Every culture has a legend. To the Māori, the creation of the two islands (North and South Island) in New Zealand sprung up through the action of the culture hero or a demigod called Maui, who is famous for his exploits and trickery.
According to legend, Maui and his brothers where fishing from their canoe in the South Island when he caught a great fish and pulled it from the sea. While he was not looking, his brothers fought over the fish and chopped it up. This great fish became the North Island, which resulted in the Māori name for the North Island, Te Ika-a-Maui, which means "The Fish of Maui". The mountains and valleys are believed to have been formed as a result of Maui's brothers hacking at the fish.