Building peace in the minds of men and women

Indigenous Knowledge and Knowledge Transmission

The Canoe Is the People: Indigenous Navigation in the Pacific

Ancestral Voyaging Knowledge

The Canoe Is the People educational pack


"The compass can go wrong, the stars never" *
Tongan navigator 

Thousands of years ago, when most European sailors were still hugging the coast, the island peoples of the Pacific held the knowledge and skills to explore the great ocean paths around and beyond their homes.

Modern instruments didn't exist - no compasses, no radio, no radar, no GPS. The Pacific peoples navigated their canoes with their own sophisticated techniques, using the seas, skies, and sea life to guide them.



The Canoe is the People Educational Resource Pack includes:

  • Learner's Text
  • Teacher's Guide
  • Poster & Map
  • CD-ROM brochure English - Maori
  • Video

The entire CD-ROM is available on The canoe is the people Website (English, Maori)

To receive a hard copy of "The Canoe is the People Educational Resource Pack", please send a request to

* From David Lewis in Bader, H. and McCurdy, P., eds (1999)