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Aitutaki bounces back for visitors

Monday 15 February 2010 | Published in Regional

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The Aitutaki Tourism Council yesterday issued a media release for worldwide distribution in an effort to preserve tourism and visitor interest following last week’s cyclone.

The release sent out by Mike Henry said that in the interest of helping visitors to Aitutaki make informed decisions on their travel to the island, the Tourism Council of Aitutaki will provide accurate, up-to- date information on the state of services and accommodation on the island over the next few weeks as the clean-up continues.

The full statement reads:

Services

The following restaurants are open for business with full services as from today – Aitutaki Lagoon Resort, Boat Shed, Pacific Resort Rapae Bay and Tamanu Beach. Our tour companies are all operating although some boats had damage to their roofs all have started operations as of yesterday. Nane’s Tours and Safari Tours are operating although a few of the inland roads are still not cleared of trees. Full domestic air services with Air Rarotonga have been operating since Friday with increased flights being supplied as demand dictates.

Communication

Telecom Cook Islands have restored lines to most properties but internet and mobile phones are limited in their services. Some properties that are not yet re-connected to the electricity supply, there is limited internet access. A team of technicians from Rarotonga is on the island. They are progressively working to fully restore all communications systems.

Accommodation

Almost all accommodation is open although some have only opened some rooms. Almost all properties have been re-connected to the mains power supply and others are using emergency generators. For detailed information on individual properties, please refer to their websites or directly with the property.

Beaches and Aitutaki Lagoon

Lagoon cruises that operated yesterday reported that the lagoon is in great shape and received no damage other than some debris from shore. The beaches of One Foot, Honeymoon Island and Akaiami are in perfect condition and we will have images of these after tomorrow’s cruise.

Our People

Of the eight villages on Aitutaki, none escaped damage, many homes have been lost and most received some damage. There is a huge amount of tree and leaf debris that will take a few weeks to clean up. It will also take between two and four weeks for the foliage to begin its recovery but as is the case in the tropics, after just two months we will see a dramatic re-growth.

The people of Aitutaki are resilient and already have made good progress to returning their lives to normal but it will take much work and importantly it will need the support of our visitors from around the world.