Pitufa.at » Photo Galleries » Tongareva (Penrhyn), Cook Islands

In August 2018 we spent 4 weeks in the northernmost atoll of the Cook Islands and were surprised to find a nature paradise despite two villages.

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1/48: We had light winds on the way to Penrhyn and could try out our new gennaker.
2/48: This is how a ship's cat drinks: always keeping the nose over the rim...
3/48: We checked in in the main village Omoka which lies on the windy western shore of the lagoon.
4/48: Many Cook Islanders leave their islands and prefer to live in New Zealand.
6/48: We met Mike White, the local scientist who does studies on climate change and tries to protect the turtles.
7/48: All electricity comes from solar power.
8/48: When we got to Penrhyn most islanders were away visiting the capital Rarotonga, but soon after they arrived on this ship.
9/48: Happy reunions and lots of parcels...
10/48: The arrival was celebrated with songs, speeches and a buffet.
11/48: On the other side of the lagoon lies the even sleepier village Tetautua. The Nurse sharks here are used to be fed scraps.
12/48: Church is the main event of the week.
13/48: In the nearby pass the corals are dead in most places, but some new recruits try to revive the area.
14/48: Whitetip and blacktip reef sharks followed us everywhere.
15/48: Huge swarms are the main attraction of the pass.
17/48: Butterfly fish are plentiful in all varieties.
18/48: In some shallow parts the coral seems to have adapted to the warmer temperatures.
19/48: Exloring the lagoon is tricky because of many coralheads and some areas with murky water.
20/48: Finding a sandy spot to anchor is also a challenge (note the floated chain).
21/48: We started exploring the eastern motus...
22/48: This little blacktip tried to inspect Christian's shoes.
23/48: The motus are all extremely different. Some are stony...
24/48: ...others feature fine, pink sand.
26/48: 1000s of tropic birds live on all the eastern motus.
29/48: We hopped to a new anchorage every few days.
31/48: Noddy-tree
39/48: In the far South we anchored in crystal-clear water surrounded by coral heads that are touching the surface.
41/48: This curious young booby almost landed :-)
42/48: Red-footed booby chick.
43/48: We were astounded to find several nesting masked boobies on one of the remotest little motus.