Tearataia Temanu


Long ago, the people from the island of Aitutaki thought that they would like to change their island. It was very flat and did not have any hills.  They thought they would like to have a hill. “Where could we get a hill?” the people asked.

“I know,” the chief said. “We will send our big canoes out to sail to the island of Rarotonga. They have many hills and mountains. We will take one and bring it back here to Aitutaki.”

The canoes sailed across the sea, until they came to Rarotonga. The men waited until it was night, then landed on the beach and crept inland.

They went past a village and everyone in it was asleep.

“This is a fine mountain,” the chief said at last. But, it is too big. Let us cut the top of the mountain and carry it out to the beach.”

As they were putting it on the canoes, a lot of big rocks fell into the water. They sailed back to Aitutaki and put the hill in its place.

It is there today, the only hill on the island, called Maunga Pu at the height of 39 feet.