'Always a Friday': Matariki public holiday dates for next 30 years announced

The Government has released the dates for the Matariki public holiday for the next 30 years.

Making Matariki a public holiday was one of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's pre-election promises with the first date announced at Waitangi this year as June 24, 2022.

The calendar date for the Matariki public holiday would shift each year to align with the maramataka (Māori lunar calendar) and would always be on a Friday, Ministers Peeni Henare and Michael Wood said in a joint statement.

Announcing the holiday dates for the next three decades would give communities and businesses certainty, the ministers said.

Henare said Matariki was a uniquely New Zealand public holiday and the first that recognised Te Ao Māori.

Matariki is the Māori name for the Pleiades and refers to a cluster of stars that rise in mid-winter, marking the start of the Māori New Year.

It is celebrated differently throughout Aotearoa among ngā iwi Māori, traditionally a time for reflection, ceremonies, and events that welcome a promise of the new year.

Some iwi name this time of year Puanga, after a bright star that is above and to the right of the Matariki constellation.


Photo / Creative Commons

"Mātauranga Māori has been at the heart of decision making on the new public holiday," Henare said.

"The Matariki Advisory Group, recognised experts in Te Ao Māori and the mātauranga associated with Matariki and the Maramataka, have led this process, providing advice and engaging with communities across Aotearoa."

The advisory group included chairman Professor Rangiānehu Matamua, Hoturoa Barclay-Kerr, Rereata Makiha, Victoria Campbell, Dr Pauline Harris, Dr Ruakere Hond and Jack Thatcher.

"We are grateful for their guidance, which is helping ensure Te Ao Māori is embedded within the day."

Matariki Holiday Dates

2022 - June 24

2023 - July 14

2024 - June 28

2025 - June 20

2026 - July 10

2027 - June 25

2028 - July 14

2029 - July 6

2030 - June 21

2031 - July 11

2032 - July 2

2033 - June 24

2034 - July 7

2035 - June 29

2036 - July 18

2037 - July 10

2038 - June 25

2039 - July 15

2040 - July 6

2041 - July 19

2042 - July 11

2043 - July 3

2044 - June 24

2045 - July 7

2046 - June 29

2047 - July 19

2048 - July 3

2049 - June 25

2050 - July 15

2051 - June 30

2052 - June 21

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This article was first published on the NZ Herald and is republished here with permission.