Raratonga, Cook Islands to Tonga

Leg 10


Raratonga is the largest and most populated of the 15 main Cook Islands. The Cook Islands were formed by volcanic activity and are a mix of mountainous volcanic islands, coral atolls and reefs.  Cook Islanders are finding plastic waste a growing issue and organisations are working hard to try and introduce a variety of solutions. We will step on land to work alongside a local community group to explore the issue and management challenges faced. We will then set sail the 1000 nautical miles to the Kingdom of Tonga. Whilst at sea we will be able to carry out our scientific research, trawling the surface for microplastics and even analysing some of these samples on board.  We will be able to work together to discuss our findings and suitable solutions to this global issue. 

After just over a week at sea, we will arrive in The Kingdom of Tonga, an archipelago of around 170 islands, 36 of which are inhabited. In 2009, eXXpedition Director and co-founder Emily Penn spent 6 months living on this tiny island nation, working with locals to organise one of the biggest community-led clean-ups ever. It will be interesting to see how plastic use and management has evolved over the last decade, as we share our story and findings from the nearby sea.

Partners & Sponsors

Thank You

Made possible with the support of our generous sponsors:

Leg Itinerary

  • Day 1: Leg 10 guest crew arrive.
    Rarotonga, Cook Islands
  • EVENT: Waste survey and clean-up.
    Rarotonga, Cook Islands
  • Day 2: Planned departure towards Tonga.
    Rarotonga, Cook Islands
  • Sailing, science, talks and adventures at sea!
  • Day 8: Planned arrival into Vava'u, Tonga.
    Vava'u, Tonga
  • Sailing, science and talks at sea around remote Tongan islands.
  • Day 10: Planned arrival into Vava'u, Tonga.
    Vava'u, Tonga
  • EVENT: Outreach Talk - Stories of science, sailing and solutions!
    Vava'u, Tonga
  • Day 11: Leg 10 guest crew depart.
    Vava'u, Tonga