Rai'atea(rä'yätā`ä), volcanic island, 92 sq mi (238 sq km), South Pacific, largest and most important of the Leeward group of the Society IslandsSociety Islands,
island group (2002 pop. 214,445), South Pacific, a part of French Polynesia. The group comprises the Windward Islands and the Leeward Islands (total land area c.650 sq mi/1,680 sq km), two clusters of volcanic and coral islands lying in a 450-mi (724-km) chain.
..... Click the link for more information. , French PolynesiaFrench Polynesia,
officially Overseas Lands of French Polynesia, internally self-governing dependency (2015 est. pop. 278,000) of France, consisting of 118 islands in the South Pacific. The capital is Papeete, on Tahiti.
..... Click the link for more information. . The island is mountainous, with Mt. Toomaru (3,389 ft/1,033 m) the highest peak. Uturoa is the chief port and seat of government of the Leeward Islands; it has a fruit cannery, a government hospital, and a wireless station. Rai'atea's chief products are copra, oranges, tobacco, kapok, and vanilla. Rai'atea was once thought to be the ancient Polynesian Maraiki, the religious and cultural center from which migrations to Hawaii, the Cook Islands, and New Zealand began c.600 years ago. The Maori of New Zealand still regard Raiatea as a venerable seat of learning.