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Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Emu Park, Australia
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Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Hi

I have read some info on the forum. But Im not sure how old it is!

I would like to bring my family us and two kids 7 and 17yrs its my husbands 50th! We want to swim snorkle and fish, he is a mad fisher!

We want on the beach, simple, relaxed ...can you suggest a place to stay?

thanks Sara

Hobart, Australia
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1. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Hi Sara

If you love going on lagoon tours for lovely snorkelling, a complete laid back way of life and great fishing Aitutaki could be for you. I would also not discount Rarotonga - people talk about it being touristy but seriously compared to what??? For good advice what is your preference of accommodation - resort, self catering and what is your budget?

Regards

Suzi

Aitutaki, Cook...
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2. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Kia Orana Sara, Welcome to the forum. Since you didn't specify what kind of accommodation you want or what your budget is I will start you off with these.

There are several good options for a family accommodation. Here is a web site that has most of the accommodations on Aitutaki: aitutaki-accommodations.com/Aitutaki_Accommo…

I would take a look at the Ootu Villa and Ootu Beach House. They have self-contained 2 and 3 bedroom options. You are on a nice beach with a spectacular view of the lagoon and a large sand bar in front where your husband can fly fish for bone fish.These are also walking distance to some of the better places to eat on Aitutaki. The snorkeling isn't that good off of this beach but it's not too far to some very good snorkeling at the Marine Research Center at the north end of the runway.

Another option is Aretai Beach Villas and Are-a Matatui. These are nice self-contained units and are located on the west side so you get the sunset. The snorkeling is better off of this beach. Also walking distance to several places to eat.

One other option is the family unit at Paradise Cove. This is right next to Aretai and Are-a-Mataui and now has it's own restaurant.

Take a look at the reviews for these and their web sites. If you don't find what you are looking for let us know what you need.

Emu Park, Australia
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3. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

hi

I would think in terms of accomodation, simple, like a suggestion that was made:

Are Tai Villas in place of Are a Matatui (its sister property located alongside) it is more basic but cheaper. I would like all of us in one cabin if that was possible, 2 rooms with double and twin. Cabin on the beach, a barbique for any fish we catch and a cafe near by for when there is no catch!

I would really like to be part of the culture rather than isolated. Its important to live a local life. Lots of fishing for my husband. Is charter the only way to fish?

thanks Sara

Emu Park, Australia
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4. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

hi

thanks, i think we need inexpensive and local I would be very happy to cook on the beach and eat at small cafes, as i mentioned it would be nice for all of us to fit in one cabin. My health is not great so i cant walk far, but i hear you have bikes anyway! (motorbikes!)

thanks

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5. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Kia Orana Sara, welcome to the forum.

If you are looking for more affordable accommodation, Matriki beach-huts sit on one of the best combined beach & lagoon spots along the Amuri - Anaunga stretch (west side of Aitutaki).

Matriki is in close proximity to cafes, and local stores - including having Tamanu Beach island night and fire dancing show right next door. Handy to Arutanga wharf for fishing adventures, and mingling with serious fishers at the newly renovated Fishing Club-rooms.

Matriki has a guest BBQ, and offer their own lagoon trips. You may need to book the entire Tree-house (both upstairs and downstairs) for your family. If you are seeking a very relaxed, down to earth, eco-minded stay, this property is a good choice -

http://www.matriki.com/ .

All the best with your accommodation search. Let us know if you require more assistance or information about Aitutaki. Kia manuia.

Edited: 14 March 2014, 18:40
Aitutaki, Cook...
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6. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

HI Sara, If your husband wants to deep sea fish, I'm afraid charters are about his only option. He may find a local who will take him out on his boat but it's not likely to be free. Petrol is very expensive here. If he wants to fish in the lagoon then there are lots of places he can fish off the beach or fly fish on some of the flats.

When you say inexpensive, what price range do you have in mind? I checked with Matriki and the entire Tree-House is $178 per night. Vaikoa units have a large beach front unit for 4 for $150 per night. They are on one of the better snorkeling beaches on Aituaki. Also there is Akaea Cottage at $150 per night just down the beach from Vaikoa. I'm afraid you're not going to do much better than this. Most places have weekly rates and you should ask about that.

