Friday 15 March 2013

Rarotonga Treasure Trip #3 -Story & Pictures

Yap,yap we did it again :-)

There were 6 of us on this trip -Andrew and his Partner Ira,Roma -Andrew's brother , Ira's Parents
and Me.

It was a planned to trip to combine wedding of Andrew and Ira with a nice holiday. It was a very
nice Family Ceremony with a local Celebrant :-) Unfortunately Andrew doesn't want Wedding photos go
online , so i can not post it here.

So as for Andrew - he did find his "Treasure of the lifetime" at Rarotonga, congrats again!!!

As i said there heaps to share about a trip, but i will try not to bore you with details. However
lets see the base costs to travel to such a nice (absolutely fantastic location).

509 $ return from Auckland ,Including Rarotonga departure tax! -that was awesome when we all came to
airport and were told that it is now incorporated into the tickets, so we all had extra 55$ cash
per person for Duty-free :-) (tax got incorporated in DEC, so our last October trip we paid 55$ with
a coins found )

Accommodation :
Would Vary on a season and if you want Hotel type resort or Villa for 2/4/6 people.
Maryanne, from Manea Beach Villas, was absolutely fantastic to us all 3 trips , Villas are solid
wood so they do not heat up as much as concrete hotels and you do not need aircon (makes you sick
right away in 30+ degree heat) -just use Fan and swim in a lagoon :-)
If you would ever plan going on holiday to Rarotonga, give a call/email/check with Maryanne

Simple rule for Rarotonga Holiday - BRING YOUR OWN FOOD, its better to pay 25$ for an extra suitcase of luggage one way per 2 people and fill it in with 23 KG of food . You can take all but fresh
vegetable and all products should be vacuum sealed. (fresh meat,chicken etc) as it is only 4 hours
flight, all frozen/fresh products survive the flight absolutely fine in the chill bags.
TRUST ME, its better to pay 200$  for all fancy food you want to take with you than to pay 200$ per one dine out. Following products are local and good: EGGS are 5.5$ a dozen from a local Pautry farm at Muri Lagoon, ask local for location :-), Very nice local bread and Pies. So if you feel like staying all day at beach and want a filling snack, get a PawPaw+Banana+local Pie and you can spend another 4 hours at the beach :-)

Swimming with small colorfull Fishes - Free
Swimming away from big Fishes - Free, but you need to be very fast :-)
Coconut Husking and drinking- Free - i would not say that i have mastered they husking with an ron wood stick, but was doing pretty well :

Following are really good activities per your $, that we might do on 4th trip in a future:
Fishing charter - 150$ per person per half day, with high chance of good catch (Tuna & Mahi Mahi)
Diving - 140$ per person
30 Minute flight around island 90$
there are many more. but you need to come at cooler season to do a full day explorations,tracks etc...

Now, the treasure hunting :-)
We arrived on 00:00 fri/sat flight and withing 30 minutes were at the Villa unpacking and assembling our gear for the morning hunt. We were greeted by a local resident - Hermit The Crab :

Tides, Raro has a difference of only .8 meters of water up and down, so we could detect any time of the day in the lagoon. first low tide was at 6 am with a sunrise at 6:35 so Andrew and i diced to go right away, while everyone is still sleepnig and return before breakfast. First day gave us an awesome kickstart! Andrew got big&heavy Platinum 900 ring first, making me very jelous (i still remember when he jumped out of the water 10 meters away from me shouting :"YES!, Platinum!") and 15 minutes later i scored my first 9ct gold,saying its better for my Competition, but not for the value :-) Almost every day we were finding rings and numerous coins, but this time we tried to be smarter and were swimming slightly further away from the shore, just on the edge of coins patch (people throwing coins into water) so it wasn't so boring swimming without targets, searching for rings, but also with a higher change of finding them.

Coins from the Trip :

Older coins, including Silver 6D NZ

One day we decided to visit Edgewater resort for the day as it is pretty old and big one, that usually packed through the hot season. Main buildings built about 40 years ago, giving us theoretical over 40 rings lost through the years if only 1 ring is lost a year.(we all know there are more). Unfortunately we came with coming up tide and had the area quite deep. Also the reef edge is too close, so it bacame really bouncy in the water with knocking down waves. so after i found 2 rings i call it quits.Andrew, who still was at 0-2 on that day, decided to continue,but returned with only coins after 2 hours. We reallywanted to come back again, but were short on time and tide already started to move close to midday during the week and it was way to hot, plus we didn't want to get sun kick while in the water....

So after all 6 awesome days at Muri and 1 day at Edgewater we i got 8 gold rings and 8 silver...

But we did return to the Edgewater resort for the whole day....
... we all were packed and were ready to fly back to Auckland on Friday night and arrived at airport
11:30 pm... and were told that flight is canceled...Everyone was well organized and Virgin Australia representatives advised that flight will be next day midnight and they giving everyone 1 night accommodation + 50$ meal vaucher per person at Edgewater ! Sweet! Extra 1 day holiday free :-)

Andrew decided to spend the extra holiday with his new wed wife, so his Brother and i went into the water
with low tide.Our affords were paid after about 4 hours with a gold ring each - Roma got a wicked 18k band with engraving of a wedding,dated back 1921 ! so if a person was 18 when got married,he should be 110 years old, so most likely ring spent about 30-40 years in the reef. Mine was just 10K(and some coins):

So here are My totals :

The Silver is total 53 Grams:

The Gold:

Front raw:  two 18k rings, total weight 11.10 grams , huge green stone 9CT ring, Diamond Ring
Back: 5 rings are 9CT rings
All Seven 9Ct rings are total 29.80 grams including the stones on a diamond ring and the green stone ring

I also found couple of cool items like Sun glasses that were matching Iras' hat (so sunnies were expropriated quickly)

and a very nice pocket knife that is a quite fresh drop and didn't fossilized yet:

Would i go again ? Yes, its awesome place. Love it.

Please be patient for the videos :-)


  1. Fantastic Scores!!! But where are you going on holiday next now that you have stripped Raro dry? :)

    1. nah, impossible there are hundreds of rings there and thousands of coins, sand moves in the lagoon over the coral reef itself and everythign will change with next storm

  2. Another successful adventure Max.
    Maybe you should buy a holiday home there with
    all the gold.

  3. Very well done Max

    The move to water detecting is paying off bigtime

  4. Wow that is real impressive stuff Max,your next move will be to aqualungs huh

  5. Does it count for your gold ring total these international trips? :)

    1. Yap, total 21 gold for the year.. that so inspired Maggie that he went last night to the beach and got lucky with a CUT there and scored 4 ! bringing him back to 1st position with 24 golds...

      Lucky for me- i have afternoon shift next week and going to catch all 5 morning tides all around auckland. will see if i can get 3+ golds before the weekend

      Have any mornings off? wanna join? (same for everyone else in auckland)

  6. four in one cut...jezz... I would love to have mornings off, have to wait for Easter and see if Waiheke is kind to me and Denise.. she has just got herself an etrac.

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