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Cook Islands Travel Guide

Lake Tiriara
Lake Tiriara in southern Mangaia

Mangaia Hotels

Ara Moana Bungalows, on the coast just southeast of Ivirua village, about three km from the airport, is run by a Swede named Jan Kristensson and his wife, Tu. There are four small thatched bungalows and two larger units, all with private shower/toilet. Two tiny backpacker cabins without facilities are sometimes available. Airport transfers are included, but add an extra charge for breakfast and a memorable dinner. Island nights with Polynesian dancing and singing are organized according to the number of guests present. Kawasaki 100 cc motor bikes are rented. From Ara Moana, Teremanuia Tauakume leads fascinating three-hour makatea hikes along the old village trail visiting four caves. Island tours by 4WD vehicle or fishing trips circumnavigate the island.

Babe's Place, just south of Oneroa, has six rooms with bath including all meals. There's a large common room with TV and a communal fridge (cooking facilities not provided). Four of the rooms are in a long block, the other two in a family house. The nearby bar gets lively during the Friday night dances. Clark's Tours does island tours from Babe's. Clark occasionally takes guests on an inflatable boat ride across Lake Tiriara and to Tuatini Cave near the lake. Bicycles and scooters can be arranged.

Mangaia Lodge is near the hospital above Oneroa. A filling dinner can be ordered. It's basic but has the advantage of providing cooking facilities for guests staying in the three rooms with shared bath in this large colonial-style house. Airport transfers are extra.

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