We are coming up on high season June - September so if you are coming during that period you need to book soon. Matriki told me they are already filling up.

As far as being part of the culture, it's hard not to be on a small island like Aitutaki. All you have to do is walk down the beach or the road and people will greet you with a smile and a Kia Orana.

Edited: 14 March 2014, 19:58
Emu Park, Australia
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7. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Hi there

Thank you both for your replies.

I am thinking of coming Sept 20-4 Oct or 22 Nov- 6 Dec but the latter is more expensive for flights.

A couple of things. Fishing and the Club what is that the club i mean? Can my husband pick up a trip in a boat from there. Im thinking we might even do an article on this trip. Chris used to be a Photo journalist. It would be good to get an idea of all the fishing options, from joining a local fisherman out on his trip to where the fish is sold (market etc) to the deep sea fishing. You tell me im guessing. Also from a family point of view it would be good for the kids 7yrs and 17yrs to learn your culture this too could be part of the article. Peter Kuruvita produced a cooking show a year or so over there I have emailed him and can get more contacts.

Secondly from an environmental point of view I did read that Mauke also has guest lodges and this island is poised towards sustainable lifestyles as a future model for the nation. This might be a better location if it has a push towards new sustainability or would you suggest Aitutaki as the base and visiting Mauke?

thanks for your feedback.

Emu Park, Australia
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8. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Also I was thinking about the art and culture and architecture of the island? Im an architect and that might also be a good insight for the article. Are there traditional buildings on the island? Could we find companions for he tow kids as well so they can learn and have an insight into the lives of kids their age?

Rarotonga, Cook...
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9. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

Hi again Sara,

Contact our Immigration officials to enquire about the types of professional activities you have in mind. Here is the link - mfai.gov.ck/index.php/…visitors.html

The Fishing Club on Aitutaki is a social club where fishermen meet up and share fish stories. You'll find serious fishermen there as well as those affiliated with fishing in some way, including social reasons. Fishing competitions are a major part of their ongoing activities. Same with the club on Rarotonga.

For a short stay, you'll gain an overview of Cook Islands culture. Children pick up languages more readily, and they may gain an opportunity to learn our drumming or dancing through a cultural group based on Aitutaki. Once you have established which island and accommodation you plan to stay at, enquire what's possible about joining in with a cultural group,or to arrange a local school visit.

Mauke is gorgeous! Very pretty island with a stronger traditional culture than Rarotonga and Aitutaki. This island sees less visitors and has less impact from development. Except you can only fly from/to Rarotonga and Mauke, but occasionally from Mitiaro as well. If you are all more serious about pursuing sustainability and environmental interests, this would be a great island to focus on.

A very useful site to find individual island information is - http://www.ck/

Cheers.

Aitutaki, Cook...
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10. Re: Aitutaki and a good place to stay for a family of 4

HI Sara, There is very little in the way of traditional architecture on Aitutaki. One activity here that you might find interesting is the Punarei Culture tour. It's run by an amateur archaeologist who is restoring one of the ancient maraes here. He has also built a stylized village based on the way people used to live on Aitutaki. The tour includes a tour of the island with stories about the traditional legends and a trip to the marae. You will help prepare your lunch in an underground oven (umu) and after your tour of the island you will dig it up and eat off of plates you have woven from palm leaves.

Frangipani accurately described the Fishing Club. Your husband might be able to make contact there with one of the local fishermen to arrange something. There really isn't any commercial fishing as such done on Aitutaki. The charters will sell their fish to the resorts and restaurants. Local fishermen will either fish for their families or also sell to the restaurants and resorts. You don't see much fish available commercially and there is no fish market.

If you want your kids to experience the local culture they would be more than welcome to join in the classes at the local high school and one of the primary schools. School is in session during both of the date ranges you have specified. Once you are here you can visit the principals offices and get your kids involved. Araura College and Araura Primary School are located on the same grounds which would make it convenient for your boys.

Good luck with your planning.

Edited: 15 March 2014, 07:00
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