With its crystal clear waters and pristine, palm-fringed beaches, Aitutaki is an idyllic island escape. Take a boat trip out to the lagoon, and don your snorkel to see rainbow-coloured tropical fish. Stroll along the sand then sit back, drink in hand, and unwind in the peaceful surroundings of your boutique hotel.
A tropical island retreat ringed by an enchanting coral lagoon.
Things to do
Aitutaki boasts one of the world’s largest coral lagoons, surrounded by dazzling white sands and turquoise waters. Take a boat trip or snorkel out to Maina reef to spot coral and bright tropical fish. Or explore the tiny, uninhabited tropical islets for a glimpse of the rare red-tailed tropicbird.
While Aitutaki may be famous for its coral lagoon, there’s much to see on land, too. Delve into the island’s rural lanes to uncover ancient sacred meeting grounds and pretty churches with decorated walls. Take in the traditional dances, accompanied by drums, and dine on delicious Cook Island cuisine – locally caught seafood and plenty of fresh fruit.
While in Aitutaki, take the chance to explore some of the other Cook Islands, such as Rarotonga. The largest of the islands, Rarotonga has a striking mountainous landscape, and pure white beaches. While here, visit the 19th-century Cook Island Christian Church and browse for handmade jewellery and artwork in the Beachcomber Gallery.
Explore the lagoon at your own pace. Hire a kayak and paddle out to Maina reef to watch the fish glinting beneath the surface.
Top tip from SLH