DISCOVER THE COOK ISLANDS HOSTED TOUR
Rarotonga and Aitutaki.
Optional extension to Atiu, Mangaia or even the remote northern islands of Manihiki and Pukapuka.
Depart Auckland sunday 24 July, 2022 - return sunday 31 July . Hosted by Stephen Greenfield, ex resident of, and many times visitor to, the Cook Islands.
Operations dependent on the 'bubble' remaining open. We strongly recommend all participants are vaccinated prior to travel.
Day 1. Sunday/Saturday. ARRIVE RAROTONGA (D)
Meet your escort at Auckland airport and depart aboard Air New Zealand flight at 8.55am. Crossing the dateline means arrival saturday. Arrival in Rarotongais scheduled for 2.30pm and we will be met and transferred to Pacific Resort or Edgewater Resort. Dinner at the hotel..
Day 2. Sunday (again). RAROTONGA (BD)
Free day to relax, unwind, enjoy the lagoon and all the activities of your resort. We do recommend visiting a local church this morning to enjoy the beautiful singing and a major part of Cook island life.
Day 3. Monday RAROTONGA (BD)
Enjoy a leisurely orientation tour of Rarotonga, just 32 km in circumference. Circle the island and visit Avarua, the capital including the Cook Islands Museum, whale and wildlife centre, perfume manufacturing centre, plantations, the "Ara Metua" ancient road, Wigmore's waterfall, Muri lagoon from where the Maori migration left for New Zealand (with time to swim), enjoy beautiful beach and lagoon vistas plus the rugged mountains of the interior. See and learn of the culture and the value of the coconut tree. This evening you will be picked up and transferred to Highland Paradise historic marae to learn of the history of King Tinomana. Tour the ancient village and enjoy an Umu feast and cultural show.
Day 4. Tuesday. MURI LAGOON CRUISE (BL)
We will be transferred to beautiful Muri lagoon.to join your crew for a fun day out on the water. Swim, snorkel, relax, enjoy a fresh fish barbecue lunch, watch the coral through a glass bottom boat and be entertained by your crew. Return to your hotel mid afternoon.
Day 5. Wednesday RAROTONGA - AITUTAKI (BD)
Transfer to the airport and fly to the beautiful island of Aitutaki, renowned as one of the most beautiful atolls in the Pacific and flying boat stopover point on the historic Coral Route. Transfer to your accommodation. This afternoon enjoy a tour including the site of an ancient marae, main village, historical landmarks, plantations, and WW2 bunkers. Dinner at the hotel
Day 6. Thursday. AITUTAKI – LAGOON CRUISE (BL)
Enjoy a full day cruise on Aitutaki lagoon to Barefoot and Akiami islands. Plenty of time to swim and snorkel and enjoy a barbecue lunch. Dinner is not included tonight to let you choose.
Day 7. Friday AITUTAKI - RAROTONGA (BD)
Transfer to the airport and fly back to Rarotonga. Transfer back to your hotel with the opportunity for more lagoon time. Farewell dinner at a local restaurant included tonight.
Day 8. Saturday/Sunday. RAROTONGA - AUCKLAND (B)
Free morning to relax in the lagoon, shop, or whatever you wish before transferring to the airport. Depart at 3.55pm with Air New Zealand arriving Auckland 6.25pm.
OPTIONS TO ATIU, MANGAIA, AND OTHER COOK ISLANDS WILL BE DEVELOPED DEPENDING ON DEMAND AND THE OPENING OF MORE FLIGHT OPTIONS WITHIN THE COOK ISLANDS. Register for any island you wish to visit.
Fly to the island of Atiu, a raised coral atoll. Arrive Atiu and transfer to Atiu Villas or similar.
Sightseeing includes the Cape where Captain Cook landed in 1776, the harbour, main village, a coffee plantation, and Fibre Arts village
Day 2. ATIU (B)
Atiu is a raised coral atoll surrounded by the “Makatea” fossilised coral cliff rising from a narrow reef and lagoon and includes many caves. Walk through the rainforest to visit Anatakitaki cave, home of the Kopeka swallow unique to Atiu and enjoy the eco tour.
