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Liam Naden

Waitangi Day: Celebrating the Birth of New Zealand

By February 2, 2013

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New Zealand Beach
Image Courtesy of Malene Holm

New Zealand's founding document is the Treaty of Waitangi. More than 500 Maori chiefs and officials from the British monarchy took part in signing the treaty, the official ceremony of which was held in Waitangi in the Bay of Islands on February 6, 1840.

Since then, Maori and European (and later other cultures) have worked together to create the diverse and vibrant society that marks New Zealand today.

February 6 is a public holiday throughout New Zealand in honor of this event. Official celebrations are held at Waitangi but there are also events held in other parts of the country. It's also a great day to enjoy a barbeque at the beach during what is usually the warmest month of the year.

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