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Where can I collect some shellfish in Rarotonga?

Paihia, New Zealand
1 post
Where can I collect some shellfish in Rarotonga?


One of my best experience is took go dig for shellfish on the beach. Cooked and ate them right on the beach in bay of island new zealand with the locals.

It is so much fun compare to just buying from the market or ordering a dish from restaurant. Any beach in Rarotonga that I can dig some during low tide?

How about bthe est snorkelling spot? I love those with very clear water, colorful carols and tons of fishes.

Will be there in May. Thanks and cheers!

Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
549 posts
59 reviews
1. Re: Where can I collect some shellfish in Rarotonga?

I didn't see a lot of shellfish in Rarotonga. In Aitutaki I did have mud crab at Tupuna's but I don't know where in the lagoon they found it.

We snorkelled in Raro but didn't see a lot of colourful coral. We saw some good fish life near The Rarotongan. Unfortunately, we didn't get to snorkel at Fruits of Rarotonga, which I have heard has great snorkelling.

If you are going to Aitutaki there's some good snorkelling in the lagoon if you do a lagoon tour. Lots of colourful corals and fish.

We did many scuba dives on Raro and saw a ton of fish that way. If you're up to it, go and see Pacific Divers for an intro to scuba diving. I think they also do some night snorkelling trips.

Rarotonga, Cook...
Destination Expert
for Rarotonga, Waiheke Island, Southern Cook Islands, Auckland Central
Level Contributor
18,142 posts
130 reviews
2. Re: Where can I collect some shellfish in Rarotonga?

Kia Orana Alyx,

Welcome to our Cook Islands forum.

We dont have shellfish like pipi and tuatua in Raro and Aitutaki. We used to have lots of ka'i (shellfish); especially ariri (turban shell), but sadly depleted. Same too with pa'ua, which Marine Resources technicians are now attempting to reseed into Aitutaki lagoon. Quite a number of lagoon areas are under ra'ui (protective) status so when gleaning the lagoon for shellfish just be mindful of blue signboards explaining the protective measure in the surrounding area. Always ask a local before taking lagoon species.

The most popular ra'ui on Rarotonga is situated in Tikioki where the bus stop is opposite Catholic church & Fruits of Rarotonga. Best site for snorkelling since this marine reserve was implemented 10 years ago and has a healthy ecosystem with tropical fish species and some corals present. Ra'ui in place at the Rarotongan is showing healthy signs of regeneration, good snorkelling also. The Edgewater resort has only recently implemented their ra'ui.

The lagoon cruises based in Muri take guests to view the interior reefline around Tikioki. while the glass-bottom boat Reef Sub from Avatiu wharf operated by Huw & Sheryl John takes guests beyond the reefline to view and snorkle reef species. This couple are highly regarded scuba divers who formerly managed the Rarotongan resort's scuba dive centre and who helped implement the marine reserve in the Aroa area (where Rarotongan resort mr is located)..

Being May now, not long to go before you enjoy outdoors activities in the warm Cook Islands sunshine. Kia Manuia.

3. Re: Where can I collect some shellfish in Rarotonga?

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