The sparkling waters and powder-white sands of the Cook Islands offer the perfect environment for a tropical escape, whether a honeymoon or dreamy couples' holiday. From colourful undersea worlds to green undulating volcanic landscapes, there is plenty for a pair of lovers to explore if they choose to escape for the ultimate romantic getaway in the idyllic Cook Islands.
Here, you will discover picture-perfect beaches, serene lagoons just perfect for a relaxing swim, and gin-clear waters teeming with sea creatures. Naturally, these beaches are one of the Cook Islands' best features, sprinkled with golden sand and warm, inviting ocean. Spend the days enjoying the view with the rustling of palm trees all around, sipping on coconut water and sinking your teeth into juicy tropical fruits. Watermelon, mango and pineapple, anyone?
Enjoy a romantic getaway in the Cook Islands
With the Cook Islands running on the NZ dollar, you are likely also to enjoy good value if you choose to indulge in one of the luxe villas available in Aitutaki and Rarotonga (in particular). You won't find the big glitzy chains here, but you will find one-off, unique and charming escapes just perfect for two – many of them open up directly onto your own slice of a picture-perfect beach.
Rarotonga is the main island and the nation's largest and a must for any couple on vacation in the Cooks (many honeymooners start their time here, moving on to experience as much of The Cook Islands as possible). To get the most out of your Cook Islands honeymoon or romantic getaway, be sure to drag yourself away from your romantic villa and explore the capital Rarotonga, a hub of culture and tradition. The best way to do this is to head straight to the police station, take a simple test and hand over $20 for your Cook Islands driving license.
Now it is time to hit the road – don't worry though, there's one road that hugs the coastline around the island so you won't get lost! From the main town of Avarua, you can drive the whole island in 45 minutes. If you don't want to drive a car or motor scooter, then check out local bus which runs regularly, clockwise and anti-clockwise, every day. While out and about, be sure to listen out for the sound of the mighty drum, the crack of the coconut shell and the joyful melody of ukuleles as you wander the streets. Look out for arts and crafts, such as basket weaving and wood carving, at the local markets and learn about the seafaring history of the nation before heading to the beach to indulge in relaxation.
Honeymooners or those on a couples' holiday must visit the enchanting island of Aitutaki. This picturesque atoll is the stuff of dreams with deserted beaches, bright turquoise water and tall swaying palms. The pace of life is notably relaxed, and you simply can't escape the air of romance around every corner. Try your hand at snorkelling in the pristine water with all manner of marine life swimming up to say hello. Tranquil lagoons always provide the perfect environment for a leisurely dip.
Make sure you linger on the beautiful shores until sunset, when you'll be treated to a stunning display of colours across the sky before you return to your luxurious island accommodation… Pure honeymoon bliss!
Aitutaki is also a wondrous place to witness some of the Cook Islands' traditions. Catch a thrilling show of fire dancing, drumming and song at the village of Vaipae, known as the Hollywood of the islands. Visit the CICC limestone coral rock church on a Sunday to hear the moving song of the congregation. All around this island you'll fall in love with the warmth and friendliness of the local people, eager to welcome you to their nation and share in their traditions and way of life. If we've still not convinced you of The Cook Islands' romantic appeal, consider that Aitutaki is unofficially called Honeymoon Island!
If that's not enough, you can stretch your legs at any time with a walk through verdant rainforest, tackling challenging peaks or leisurely trails leading to cascading waterfalls. Pack a picnic and enjoy the idyllic surrounds.
Why you'll love a Cook Islands holiday or honeymoon
This truly is paradise – a place where 'Island Time' dominates the pace of life, the water is eternally perfect to swim in, and the days hover at the idyllic 25 degree mark. With 15 beautiful islands in total, you're bound to find the perfect romantic escape where you can be completely at peace if you choose to spend your holiday or honeymoon in The Cook Islands.
Now all that's left for you to do is sit back, relax and follow the hypnotic call of the conch and visit the Cook Islands with your loved one.