes).

Once you arrive at the summit of Titirangi, you are rewarded with panoramic views of land, sea and sky and learn about the voyaging traditions that brought great navigators to cast their anchors here.

Download the app today and prepare for your journey to Tairāwhiti  tupapa.nz