The Cook Islands are a group of 15 islands covering over 2 million square kilometres of the Pacific Ocean. The capital is Avarua.
The islands are situated in the centre of the Polynesian Triangle and have a total population is approximately 16,000 people, attracting approx 90,000 visitors a year.
The Polynesians are well known for their friendly welcoming manner. They have their own language and own currency, but English is the main language, and New Zealand dollars is the main currency, accepted everywhere. The Cook Islands offer a unique opportunity to experience the complete tranquillity of a tropical island with no hype, no sky rises. The islands hold incredible charm and beauty, and this is enhanced by the friendliness of the people. It is a very uncomplicated life, with an easy pace.
Religion is very strong in the Cook Islands, with Christianity being very important, and Sunday is put aside to be with the family, celebrate and pray. A result of this is a lot of businesses are closed on a Sunday, including some restaurants. Always check this when making dining plans on a Sunday.
Rarotonga is circular in shape, with a mountain peak being the main feature in the middle, covered in lush green rain forest, which spread to the white sandy beaches out to the clear blue lagoon waters. The lagoon is nearly completely surrounded by a reef, great safe place for people to swim.
The main town in Rarotonga is Avarua, and it is the commercial centre of The Cook Islands. There is a good selection of shops, providing for most needs required while on the island.
The island is 32km right round the island, so everything is very easy to get to! There are two main roads. One is on the water’s edge, which is where most people travel. The second road is further inland.
Motor scooters are a fun way to get around the island. But if that is not your style, there are bikes, cars and jeeps available. There is also a local bus that regularly goes around the island in both directions that provides another inexpensive way of transportation.
There are many restaurants, most licensed, and bars scattered all over the island. They offer a wide range of menus to suit a great variety of budgets. It ranges from high class international cuisine, down to cafes offering an expresso coffee and a snack. There are a couple of restaurants walking distance, or venture further a field very easily into town for a greater range of options available. Just ask your host for more details. They can help you with bookings.
Temperature: Warm and sunny all year round. Average 22-28C.
November – March: Warmer months – with the odd tropical storm and higher humidity.
June – August: Cooler months with less humidity.