Cook Islands holidays
© Cook Islands Tourism
Imagine 15 paradise islands scattered over two million square kilometres of South Pacific Ocean and hardly anyone on them!
The Cook Islands lie in the heart of Polynesia, about 1,600 miles northeast of New Zealand. Along the pristine shores are dotted hideaway hotels and resorts perfect for a relaxing retreat. Boasting rare beauty, an idyllic climate, warm welcoming people and a pace of life unsurpassed for peace: the Cook Islands are an Island Paradise.
Comprising 67 square kilometres of pristine white sand beaches and a volcanic heart, Rarotonga is encircled by a stunning coral reef. Avarua is the main town on Rarotonga and has a friendly, bustling atmosphere. The 32 km ring road makes it easy to explore, either by scooter, bicycle, car or even by local bus and the island offers plenty of activities for visitors as well as providing the base for day excursions to outer islands.
The island has a strong cultural heritage with music part of island life, from the chants and hymns heard in the churches to the traditional ukuleles made from coconut shells. Traditional arts and crafts of weaving, carving and painting are an integral part of their heritage. Water is also paramount to this island style of life. Snorkelling, swimming, fishing, and scuba diving are vital components of this island's lifestyle. All revealing that there is a lot more to the island of Rarotonga than simply a pretty place to escape.
The beautiful island of Aitutaki is a gem even by Pacific island standards and is both unique and very distinctive from the air. Aitutaki's mini archipelago and coral reef encircle an incredible, vast lagoon. The breathtaking turquoise waters and pristine white beaches make this a 'must-see' destination for any visitor to the Cook Islands. Immerse yourself in this beautiful landscape on a lagoon cruise and view a spectacular array of technicolour fish which can be seen close up. Get your passport stamped on One Foot Island an uninhabited motu or islets in the lagoon, home to one of the most gorgeous beaches in the Pacific.
Atiu is over eight million years old and the third largest island in the Cooks. This island is an ecologist's dream and a magnet for the adventurer. Life is pretty much the same as it was 25 years ago and provides a genuine insight into island living with its five small villages. Gardens thrive on rich soil and you can occasionally smell the soft aroma of organically grown coffee beans roasting from plantations that produce some of the best Arabica coffee in the Pacific.
However Atiu's special appeal is the birdlife that will leave you breathless. The rarest bird, the Kopeka, is a tiny swiftlet that navigates its flight in pitch black, sensing its journey using its bat-like sonar power. Found nowhere else in the world it lives inside limestone caves that line the island. The endangered Kakerori and the colourful Kura flit around historical sites. In fact some 11 native birds, the loudest of which is the blue kingfisher, with its calls through the still of the jungle, can be found here.
Cook Islands holidays
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