Tourism operator happy with top-10 list of Māori tourism businesses

By Te Ao - Māori News

Tourism New Zealand has released a top-10 list of the best Māori cultural experiences in the country.

The list comes at a time when tourism businesses have been hit hard by border restrictions as a result of Covid-19, so Tourism NZ is hoping to raise awareness of some of those destinations that Kiwis might have never been to see.

Takurua Mutu is the owner and director of MDA Experiences, a tourism operator with more than 30 years in the game.

As Mutu caught wind of the list when it was released, he says, "Any top 10 list is a bit subjective but it's awesome! It's choice to see our partner operators all around Aotearoa being showcased, it's really cool!" 

With the new 'Do Something New, New Zealand' campaign launched, Takurua says that any marketing campaign for tourism is "hard to measure," especially now that there is only a domestic audience due to borders restrictions for international travellers. Despite that, he was happy to see so many visitors out of the first lockdown.

"Out of the first lockdown, that winter was the biggest winter our mountain bike business, in particular, ever had, it just went gangbusters, I couldn't believe it.

"But then, coming into the 2021 summer, it's been pretty soft, and I know that's the case all around Aotearoa.

"I'm expecting a lot of businesses to close over this winter. That's just the reality of having our borders shut, [with] so much of our revenue depleted."