Hawaii + Pacific Islands
Aitutaki is sometimes called the Bora Bora of the Cook Islands. The main attraction of the island is the lagoon, which has so many shades of blue water you will run out of adjectives attempting to describe them. A must is a lagoon cruise - and some tourists fly to Aitutaki from Rarotonga for the day to do this. There are several operators who do these cruises. Bishops is one company that offers both large and small pontoon cruises. Most of the cruises stop for a snorkeling break near Honeymoon Island and visit One Foot Island (where you can find one of the smallest post offices in the world). Lunch is provided as part of the cruise.
Best Time to Visit Cook Islands
Warm and sunny weather will welcome you year round in the Cook Islands, which are located in the Tropic of Capricorn.
Average temperatures range between 64 degrees Fahrenheit and 82 degrees Fahrenheit in their winter (May through October) and 70 degrees Fahrenheit and 84 degrees Fahrenheit in their summer (November to April). Most of the rainfall occurs from January through early May.
Introduction to the Cook Islands
The Cook Islands are located in the South Pacific with Tahiti to the east and Samoa and Tonga to the west. The Cook Islands share the same time zone as Hawaii. Spread out over 850,000 square miles of the ocean, the 15 islands - a total of about 93 square miles - that comprise the Cooks are divided geographically into six Northern Islands and nine Southern Islands.
Language and Common Words
Common Words and Phrases
You'll hear this cheerful greeting from everyone as you move around the islands. It means 'may you live on'.
Rarotonga offers dozens of restaurants in a variety of price ranges and with different cuisines. Downtown Avarua has the largest concentration of restaurants ranging from Mama's or the Blue Note Café to the Tamarind House with its international menu. Trader Jack's is legendary - when a cyclone took out their restaurant, they reopened for a time in a ship container and were known as Jack's in the Box until they rebuilt in their harbor-side location.
Travelers to the Cook Islands will find a number of stores that offer local black pearls for sale both loose and in jewelry.
Traveling and Transportation
Air New Zealand is the primary airline servicing the Cook Islands. It offers flights from Los Angeles, Hawaii, Tahiti, Australia and New Zealand. Pacific Blue offers flights from Australia and New Zealand.