Strange Cargo Tapa Gallery

some of the most favoured Tongan Tapa designs

Sila' o TongaSila' o Tonga features the Tongan coat of arms, lions, an eagle and is bordered with Norfolk Pines.

Tokelau FelatoaTokelau Felatoa is a symbolic representation of the cross section of a Tuna, a fish associated in Tongan culture with bravery.

Fata' o Tui TongaFata'o Tui Tonga has an ancient traditional motif of divided squares, representing the binding patterns of the roof of the King's house.

ManuluaManulua is possibly the oldest symbol appearing on Tongan Tapa, meaning "like a bird". Possibly a flower symbol.

Pangaikafa MatahihifiPangaikafa Matahihifi means slanted eyes, a triangular motif appearing in seemingly infinite variations. Often paired at the apex

KalaoKalao bears a stylised representation of the Mapa seed pod (from which is obtained Tonga Oil).

Holo PainiHolo Paini is the motif representing the Norfolk Pines that line the street to the Royal Palace.

LevaLeva illustrates the Leva berries. Varies between single dots and clusters of three to five berries with leaves surrounding.

TaroTaro illustrates the Taro plant.

Royal CrestRoyal Crest


THIS CLOTH is a variation on the Sila' o Tonga design featuring Holo Paini Motifs, Kalou, and Tokelau Felatoa.


A SUPERB example of Ngatu Ingatu design featuring the Halley's Comet motif, Kalou, and Tokelau Felatoa.


A fine example of Manulua Sila design.


A fine example of Manu Leva Kaloa design.

For all inquiries regarding the purchase

of the Tapa above, or further information,

contact Michael Weston at Strange Cargo. tel/fax: 64 9 309 4207