This Is Why

in the Cook Islands
Is an Adventurer’s Dream

Spectacular wild landscapes. Bizarre Makatea cliffs. Exotic white sandy beaches.

everything you need to know about the fascinatingly fabulous Mangaia in the Cook islands

Mangaia is a terraced island and the most southern island of the Cook Islands. And you would do well to respect it for its age, estimated to be 18 million years old, the oldest in the entire Pacific Ocean.

The island boasts a spectacular wild landscape, bizarre Makatea cliffs overlooking exotic white sandy beaches. All untouched as unexplored as its intricate cave systems.

Here's a Free Handy Mangaia Infographic For You

Our Mangaia infographic contains essential information for you to plan your visit.

We have prepared detailed infographics for each one of the Cook Islands islands. Visit the pages of the islands for their respective infographics.

Click below to download your high resolution infographic of Mangaia.

Basic Info and Stats About Mangaia in the Cook Islands



The island forms part of the Southern Island Group.


Getting There

Mangaia is about 200 kilometers/ 124 miles southeast of Rarotonga. It is reachable from the main island with a regular 45 minutes flight.


Size Of Mangaia

At 52 kilometers2 / 20 miles2, it is the second largest and most southern island of the Cook Islands.



Mangaia is a volcanic island, with a central volcanic plateau. The plateau enclosed with a 60m high cliff of fossil corals called the Makatea.

It is estimated to be 18 million years old, making it the oldest islands in the Pacific Ocean. It has rough coastlines, with beautiful secluded sandy beaches. It has a little know but complex cave systems.


Inhabitants & Tourist Numbers

The population totals 499 people.

Only a handful of tourists come here each year.

Mangaia Offers the Bare Essentials in Its Infrastructure



A sandy airstrip and small airport hut greet you on your arrival. The tiny airport only opens when the small passenger plane arrives and departs.



There is no public transport. Your host organizes vehicles to explore the island.



Tours are not plentiful but your host can arrange a guide for any type of tour you wish to undertake.

Mangaia Rock



Only two places offer accommodation. One is at the southern end of Oneroa village, which is more of a homestay style accommodation.

The other is between the airport and north Oneroa on a white sandy beach.


Shopping & dining

Mangaia has two stores offering necessary supplies. It has no restaurants or pubs.



There are no ATMs. Be sure to bring along enough cash.



Basic medical care is available on Mangaia.


Extraordinary Adventures You Absolutely Must Do When in Mangaia

1 Hang out on secluded dream beaches

Spectacular white sandy beaches surrounded by the rough and bizarre volcanic landscape. A bit like The Beauty and The (Beautiful) Beast.

Mangaia has a large selection of magnificent beaches that are completely isolated.

2 The Tuatini Caves are A Treasure Chest

The Tuatini caves are a relatively untouched labyrinth cave systems. The cave is filled with magnificent stalactites and stalagmites formations creating.

Floors, walls, and ceilings all shimmer with their crystalline covering. Majestic and spectacular as they glitter like treasure chests

3 The Saragossa Shipwreck

Hiking to the Saragossa, you will walk through various types of terrain. Walkthrough Makatea gorges, dense rain forest, and bushland to the coast. As you emerge to see the beach, the remains of the Saragossa is visible.

As strange as it may sound, it’s a wild-romantic place to relax.

Mangaia caves
Mangaia caves3
Mangaia shipwreck
Mangaia saragossa
Mangaia waters
Mangaia taro

4 Meditative Silence In The Taro Fields

The central Taro fields are where the locals grow fruits, vegetables, and their staple, Taro.

These areas are cocooned amongst lush vegetation and the bizarre Makatea. It creates a very soothing atmosphere.

Mangaia fishfeeding

Like What You've learnt about the Mangaia?

We have tons more info in our Cook Island Travel Guide

The Cook Islands Travel Guide is jam packed with details of all the islands of the Cook Island. Contact information. Detailed maps with geocodes and much more.

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