Cook Islands Map
The Cook Islands lie between Tahiti and Tonga on the main air route from Los Angeles to New Zealand. From Rarotonga you can also travel to Fiji.
Air Rarotonga flies to eight of the 15 islands indicated on our Cook Islands map, and hotel accommodation is available on most islands. Yet the scattered atolls of the Northern Group beyond Aitutaki are seldom part of a Cook Islands vacation package.
The sparkling beaches of Rarotonga and Aittutaki are punctuated by comfortable hotels and resorts with excellent swimming, snorkeling and the laid back lifestyle, promised by Cook Island Tourism.
For adventure travel, explore the rugged interior of Rarotonga and Aitutaki's turquoise lagoon. Each island is a jewel in the lush setting and warm weather of the tropics.
With a population of around 18,000, the Cook Islands is associated with New Zealand on paper but in practice it functions as an independent state. New Zealand currency is used but the territory conducts its own foreign relations and sets its own trading rules.
The right of free entry to New Zealand for Cook Islanders is the main reason these ties are retained. Tourism is the biggest industry.
Since New Zealanders live relatively close by, it is easy to find cheap round trip tickets to Rarotonga for a quick getaway.