Ngāruawāhia has a population of just over 5,000 people. It is located 20 km north-west of Hamilton, alongside the Hakarimata Range and at the junction of two great rivers - Waikato and Waipa. These rivers were once important canoe routes for Māori. Taupiri Mountain watches over Ngāruawāhia and on its slopes is the Waikato’s most significant Māori burial ground.
At Ngāruawāhia is Tūrangawaewae Marae. Tūrangawaewae combines tūranga (standing place) and waewae (feet), and is often translated as ‘a place to stand’. Tūrangawaewae Marae which is the principal marae of the Māori Kīngitanga.