Aoraki Bound

Aoraki is the sacred mountain of Ngāi Tahu and the tallest in Aotearoa.

“Ekea kā tiritiri o te moana…
Ascend to the heights of your aspirations”

The place of Aoraki in Ngāi Tahu culture is significant; the mountain is a symbol of our mana (prestige and character) and as a people we look to its lofty heights with respect and for inspiration. Aoraki Bound a 20-day cultural and personal development programme draws on this relationship to help build the leaders of tomorrow.

What is Aoraki Bound?

Aoraki Bound is a 20-day cultural and personal journey, developed and delivered by Outward Bound and NgāiTahu. It includes the physical/task-orientated/intense group focus of Outward Bound, as well as the cultural components of Kāi Tahu reo, haka, waiata, kōrero, pōwhiri, wāhi tapu/tohu whenua.

Explore our land and stories, from Anakiwa (near Picton) to Arahura, finishing at the feet of our maunga tupuna, Aoraki.

We welcome applications from those with a genuine desire to learn more about Ngāi Tahutanga, who are open to challenging themselves.

Joining Aoraki Bound

If you are interested in attending, or if you have whānau who might benefit from this hīkoi, we ask that you start by reading the information on our Join Aoraki Bound page.

We begin recruitment in August every year, by contacting those who have expressed interest in Aoraki Bound, and having a kōrero about the course.

In November, we will send out an application and medical forms to all those who have expressed interest. These forms are due back before mid-December, with confirmation happening in December/January each year.

You will be officially on the course when (1) we have spoken to you on the phone (2) we have your completed forms (3) we have received your course contribution, and (4) a final phone interview has been completed and Outward Bound have given the final approval.

Are you considering applying for Aoraki Bound?

Watch this 30 minute Aoraki Bound documentary and discover more about how this three week journey could change your life.

We welcome applications from those who have

  • A genuine desire to learn more about Ngāi Tahutanga
  • A good level of fitness (able to comfortably run 3km in under 25 minutes and walk a full day, on inclined terrain, with a pack)
  • Able to correctly pronounce Māori vowels
  • Able to pass a medical which has been approved by your doctor
  • You must be Smokefree for the entire course, and be confident in the water

Supporting Whānau into Aoraki Bound

Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, Genesis and BNZ, there is some funding available. Check out our Join Aoraki Bound page for more information on course fees and funding.

Make sure you keep an eye on our Facebook page for information, competitions and reminders!