Visit Penrhyn, Manihiki and Pukapuka on one unforgettable charter adventure trip!
This is an adventure tour that provides
a rare opportunity to visit the distant and remote northern
group atolls of Pukapuka, Manihiki and Tongareva (also known
Flights are scheduled according to demand which is normally
for one tour every two to three months. The flights are operated
by Embraer Bandeirante turboprop aircraft, which have a capacity
of 15 passengers, but are restricted to 9 passengers on these
long flights due to the extra fuel load.
Light refreshments are served and the aircraft has a toilet.
Contact us for accommodation/meal options as they do change
from time to time.
The passenger complement usually
includes several government officials from the local health
and education departments, telecom technicians and the like,
making their rounds of the far-flung northern islands. Normally
a strong rapport develops among members of the group and adds
to the fun and adventure of visiting some of the South Pacific's
most remote island communities, and spectacular atolls.
The flight departs from Rarotonga
International Airport at 7 am and arrives at Pukapuka at 11
am and may include a short stop at Aitutaki for refueling. In clear
conditions, passengers are treated to spectacular views en-route
of Suwarrow (Where hermit Tom Neale lived his solitary existence),
Nassau and Tema Reef.
Pukapuka's airport is located on the southern motu, about one
hours boat ride across the spectacular lagoon to the main settlement
at Wale. This is a fascinating island and community, not the
least because of the romantic writings of Robert Dean Frisbie.
A strong community organisation and visionary environmental
management practices have sustained these people for centuries.
Guest house accommodation by arrangement at a government guest
Departing Pukapuka at 10.30 am, a one and a half hour flight takes you to Manihiki Atoll, the home of the Cook Islands black pearl industry. Here, the lagoon is dotted with small structures perched on coral heads serving as platforms for the seeding of oysters, that will, after nearly two years, yield a lustrous south seas black pearl.
You will spend two nights here at a guest house or on a black pearl farm where you will be fascinated by atoll lifestyle, and the dedication and effort required to produce the queen of gems.
It's a flight of a little over one hour to reach the World War 2 airstrip at Tongareva, the northern-most of the Cook Islands. American serviceman were based on the atoll in the 1940s and built a large runway in the event hostilities in the Pacific should reach this far east. At times during the War, a number of large US naval vessels moored in the large deep lagoon.
The remains of a crashed B17 bomber remain as evidence of this bygone era. A tragic encounter with 'blackbirders'
(South American slave traders) in the early 1800s, the pearl shell trade, and World War 2 have all played a part in shaping Tongareva as it is today. This remote outpost remains home to approximately 600 islanders who spend their days fishing and more recently, cultured black pearl farming.
The tour departs at midday for the
last leg of the journey, a four hour flight south to Rarotonga
- and cool drinks, soft beds and a large steak!
For pricing and more information on the Northern Atolls Adventure consult our Charter Rates or Call our Travel Centre on +682 22888 or email our charter specialists at firstname.lastname@example.org for details of the next scheduled departure and accommodation options.
Due to the increased cost of fuel
this tour is now only available as a charter. All additional
paying passengers, if you wish to have non-excluse use of our aircraft and crew, will be offset against the charter cost with
a two week no-cancellation policy, which can considerably reduce your cost of the charter.
This tour involves long range over
water flying in small turbo-prop aircraft and is not to be confused
with regular airline travel. Because of the logistics of fuel
and other operational arrangements in this isolated area, delays
to departures can occur.
Air Rarotonga will not be responsible
for disrupted passenger expenses in the event of a delayed departure
from Rarotonga. Normal disrupted passenger expenses will be
covered by the airline in the event of delays during the course
of the tour, that arise after departure from Rarotonga.