Escape the every day and succumb to the allure of island time.
Like your island holiday with a smattering of activities to get the blood flowing? Rarotonga, the Cook Islands’ main island, is your best bet.
Here you can spend the morning stand up paddling atop the glistening cerulean waters of the lagoon and the afternoon traipsing through the jungle-clad mountainous interior, which, by the way, is no easy feat.
Expect to clamber over tree roots, through web-like vines – knee deep in mud if it’s rained recently, to scale rock faces, to use permanently attached ropes to descend down some portions, and a lot of centipedes to keep you company.
Dazzling lagoons akin to fish tanks
Lagoons are a Cook Islands specialty. Rarotonga is encased by one, Atiu’s are filled with fish, and Aitutaki is in the running for having the world’s best.
These turquoise beauties glisten in the sun like a string of jewels intertwined around emerald isles. Under the surface you’ll be mesmerised by masses of tropical fish and kaleidoscopic corals.
Expect to spend a LOT of time in, on, or near these beautiful freaks of nature. Snorkelling, as you can imagine, is out of this world and many-a-hours can be spent submerged in the crystal clear water. Not into floating face-down in the ocean? No problem, there are plenty of ways to enjoy the lagoon from above. Try kayaking, stand up paddling, sailing, fishing…
Just be sure to gaze in admiration at every opportunity. You’ll want to remember what paradise looks like when you get home.
Ridiculously attractive (and deserted) beaches
If your sole purpose in life is to find the world’s best beach then the Cook Islands are definitely for you. We gushed over the beauty of One Foot Island in our post on The Pacific’s Best Islands and Beaches for good reason. The beach on this mirage of an island was voted as one of the best in the world.
You’ll more than likely have the entire beach to yourself. In fact, there are even beaches on the main island of Rarotonga where you can bask in quiet solitude.
It’s one of those perplexing mysteries of travel – if it’s this amazing where are the hoards of people? Just relax and enjoy it while it lasts.
Beachfront luxury abounds
You could stay almost anywhere in the Cook Islands and find yourself beachfront in the laps of luxury, but our pick for the ultimate in extravagant island holidays has to be Aitutaki.
Here you will find the postcard perfect beaches that caught your eye in the brochures and a smattering of thatched bungalows peppered along the shoreline. Did you notice those glorious overwater bungalows in the brochure? Those are here too. And yes, they’re worth the cost.
Giant smiles & that Pacific charm
With their beaming smiles and friendly disposition, the people of the Cook Islands will make you feel right at home from the moment you step foot on the tarmac at Rarotonga International. It’s just their way.