The Buried Village of Te Wairoa Blog

Eruption Commemoration

Free entry Buried Village 129th anniversary Tarawera eruption

31 May 2015

June 10th 2015 will be the 129th anniversary of the eruption of Mt Tarawera and to commemorate this momentous event in our history, the Buried Village will open and offer among other things, free entry to all on both the 6th and 7th June. 

The Buried Village

The valley of Te Wairoa, home to the Buried Village of Te Wairoa, was in 1886 a thriving Maori and European community, however the eruption destroyed all villages in the area, submerging them in meters of thick ash, mud and debris. In the many years since the eruption, much excavation has been done to uncover parts of the formerly lost and destroyed villages.

Loss and Devastation on a large scale - New Zealand's greatest natural disaster

On that night much was lost – tourist hotels, two stores, a school, a church, blacksmiths and a bakery were all destroyed. Beyond that, hundreds of lives were lost and the Wairoa valley landscape was dramatically and forever changed.

The Buried Village lives on as a testament to the lives and loss of the Tarawera eruption. The excavation site, museum and Vi's Sitting Room, all bring back the essence and memory of the time. With a mixture of physical and tangible items from the day, it’s a powerful insight into the devastation the Wairoa valley endured many years ago.

The Buried Village Tarawera eruption

We look at what has been and focus on what is to come

In commemoration, the Buried Village welcome everyone, local and international to come and celebrate life today, by looking back at what has been and how it has shaped both our society and perceptions today.

History has a funny way of bringing us together, it often allows for a collective feeling and an attempt at understanding the terror and loss. And as is the nature of moving forward, we look ahead with positivity but with past events never far from our thoughts.

In the spirit of positivity the June 6th and 7th open weekend will be full of fun for all.

Free entry and Family fun for all

The Buried Village, with a lush park-like setting, hides much of the devastation of this area's violent history. With 12 acres of an archaeological site to explore there is much to see and do. As is standard on any day at the Buried Village there is access to the museum, archaeological site and among other things a walking track through surrounding vegetation to Wairere Waterfalls.

explore The buried village archaeological site

As special additions on this commemorative weekend:

  • There will be a treasure hunt and other activities for children
  • Sausage sizzle, tea and coffee
  • Coffee van for the adults
  • And to set the tone - staff dressed in Period costume

Take advantage of the commemoration and free entry this June 6th and 7th and take a stroll through history, by having some family based fun, enjoying a leisurely lunch and above all by coming in the spirit of positivity to quite simply, enjoy a deeper connection with Te Wairoa valley.

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