Entry via Avotora Pass at slack water looks benign, but the 2 wrecks (one each end of the pass) are a timely reminder that these passes can be tricky.

1Tiputa pass during outgoing current in benign conditions can still look pretty ugly for the sailor but..

Great sport for the dolphins and the evening dolphin watchers..2


Especially when a larger vessel exits 4

Dropped anchor (under sail for the 3rd time this season thanks to another failure by the “Green Death”, aka Volvo diesel) in calm idyllic anchorage in sand (littered with coral bommies) overlooked by the lucky guests at the Kia Ora luxury resort.



7Taking advantage of the calm weather and the next outgoing current, just a hop skip and a jump in an inflatable with Rangiroa Plongee to dive the outer reef.

8We were extremely lucky to not only see the dolphins but one clearly keen to “chill out and play”.


14The snorkelling inside the atoll behind a small motu kept us entertained when not diving. The myriad of fish and lazy black tip sharks is why this very accessible spot is called “The Aquarium”.

15161819Our daily routine started with a morning dive; either a drift dive into the Tiputa Pass where one felt like flying over canyons.


21More enjoyable and interesting were the outer reef dives with the chance of seeing “the big stuff” with a foray out into “deep blue” to see dolphins, this school of large sailfish or the sharks lingering in the deeper water.

2223… as well as the coral gardens supporting copious reef fish of all shapes and colours.



We’d highly recommend a daylong excursion to the Blue Lagoon (an atoll within an atoll) on the SW margin of the atoll. It’s a tricky place to take Sea Cloud as there is no protection from virtually all prevailing wind and waves – so it’s not tenable in anything over 10kts of breeze. Instead we relaxed while Manu from Rangiroa Fishing Tours took as small group to his family’s island for a magical snorkel amongst the sharks, fresh fish lunch and some simple R&R while soaking up the ambience. Manu did a superb job and we felt totally alone in this popular tourist attraction.