It has been a "ballistic" summer at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds with more visitors, and pre-booked tours "way-up" on last year, and plans already well afoot for Waitangi Day commemorations at the site.

Greg McManus, CEO of the Waitangi National Trust, said they had been busier than last summer. "December was slower but after Christmas it was ballistic. Our carpark is always full and we have opened up a temporary car park on the sports grounds."

Mr McManus said a "real mix" of visitors had flocked to the grounds with different times of the year attracting different people.

"Most visitors are Aucklanders, around this time school holidays are still on but, as we enter February, it will be predominantly international visitors."


This year pre-booked tours and cultural experiences were "way-up" on last year. Mr McManus said feedback received following cultural tours were "fantastic".

He said the Waitangi Museum will open with a VIP function on February 5, will close on Waitangi Day and will be opened to the public from February 7.

"I think the museum will make a huge difference as it will be an indoor venue.I think it will be great for giving people a deeper understanding of Waitangi Day."