Cook Islands on a BudgetCooking Islands with budget
There are many places in the worid that boast clean sandbeach, blue water and an insular way of life, but there is nothing better than the Cook Islands. Situated in the Pacific Ocean, the Cook Islands are 15 populated islands covering 849,424 sq. m. between Polynesia (Tahiti) and Tonga.
The islands populated by Polynesians have less than 15,000 inhabitants and are full of cultural, historical, landscape and experience. Northern Cook Islands consist of seven low-lying, thinly populated atolles. Southern Cook Islands consist of eight raised, fruitful volcano islands and the Cooks' capitol, Rarotonga.
Rarotonga, Aitutaki and Atiu are the three most popular islands. The Rarotonga is the chef's core. Within 88 mile you can travel the famous clock or counter-clockwise coach to discover the islands by road or motorbike. In Rarotonga, the first choice you have to make is how preoccupied or relaxing you want to be during your holiday and there are many different islands to visit.
Romance cruise sunsets on boat, ankle-deep food in the hot waters on a lovely sandy shore or accompanied walks in the mystical cloudbursts, just to name a few of our possibilities. Off the record known as Honeymoon Island, Aitutaki is less than an hour's flying time from Rarotonga. Aitutaki' breathtaking laguna makes it unrivaled on the Cook Islands for aquatic activity, but the fascination does not stop at the seas.
Drive across the lagoon to the smallest postal station in the hemisphere, the One Foot Islands (motu Tapuaetai). If you want to have an isolated isle for the whole outing, a counselor can arrange a picknick and "roll" pairs to an abandoned moto. Atiu, the third biggest chefs' paradise, is one of the few unspoilt places in the canteen.
Approximately over eight million years old - the archipelago is primeval, untouched, luxuriant with thick rain forests and encircled by spectacular coastline corals. Its most interesting characteristics are the many lime caves: It is a natural treasury with three cave, a stalagmite, stalactites, a freshwater basin and a high well.
Situated in the heart of the mainland, the island's small towns are home to a wealth of land and some of the best Arabic coffees in the Pacific area. Cook Islands are known for their lively cultural life and it is advisable that the visitor plan an archipelago overnight for the duration of their sojourn.
Tradicional dances and drums by locals are combined with a tasty bar with many locals meals such as ?ika mata? ( "marinated uncooked seafood salad") or `umi kai', a tradicional way of preparing a dish in the ground-furnace. From the family to the couple, everyone is taken care of on the islands.
New Zealand's Cook Islands are denominated in dollars, which is very valuable for food and drink. Don't miss the Punanga Nui cultural market in the centre of Rarotonga. You can find here a wide range of products, with the exception of Sundays: new products, regional shows, shell and bead jewellery, wood carvings and weavings.
On Saturdays Air New Zealand operates a non-stop flight from Los Angeles and returns on a Friday. As an alternative, the Cook Islands are an excellent stop-off to Sydney or Auckland. More information about the Cook Islands can be found in Down Under Answers. For more information, please click here.