Useful Information about Atiu
Atiu Coffee Factory
After its collapse during the two major world wars, Atiu's coffee industry was revived under the direction of New Zealand resident agents in the mid 1950s. Though dwindled to a bare minimum, Atiu Coffee was available on Rarotonga until 1982.
The Atiu Coffee Factory was founded in 1983 and has been producing Atiu Coffee ever since. If drinking this delicious coffee at one of the restaurants and cafés on Rarotonga or at the Atiu Guesthouse has made you curious, follow Jürgen or Andrea to the plantation and processing plant as part of a coffee tour and get more facts and information.
Atiu Fibre Arts Studio
Enjoy a coffee tasting session at the Atiu Fibre Arts Studio, where you can also buy coffee and Andrea's textile art works. Since 1986, the Atiu Fibre Arts Studio has been producing art and craft works inspired by Cook Islands traditional textile art and created with modern knowledge and skills. They combine colourful Polynesian motifs with contemporary design and innovative techniques of sewing and embroidery.
They are best known for their tivaivai, the Cook Islands' traditional ceremonial cloths. "Tivaivai" means patchwork and is the general term for unpadded, unquilted, mostly appliquéd coverlets of about 2.50 m X 3.00 m, sometimes heavily embellished with intricate embroidery.
Atiu has had a colourful history. Ancient written records show that Atiu people were known as cannibals, fierce warriors, and conquerors of other islands. On some islands, pre-missionary Polynesians used to bury their dead in caves.
The accounts are not quite clear as to whether Rimarau was used as a burial cave or whether the many skeletons that riddle its underground chambers got there as the result of a battle as some legends indicate.
If you like old tales and have no problem with confined spaces, a tour to this final resting place of Atiu's ancestors will bring you in touch with the darkness of the past.