Parades will be held in Wellington, Gisborne and Auckland in 2018. Other centres may also decide to hold parades, as Paeroa did in 2017.


Wellington: Monday 10 September

North Shore: Tuesday 11 September

Auckland (CBD): Thursday 13 September

Manukau (CBD): Friday 14 September

Gisborne:  Friday 14 September

This follows the success of the Māori Language Parades in Wellington in 2016 and 2017

Wellington Parade

The Māori Language Commission will again hold a Māori Language Parade in Wellington on the 10th September 2018.

The commission has run two parades in the past two years to launch the beginning of Māori Language Week, celebrating the language as a living spoken language. The theme for this years Māori Language Week will be 'Kia Kaha te Reo Māori' following on from the success of last years theme 'Kia Ora te Reo Māori'.

The hīkoi will start at 12pm at Parliament grounds and continue through the centre of town to 'Te Ngākau' the newly coined name for Civic Square.

We congratulate Wellington City Council who recently announced their bilingual policy for Wellington City to become a bilingual city by 2040 named Te Tauihu(external link).

We look forward to brightly decorated, colourful, themed and visually appealing walkers and floats dressed to celebrate the purpose of the parade – te reo Māori. This will make the public in the streets take notice of the parade and help increase awareness of te reo Māori.

How will people know about the Wellington Parade?

Email invitations will be sent to kōhanga reo, primary schools, secondary schools, communities, iwi, government agencies in the Wellington, Wairarapa and Kāpiti regions to attend the parade on Monday 10 September.
The parade will also be promoted on Social Media, Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori website, and other forms of communication. Businesses along the parade route (i.e., ground level shops, shopping centres) will be hand-delivered information ahead of the parade, to inform and invite them to participate by putting up signs. The Retailers Association will also be informed.

Registration – walking and in vehicle/float

There will be a simple registration process for people, schools, and organisations to let us know that they will be taking part. You can participate by walking, vehicle or by having a vehicle and float. Please see the registration form for the criteria of floats being accepted.  Register Here

Parade Route

The parade will depart from Parliament Grounds at midday and travel to Te Ngākau (Civic Square) for a celebration. The distance is approximately 1.5km and estimated travel time is 45 minutes.


Assembly times at Parliament Grounds

10.00am - 11.00am

All floats and other vehicles.

Vehicles and floats will be checked for compliance and numbered by the organisers.


All walking based groups and bands meet. You will receive numbers prior to commencing the parade.


Parade departs from Parliament Grounds.

Te Ngākau – Civic Square

Floats should be arriving at Te Ngākau at approximately 12.45pm.

1 – 1.45pm | Event entertainment

Assembly Points at Parliament Grounds

  • All parade floats or vehicles taking part in the parade must enter parliament grounds via the upper gate off Molesworth Street.
  • walkers can enter via any vehicle or pedestrian gate into parliament grounds.
  • walkers, floats and vehicles will be allocated a number when they register. This is the number to look for once you are in grounds. This number is your registered parade element number and will ensure you are in the right order for the start of the parade.
  • the parade will leave Parliament Grounds via the lower gate on Lambton Quay.
  • Marshals will be on hand to guide everyone into their positions within the parade.

What qualifies as a parade element?

The parade will be made up of the following elements;

  • walking as individuals or part of a group, marching band etc.;
  • floats (a bike, car, 4WD, van or truck);
  • and, drop off points for buses/vans.

Buses and vans are to drop school children and other groups off in the parking areas along Molesworth Street, outside Parliament. These parking spaces will be reserved for drop-off purposes only while the parade is at Parliament Grounds and until it exits.


Unless your vehicle is participating in the parade you will need to organise your own parking. 

Safety Precautions

Safety is our priority. Wellington City Council have approved this event and will be closing the parade route for public traffic while the parade is in progress. Māori Wardens, Police and volunteers (dressed in high visual vests) will be on hand to assist with the parade to ensure the safety of parade goers.

All walking groups must have assigned team leaders and the number of leaders depends on the size of your group.  You will be responsible for your group in the parliament grounds and on the parade route.

Traffic management for the parade will be the responsibility of an approved Traffic Management organisation who will ensure pilot and support vehicles are at the very front and end of the parade group.

On arrival at Te Ngākau (Civic Square)

Floats will off-load their passengers outside Te Ngākau (Civic Square) on the corner of Mercer and Victoria Streets.

  • after off-loading, floats will turn left into Victoria Street then right into Harris Street.
  • the floats can then be parked either side of Harris Street as directed, to pack up ready to travel at the end of the event and no later than 2.00pm.
  • passengers off-loading at Civic Square will be directed to designated areas by volunteers.
  • a brief entertainment programme will take place from 1.00-1.45pm.


If you are interested in being a volunteer, please fill out the online form.

All approved volunteers will be issued a high-vis vest. Volunteers will help to guide parade goers along the route and direct them to the appropriate spaces at the Civic Square.

Parade Cancellation

(Parade will go ahead unless weather is very bad)

If the parade is cancelled due to bad weather, a decision will be made on 9 September and the public will be notified on this day, and also from 6.30am on Monday 10 September via; link) link)

Twitter(external link)

Further communication will be distributed closer to parade date.

Please direct all enquiries to:


Helpful tips

Carry a large sign identifying your group/organisation by name, be it if you are in a walking group, vehicle or vehicle and float. This will help the organisers and members of your group.

Please ensure that all children bring healthy packed lunches, plenty of water, and sun protection. There will be designated areas at Te Ngākau for the children to sit and eat during the entertainment.

Float information and criteria

To ensure safety and compliance, floats must:

  • be no higher than 4.5m, no wider than 3.5m and no longer than the Road Code compliance - when decorated and on the parade route.
  • be roadworthy (vehicle and or trailer being used for the float must have current WOF or COF, registration, and insurance).
  • have safety rails (if carrying people).
  • be at the starting point of the parade no later than 11.00am - so that your vehicle can be checked for compliance and you are ready in time.
  • be numbered (this will be done by the organisers of the parade)

Only floats which meet the above criteria may join the parade. Parade traffic management reserve the right to disallow unsafe floats.

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