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Hiking

Maupiti has two mountain trails that will test your endurance, but reward you with fantastic views. One track begins opposite Snack Tarona and goes to the top of Mount Teurafaatiu (also known as Mount Nuupure), Maupiti's tallest peak at 380m (1,247 ft.). It's a hike of about 1 1/2 hours to the top. The trail is easy to follow going up, but be very careful on the way back down or you can easily lose your way.

Another very steep climb ascends Mount Hotu Parata, the cliff looming above Vaiea village. This track is very steep in places, and since the volcanic rock at the top is unstable, you cannot go to the cliff's edge. In places, this trail is more like mountain climbing than hiking. Ask your pension to arrange a guide for the Mount Hotu Parata trail.

Lagoon Excursions

Although Maupiti's lagoon is not as large or deep as Bora Bora's, getting out on it is an essential ingredient of a visit here. (Getting under it is another matter, since no scuba-diving operator has set up shop on Maupiti.) The excursions pretty much follow the usual script: a boat ride, snorkeling and swimming off a white sand beach, a stop to see the ancient ruins on Motu Paeao, and a picnic on a motu. Every pension will arrange an all-day lagoon excursion. Or you can contact Maupiti Loisirs (tel. 67.80.95), based at Maupiti Loisirs pension on the central island, which charges about 3,000CFP (US$38/£19) per person without lunch, 4,000CFP (US$50/£25) if a picnic is included.

Snorkeling

There is very good snorkeling in the lagoon around Motu Paeao, between the two shallow entries into the lagoon: Tearea (Hiro's) Pass and False Pass. The latter is called False Pass because from the sea, it looks likes a navigable pass, while in reality it is only a few feet deep. You'll find more good snorkeling in the south on the lagoonside Motu Tipaa, but be careful of the strong currents into and out of nearby Onoiau Pass.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.