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 Snorkeling Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands.

 

Snorkeling is something to be experienced by people of all ages and abilities, whether you're novice or expert at snorkeling, Aitutaki lagoon holds something for you. Please come and join us for your Aitutaki, Cook Islands vacation. Below is snorkeling info and equipment check.

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Aitutaki Lagoon

Today's water temp.

( 78) *F

( 26 ) *C

 

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Visiting Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands for your vacation is one of the best vacation destination decisions you may ever make. The Aitutaki lagoon is as idyllic a place as you will ever find; many poets and writers have spun thousands of lines describing its wonders and beauty. Matriki was built on the foundation that all people should be able to enjoy this splendor without the high costs associated with such remote travel. Aitutaki lagoon offers snorkeling, diving,

fishing, whale watching, picnicking on beautiful beaches, sailing, kayaking, and much more. While snorkeling, you can view a myriad of colorful fish and see first-hand the giant clams of Aitutaki and the South Pacific; these clams are now protected in four separate reserves in the Aitutaki lagoon. Bone fishing is a thrill all its own - although we don't eat the fish they are truly a rush to stalk and catch. Fishing for pelagic species outside of the Aitutaki lagoon offers up Yellow Fin Tuna (Ahi), Dorado (dolphin fish), Wahoo, and array of jacks and snapper. Bring some of your catch back for the BBQ. At Matriki we practice fishing conservation - never kill what you can't eat in a few days, and never kill billfish.
The local Aitutaki scuba diving operators will safely show you some of the Cook Islands best diving; they are safe, reliable, and very knowledgeable. Matriki has hobies for hire, sail the Aitutaki lagoon and discover what all the fuss is about for yourself. Your hosts are always there to answer questions, take you on tours, sailing adventures, fishing trips, and more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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        of Aitutaki.

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Aitutaki lagoon

Today's water temp.

( 78 ) *F

( 26 ) *C

 

 

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snorkeling aitutaki cook islandsAitutaki lagoon snorkelingsnorkeling aitutaki the lagoon of the south pacificcook islands vacation, snorkelingcrystal clear snorkeling on aitutaki cook islands

 

Snorkeling on the Aitutaki lagoon is a must for your activities list. If you're like me and enjoy this sport the lagoon offers unlimited snorkeling possibilities. The water is warm and crystal clear. Matriki Beach Huts has excellent snorkeling directly off our beach, in fact there are three coral banks within a few hundred meters of Matriki. Learning to snorkel? You couldn't ask for a more perfect environment then at Matriki Beach Huts, the water is only 5ft deep and there is no current. The splendid array of fish will keep you checking your fish ID chart for days.

Make sure you bring a good mask, snorkel and fins, although we do rent masks, snorkels and fins if you would like to keep your baggage to a minimum. A wet suit is not necessary but I like to wear a shorty wet suit for the added flotation.


       Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How, of Snorkeling.

     What you'll see snorkeling the Aitutaki lagoon.

     Basics of Snorkeling

     Taking Care of Your snorkeling Equipment

   

Who?

Well you, your family, friends, loved ones, kids, aunts uncles, moms, dads, brothers sisters you name it, snorkeling Aitutaki Lagoon, Cook Islands really is for everyone. It's a relaxing way to spend a day or afternoon on the Aitutaki lagoon, and the more you snorkel the more you will want to.

 

What?

Snorkeling is the practice of swimming at the surface of a body of water while equipped with a diving mask, a shaped tube called a snorkel, and usually swimfins. In cooler waters, a wetsuit may also be worn. Combining these tools allows the snorkeler to observe underwater attractions for extended periods of time with relatively little effort.
Snorkeling is a popular recreational activity, particularly at tropical resort destinations such as the Aitutaki lagoon Cook Islands.

 

When?

When ever you can I would say, but for most people it is on their vacation time to tropical destinations. You can snorkel the Aitutaki lagoon almost anytime of the day, it's very sheltered and free of strong currents, except for the designated areas by the entrance to the shipping pier. Species of fish act differently during different times of the day so you may want to pay attention to this if you are one to study behavior. Few people snorkel during the night mostly for safety reasons as it can be very disorientating. Experienced snorkeler's can venture into the Aitutaki lagoon for supervised night snorkeling. This can really be a fantastic time to see all the creatures that normally hide during the day, Lobster, eels, crabs, shrimp, etc.

Note: If you intend on coming on a night snorkel you will need to have a dive light with good batteries. TWO separate sources of light power is a good idea, plus a cyalume stick (Chemical Light Sticks) or emergency strobe, for a total of three light sources.


 

Where?

Aitutaki lagoon, Cook Islands we hope. Obviously snorkeling is something to be enjoyed anywhere there is something worth seeing below the surface. Most tropical locals offer good snorkeling, others stand out as a must snorkel local and Aitutaki lagoon is one of these, with four reserves dedicated to giant clam preservation and a never ending supply of coral heads to look around, the lagoon will keep your interest for many hours, days, or longer. Please come and let the hosts at Matriki Beach Huts show you the Aitutaki lagoon in all its beauty.

 

Why?

Ah...the Why? We could go down several roads with this question, but it really boils down to personal fulfillment. I believe you should snorkel or dive for your own benefit and to gain understanding of the oceans environment, and how critical it is to the wellbeing of the planet as a whole. Other secondary reasons could be the great exercise value,  or the participation of family and friends. What ever reason you have for wanting to snorkel its all good, if everyone tried snorkeling I think the oceans would receive the respect they deserve. Read about one of the greatest oceanographers of all time.

 

How?

Get some gear and get in the water! It doesn't cost much for some basic snorkeling gear. All you need to get started is a mask, snorkel, and set of fins, and of course a vacation to Matriki Beach Huts Aitutaki, Cook Islands. If you are new to the sport and need a few pointers we will be happy to jump in the water with you and get you started. 


