Recently the owners and management of The Brando and Tetiaroa Society decided together to create a cultural site on Motu Onetahi that can be visited and cared for by all of the inhabitants of the island. It will be a site that will be used for welcoming ceremonies and other cultural events. The site contains the remains of six marae (Polynesian worship sites) including the marae created by a famous ancestor Honu'ura, when he named the motu Onetahi.
The marae here represent the architectural styles of other island groups including: the Tuamotu Archipelago, the Austral Islands, and the Leeward and Windward Society Islands.
This geographical variety is significant because it is physical evidence that backs up other historical information that describes Tetiaroa as a site where ruling families from different island groups would meet to discuss and create alliances.
Last year a number of large Casuarina trees were removed from the site because their roots were beginning to damage the ancient structures.
This month staff from Tetiaroa Society and The Brando, and volunteers from Moorea, spent time cleaning up the site and preparing it for the planting of native trees and shrubs that will create a beautiful shaded place.
Then everyone was invited to a planting ceremony at sunset where each person was given a shrub or tree to plant around the perimeter of the site.