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Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Marcus Beach
Level Contributor
23 posts
Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Would appreciate some advice. I have searched through the forums but cant find an answer to this. I apologise if I have missed it. Would love to know which of these two beach villas would be better. Any suggestions would be great! Also, are Aitutaki Seaside and Aitutaki Seaside lodges the same place? Google maps seems to indicate they are two different places close together. Thanks

8 replies to this topic
Aitutaki, Cook...
Destination Expert
for Aitutaki
Level Contributor
2,111 posts
40 reviews
1. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

HI Maree, welcome to the forum. First, I believe that Aitutaki Seaside and Aitutaki Seaside lodges are the same.

Second it's difficult to answer as to which is better without knowing what you are looking for, and how many of you are there.

Marcus Beach
Level Contributor
23 posts
2. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Thanks so much for your reply.. it’s just my hubby and myself .. age late 50’s.. The most important things for us are the deck and views, and the surroundings outside the cabin..

We love to relax outside with a book or cocktail (or both) as well as experience all the wonderful things to see and do while on aitutaki .😁

Rarotonga, Cook...
Destination Expert
for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland Central
Level Contributor
17,966 posts
130 reviews
3. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Kia Orana Maree11,

You do have a dilemna on your hands. I appreciate the seclusion of the Aitutaki Seaside studios, at the adjacent marine reserve, but also appreciate the larger Aretai villas on the lagoon setting closer to town.

If you prefer better snorkelling and seclusion then go for the Seaside lodges/studios. But if you want more internal room, closer to town, a swimming hole and nearby dining options, the Aretai villas will deliver these options.

I have visited Aitutaki more than 30+ times and have stayed in a variety of paid accommodation ranging from 5 star to budget over many years. if you could narrow the field down to suit your preferences, this would help. There is very little difference in costs between the studios at Seaside lodges at the northern point, or at the spacious villas at Are Tai nearer to the location of more facilities.

As a comparison it would pay you to weigh up Amuri Sands as a third comparison. These two villas are located south of both properties and are nearer to shops/facilities.

Kia manuia.

Aitutaki, Cook...
Destination Expert
for Aitutaki
Level Contributor
2,111 posts
40 reviews
4. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Hi Maree, I wouldn't say that dinning options are exactly close to Are Tai. Puffy's take away is the closest.

Have you also looked at the Ootu Villa or Ootu Beach house. These are similar in size to the Aretai units and are located on the Ootu peninsula with great views of the lagoon and walking distance to some nice places to eat. The snorkeling is not as good here as there isn't a lot of coral but there is a nice beach for swimming. There are no stores nearby but the managers will take you shopping when you arrive.

Amuri sands would be the smallest of the units suggested. They as well as Aretai and Aitutaki Seaside are still some distance from shops/facilities.

I have lived on Aitutaki for 22 years and have had an opportunity to see all the units suggested several times.

Sacramento, CA
Level Contributor
55 posts
6 reviews
5. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

I just returned a couple of weeks ago from my first trip to the Cook Islands. I stayed four nights at Aitutaki Seaside. I really enjoyed it. Way too shallow to snorkel in front of the bungalows, but perfect for beach watching, cocktails, relaxation. I saw one of the most beautiful sunsets there! Rent a scooter and you can get around just fine!

Lehi, Utah
Level Contributor
26 posts
12 reviews
6. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

We stayed at Aretai last week and enjoyed our stay. Keep in mind that the bungalows are what can be described as “rustic”, bare-bone accommodation. That being said we found the view of the lagoon spectacular, especially at sunset. As for snorkeling or swimming it is too shallow in my opinion. Do a tour on the lagoon or get a water taxi to drop you off on an island for half a day. “Lawton” was the on-site manager and was a joy-he coordinated dinner reservations for us and the car rental. He was there for any questions or just to chat. He was also our transportation to and from the airport. We had the place to ourselves (there are 3 bungalows) so no one else was on the beach. Puffy’s next door was closed, so dining was on the peninsula by the airport or downtown. The track to the highest point on the island is essentially right across the street. Enjoy your stay-ours went too quick.

Sacramento...
Level Contributor
236 posts
5 reviews
7. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

I stayed at Ootu Villa in December and will be returning again in September. Clean and modern villa with great views and access to the lagoon and swimming area. The villa includes kayaks that you can take out to a motu for better snorkeling. There are limited restaurants in the area, but we cooked all meals at the villa and enjoyed watching the sunset from the deck.

Regardless where you decide, you'll have a great time!

Marcus Beach
Level Contributor
23 posts
8. Re: Aretai Beach Villas or Aitutaki Seaside?

Thank you so much everyone who has given suggestions! Really appreciate every one of them.. I have booked the Aretai Beach Villas! So excited.. cant wait! thanks again awesome forum people!! xx

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