A mere 14,000 people are lucky enough to inhabit the 15 islands that make up the cook islands. The islands of the Cook Islands are spread over an area the size of India so its pretty easy to find your own piece of paradise. Each Island is different with its own unique qualities. Raratonga is the biggest island and the main destination for most tourists, however to really experience the wonder and beauty of this country a trip must be made to one of the outer islands.
On Raratonga there is a bus that runs fairly regularly (every 30 mins) in an anticlockwise direction around the island.
You can higher motorcycles from most hotels. We hired bikes and managed to cycle the 20km around the island in the blazing midday sun. not the best of ideas!
If you want to get further a field like another island heres where the costs rise. Spread over an area the size of India your only real option is to fly . We flew to Aitutaki after much debate, it turned out well worth the investment to get away from the crowds and see some of the most beautiful beaches your ever likely to see.
The cook Islands aren’t cheap, being a popular holiday destination with the Kiwi’s and its geographical location (a lot of things are imported from New Zealand) result in high living costs.
We managed to live cheaply by staying in a dorm in Tiare Village cooking for our selves sometimes using fruits and vegetable’s picked from the wild.
Backpacker or budget accommodation is difficult to find on Raratonga
We opted for Tiare Village. Situated on the north side of the island, Tiare Village is set in a wonderful lush tropical garden setting. The lady which ran the hostel was one of the best things about the place. She was friendly, learnt everyones names and made you feel really welcome. Tiare village unfortunately was a bus ride away from the beautiful lagoon.
A dorm bed in the main house cost NZ$20, not exactly cheap but one of the cheaper places on the Island