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Meheti'a or Me'eti'a is a volcanic island in the Windward Islands, in the east of the Society Islands in French Polynesia. This island is a very young active stratovolcano 110 kilometres (68 mi) east of the Taiarapu Peninsula of Tahiti. It belongs to the Teahiti'a-Mehetia hotspot.

Native name:
Coastal view of Osnaburg Island (now Mehetia, French Polynesia)
Karta FP Societe isl.PNG
LocationPacific Ocean
Coordinates17°52′S 148°04′W / 17.867°S 148.067°W / -17.867; -148.067Coordinates: 17°52′S 148°04′W / 17.867°S 148.067°W / -17.867; -148.067
ArchipelagoSociety Islands
Total islands1
Major islandsMehetia
Area2.3 km2 (0.89 sq mi)
Highest elevation435 m (1,427 ft)
Highest pointMont Fareura
Overseas collectivityFrench Polynesia
Administrative subdivisionWindward Islands
Mont Fareura
Mehetia NASA 2000.jpg
NASA Geocover 2000 image
Highest point
Elevation435 m (1,427 ft)
Prominence435 m (1,427 ft)
Coordinates17°52′S 148°4′W / 17.867°S 148.067°W / -17.867; -148.067
LocationSociety Islands
Mountain typeStratovolcano
Last eruptionUnknown

The island has an area of 2.3 square kilometres (0.89 sq mi) and its highest point is 435 metres (1,427 ft). Meheti'a's well-defined volcanic crater contains a very active hot point. In 1981 the island was the centre of earthquakes.



Tahitian oral tradition holds that navigators stopped at Mehiti'a, which was regarded as sacred, on their long voyage to New Zealand.[1]

The first European sighting was by the Spanish expedition of Pedro Fernández de Quirós on 9 February 1606, that charted it as Decena (ten in Spanish).[2] Later on it was sighted by Samuel Wallis in HMS Dolphin 1767 and Louis Antoine de Bougainville in 1768.[3] It was also sighted by Spanish navigator Domingo de Boenechea on November 6, 1772 on ship Aguila.[3]:241 He named this island San Cristóbal.


Meheti'a is administratively part of the commune (municipality) of Taiarapu-Est and of its easternmost commune associée Tautira. The island is uninhabited and doesn't have much vegetation but has a small coral reef on the underwater slopes.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Scoria blocks reinforces early Polynesian links to Southland". The Southland Times. Stuff. 3 April 2019. Retrieved 15 April 2019.
  2. ^ Corney, Bolton Granvill The quest and occupation of Tahiti by emissaries of Spain during the years 1772-1776, London, 1913, Vol I, p.XXX
  3. ^ a b Salmond, Anne (2010). Aphrodite's Island. Berkeley: University of California Press. pp. 39, 45, 93. ISBN 9780520261143.

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