Raiatea is one of three municipalities on the island of Raiatea, which belongs to the Society Islands in French Polynesia. It is the capital of the district Îles sous le Vent.
Raiatea is situated at the northern tip of the island, 5.8 km south of the island of Tahaa and has 4210 inhabitants (2009 ) on an area of 16 km ². The altitude ranges from sea level to 479 m above sea level. Tahaa and Raiatea are enclosed by the same coral reef.
There was not even a village at the point where Raiatea is today, when the missionary John Williams (1796-1839) around 1820 einrichtete a mission station there.
Philippe Brotherson was 1972-2008 Mayor of Raiatea. He died on 5 June 2008 at the age of 79 years.
Culture and sights
The Port of Raiatea is a station of the international regatta Polynesian pirogues Hawaiki nui va'a, which takes place annually.
The gallery Anuanua exhibits works of art by local artists and sold Polynesian crafts.
The most important source of income is agriculture, there are several restaurants in Raiatea.
The Raiatea Raiatea airport is, there is a ferry service to Tahaa, a port where cruise ships dock (Gare Maritime) and a marina.