Aitutaki Cook Islands, New Zealand

Aitutaki Island is a dream destination for would-be castaways. It is one of the Cook Islands, which is closely linked to New Zealand. The island is blessed with a luminous aqua lagoon, lush peaks, sublime beaches bristling with palms, and some of the friendliest people in the South Pacific. Aitutaki ticks all the boxes for the perfect exotic tropical vacation. Aitutaki is famous for its turquoise central lagoon, uninhabited islands and palm-fringed beaches and until now it has been spared by mass tourism.

Things to do in Aitutaki Island

Rarotonga is the largest of the Cook Islands, and the main tourist gateway, but Aitutaki, a 45-minute flight away, is the jewel in the crown, and that’s saying plenty in an archipelago of 15 ravishing tropical isles. Swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and fishing are all fantastic, and the island offers a window into the laid-back village life, which slows to a halt on Sundays for church services.

More than 20 motu (small islands) are sprinkled around the lagoon, and the small island of Tapuaetai (One Foot Island), in its southeast corner, is a popular excursion with a beautiful perspective of the lagoon. The One Foot Island is often said to be the most important attraction. It is regarded as providing the visitor with the best views of the Aitutaki lagoon. If you really want to splurge, opt for a luxurious over-the-water bungalow. From here, you can paddle to your own private motu, plonk down under a palm tree, and pretend you’re Robinson Crusoe for a day. You can explore the island by renting a bicycle, scooter, or car and drive around the island. Don’t be in a rush though as it won’t take you long to get around the island. Tourism facilities on the island are well developed, but are still low key enough not to intrude on the nature of the island.

Aitutaki Cook Islands in Photos


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