History of Porirua - Who lives here? Where are they from?

History of Porirua Settlement

Kupe was the first person to see Porirua Harbour. He was a famous Polynesian explorer. He saw Mana Island (Te Mana o Kupe ki Aotearoa). He first landed at Komangarautahiri (Komanga Point - South of Titahi Bay).

The first people to live in Porirua were Maori. They lived in Porirua as far back as 1450AD. They hunted moa which lived in the forests and fished kaimoana from the harbour. There are still remnants of their camps today.

The first European to visit Porirua was Captain Cook in 1769. He was mapping the New Zealand coastline. European settlers didn't move to Porirua though, until the 1820's. The first Europeans who lived in Porirua were whalers who hunted whales from a whaling station in Paremata.


The last census to be taken was in 2006. (A census is the official count of a population). The census shows us how many people live in Porirua and who lives in Porirua.

Below is a table showing the population of Porirua compared to the rest of New Zealand.

Population 48,546 people 4,027,947 people
European 64.9% 78.7%
Maori 20.9% 14.6%
Pacific 26.6% 6.9%
Asian 4.5% 9.2%
Other 0.5% 11.2%

* People can identify more than one ethnic group so totals will not always = 100%

Today we have a big range of cultures in Porirua. Our Maori population is higher than the NZ % and our Pasifika population is 4 times the national %. With such a big Pasifika population we see lots of cultures in our community and we go to lots of different celebrations. At our school we have a Kapa Haka group and Poly Club which represents all the Pasifika cultures in our school. We enjoy practising and performing for our community and visitors. We are proud of our culture and know our school is too.

Want to see more of our school? Then click on the following link and have a browse... Rangikura School Website