A replica of Captain James Cook's ship Endeavour will visit historic landing sites as part of a commemoration to mark the 250th anniversary of the first encounters between Māori and Europeans.
It will take place in October 2019 and the government is contributing $3.5 million.
The Endeavour replica will visit four of the main sites Cook' visited during his 1769 voyage, as well as other harbours.
The opening ceremony of the three-week event will take place in Gisborne.
Former prime minister Jenny Shipley is heading the national coordination committee.
"It is a commemoration for all New Zealanders to own, a commemoration which will lead to a greater understanding of our unique heritage in the pacific and who we are as New Zealanders," she said.