Day 3. ATIU (B)
A day to relax and, meet the local people, and chill at your leisure.
Day 4. ATIU - RAROTONGA (B)
Fly back to Rarotonga and transfer to your hotel on Muri lagoon,. You are welcome to stayover in Rarotonga or visit Mangaia or Mauke, or the remote northern 'pearl' island of Manihiki if you wish.
DISCOVER MANIHIKI. 8 days/7 nights. Departs Rarotonga most tuesdays
Includes return air fares from Rarotonga, 7 nights accommodation at Manihiki Lagoon Villas, breakfast ingredients, 1 day lagoon and pearl farm cruise/tour. Tour cost per person share twin $4,800.
Discover Maniihiki and Pukapuka
Visit the Remote northern Cook Islands where very few tourists go
Special hosted departure available any week subject to availability of aircraft for a minimum of 6 passengers.
Day 1. ARRIVE RAROTONGA
Arrive Rarotonga and transfer to our accommodation at Pacific Resort.
Day 2. Sunday. RAROTONGA (B)
Free day to relax, enjoy the lagoon or explore the island.
Day 3. Monday. RAROTONGA - MANIHIKI (BLD)
Our 2 hour flight by chartered Citation jet will bring us to the remote atoll of Manihiki, home to the Cook Islands pearl industry. Here the lagoons are dotted with small structures serving as platforms for the seeding of oysters that will, after nearly 2 years yield a lustrous South Seas black pearl. Manihiki's lagoon measures some 44.6 sq km enclosed in a reef almost 17 km long topped by 30 atolls, 2 of which are inhabited.
Day 4. Tuesday. MANIHIKI (BLD)
Travel by boat to an islet in the lagoon to learn about seeding pearls with swimming and snorkelling time around the pearl beds. Later try your hand at the outrigger canoes and fishing, and visit the fish traps and bird sanctuary. For bird watchers and fishers we will arrange special activities for you.
Day 5. Wednesday. MANIHIKI (BLD)
The day is free to relax in the lagoon, visit the local school and meet the people
RAKAHANGA Two hours by boat north of Manihiki lies the island of Rakahanga. Subject to weather, a day cruise may be available for extra cost.
Day 6. Thursday. MANIHIKI – PUKAPUKA (BLD)
Rejoin our jet for the 1 hour flight to Pukapuka and enjoy a 1 hour cruise across the spectacular lagoon to the main village of Wale. This is a fascinating island and community. This afternoon we meet the local people including visiting the local school and explore the main village. Stay in local bungalows - col;d water taps for showers.
Day 7. Friday. PUKAPUKA - RAROTONGA. (BLD)
Cruise the lagoon stopping off at remote motu's (islets) on the reef, seeing the main entry passage and some of the massive bird life including a stopover at one bird sanctuary as well as meeting the local people. Mid afternoon we depart for the 2 hour 12 minute flight back to Rarotonga. In clear weather we will see spectacular views of Tema Reef, Nassau Island, and Suwarrow Island where hermit Tom Neale lived his solitary existence. Subject to weather and time we may overfly unique Palmerston island also. Transfer on arrival back in Rarotonga to the Pacific Resort. Farewell dinner
Sunday 29 July. RAROTONGA DEPART (B)
Transfer to the airport for departure
Projected tour cost per person Share twin $9,600 Single room $10,800
Tour cost includes:
** Arrival and departure transfers in Rarotonga, Manihiki, and Pukapuka
** All travel by charter jet from Rarotonga to Manihiki, Pukapuka, and return to Rarotonga
** 3 nights accommodation and breakfast at Pacific Resort
** 4 nights accommodation on Manihiki and Pukapuka in local bungalows. All meals provided.
** All visits and activities on Manihiki and Pukapuka except Rakahanga cruise.