Top Ten Cook Islands Attractions

Top Ten Cook Islands Attractions

The Cook Islands is a self-governing parliamentary democracy in the South Pacific Ocean in free association with New Zealand. The 15 small islands have a total land area of 240 square km (92.7 square mi), but the Cook Islands Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) covers 1,800,000 square km (690,000 square mi) of ocean. The main population centers are on the island of Rarotonga (14,153 in 2006), where there is an international airport. There is a much larger population of Cook Islanders in New Zealand, particularly the North Island. In the 2006 census, 58,008 self-identified as being of ethnic Cook Island Māori descent. With about 100,000 visitors travelling to the islands in the 2010-11 financial year, tourism is the country’s main industry, and the leading element of the economy, far ahead of offshore banking, pearls, and marine and fruit exports. Defense and foreign affairs are the responsibility of New Zealand, in consultation with the Cook Islands. In recent times, the Cook Islands have adopted an increasingly independent foreign policy. Although Cook Islanders are citizens of New Zealand, they have the status of Cook Islands nationals, which is not given to other New Zealand citizens.

  1. Rarotonga

    Description:
    Links: Top 100 Beaches, Top Ten Oceanic Beaches,
  2. