Aratika

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Aratika
AratikaISS005-E-13941.PNG
NASA picture of Aratika Atoll
Aratika is located in French Polynesia
Aratika
Geography
Location Pacific Ocean
Coordinates 15°29′S 145°30′W / 15.483°S 145.500°W / -15.483; -145.500
Archipelago Tuamotu archipelago
Area 145 km2 (56 sq mi) (lagoon)
8.3 km² (above water)
Length 20.8 km (12.92 mi)
Width 10.7 km (6.65 mi)
Country
France
Commune Fakarava
Largest city Paparara
Demographics
Population 120 (as of 2012)
Ethnic groups French Polynesian
Location of Aratika Atoll

Aratika is an atoll in the Tuamotu group in French Polynesia. The nearest land is Kauehi Atoll, located 35 km to the south east.

Aratika has an unusual butterfly shape. Its length is 20.8 km and its maximum width 10.7 km. It has a land area of approximately 8.3km2. The lagoon is wide and deep, and can be entered by two navigable passes.

As of 2007 Aratika had 233 inhabitants. The main village is called Paparara.

History[edit]

Aratika appears in some maps as "Carlshoff Island". This atoll was visited by the Charles Wilkes expedition on September 3 1839. Prior to the pearl market slump at the turn of the century, Aratika was home to about 2000 people, thereafter dropping to about 200.

Aratika has a private airfield which opened in 1998 and is owned by the Fourcade company. Much of the island's main infrastructure, including the school in 2004 and many business from Paparara village were moved there due to ease of access to and from the airstrip.

The population number is slowly declining and halves when the children go to school from the age of 11 as there is only a primary school on the island which has one class for 3-11 year olds.

Administration[edit]

Aratika Atoll belongs to the commune of Fakarava, which consists of Fakarava, as well as the atolls of Aratika, Kauehi, Niau, Raraka, Taiaro and Toau.

Images & Maps[edit]

Image Source: ISS005-E-13941 
Image Source: Landsat S-06-15_2000 (1:115,000) 
Map Source: EVS Precision Map (1:150,000) 

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 15°29′S 145°30′W / 15.483°S 145.500°W / -15.483; -145.500