 

What you'll see snorkeling the Aitutaki lagoon.

Click the image for a larger view, click the name for in-depth information.

        

 

 

aitutaki snorkeling

 

Basics of Snorkeling

An important thing for a first time snorkeler is to be comfortable wearing the mask and breathing through a snorkel. Some people get nervous and have difficulty breathing through a snorkel while wearing a mask, so it's important to test things out in shallow water first. Many first timers have jumped into the water on a snorkeling venture only to realize they aren't comfortable wearing a mask and breathing through a snorkel. A good way to prepare yourself is to stand in shallow water, practice putting your face in the water and looking through the mask. Take slow deep breaths through the snorkel while looking around at the aquatic life. Slow so that if some water does get into your snorkel it only ends up in your mouth and not in your lugs
and you can blow it out again. In shallow waters snorkeling can be a fantastic way to see many things without expending the energy of swimming.

One of the main skills a snorkeler must develop is the ability to clear their mask and snorkel of unwanted water that may seep in. This is an essential skill, as waves or splashes can send water into the open end of the snorkel, and masks can develop tiny leaks during use. Having your mask or snorkel fill with water can be a frustrating experience for first timers. Snorkeler's should be comfortable with the process of clearing their mask and snorkel.

Clearing a snorkel is an easy process. If you find your snorkel starting to get a gurgling  sound, exhale through your snorkel with force, this will send the water up and out of the snorkel. Some snorkels come with built-in drainage valves, allowing the water to be pushed out a one-way valve. This makes it easier to push the water out if a small amount of water makes its way into the tube.

Clearing a mask is similar to clearing a snorkel, but can seem more difficult because of the reduced visibility. To clear out a mask, simply lift your head out of the water and pull forward on the front of the mask tilting the bottom out from under your nose. This will open up a gap in the bottom of the mask, allowing the water to drain out. Some masks come with a built-in purge valve, which serves the same role as the drain valve on a snorkel. By including a one-way valve which lets water out but does not let water in, snorkeler's can clear a mask of water by simply blowing air out their nose while the mask is on. The water will be pushed out the valve, clearing the mask. Even masks without a built-in purge valve can be cleared while underwater. Simply press the top of the mask to the forehead and blow out the nose. Air will bubble into the mask, pushing the water out the bottom.
The next step in learning the basics of snorkeling is to practice while in open water, when you cannot touch the bottom. To do this you will need to be comfortable with using your fins to stay afloat upright as well as to move around while floating face down in the water. As you swim along the surface, practice breathing evenly through your snorkel. The most common underwater kick is the basic flutter stroke. When used properly, this kick can be a very fast and efficient method of transportation in the water. As you kick, use a slow, comfortable pace and remember to keep your fins submerged in the water. You should find that a pace of about twenty kicks per minute will give you a good cruising speed through the water without too much fatigue. Breaking the water surface with your fins uses more energy and decreases the efficiency of your kicks. Keep your arms at your sides while swimming to reduce drag. 

If you feel a bit more adventurous, you can practice going deeper underwater by diving below the surface. The two basic types of dives are the feet-first dive and the head-first dive. The feet-first dive is the simplest. While vertical in the water, raise your chest and arms above the surface of the water by kicking with your legs. As the weight of your body begins to pull you back down into the water, raise your arms above your head, sweeping them upward to push yourself lower. Because it is harder to sink underwater when your lungs are full of air, exhale a small amount of breath as you begin to descend. Next, pull your knees to your chest and lower your head, which will rotate your body to a horizontal position and allow you to swim underwater.

The other type of dive is the head-first dive, which can be started directly from a horizontal position while snorkeling. To be most effective, this type of dive should begin with a good amount of forward momentum. As you kick forward, bend at the hips and pull your knees and arms in towards your chest. Thrust your legs straight up and maintain a streamlined position to glide down into the water. Continue to kick with your feet to move down deeper, and simply arch your back to level off and or continue up to the surface.

To increase amount of time you can spend underwater, try taking several long, deep breaths before diving, to clear the carbon dioxide from your lungs. Exhale about halfway before submerging and hold the breath as you dive. When you begin to ascend, slowly let the air our of your lungs as you rise toward the surface, keeping enough breath to clear out the snorkel with a final blast of air as your head breaks the surface.

Taking Care of Your Snorkeling Equipment

You can prolong the life of your snorkeling equipment and keep it in top shape by regularly soaking them in fresh water. Salt crystals can condense on equipment that has not been properly rinsed or soaked. These can dry and harden, causing scratches or holes in equipment and weakening straps. Rinse your equipment well with fresh water

after every use.

If Your Mask Fogs

Sometimes the inside surface of a mask will begin to fog. This happens when moisture in your breath condenses on the cold glass surface of the mask. To avoid this, regularly clean both the inside and outside of your mask with soap and water to remove all dirt and grease. If your mask begins to fog during a dive you can clear it by allowing a little water to flow into the mask. Then look downward to wash the condensation from the lens and clear the water out of the mask. One of the best tricks is to clean the inside of your mask with toothpaste, and rinse well.

If You Get Tired

If your legs become tired or if you develop a cramp while snorkeling try flipping over onto your back. This will let you tread water easily while remaining afloat on the surface of the water. The inverted leg motions will be much easier than the basic kick and will let your muscles rest and recuperate energy. Your body position should be semi-sitting, with the head above water.

snorkeling the aitutaki lagoon

 

 

 

 

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Matriki Beach Huts

P.O. Box 32, Aitutaki, Cook Islands
Phone/Fax (+682) 31564
Website: www.matrikibeachhuts.com
Email: matriki@aitutaki.net.ck

 

 

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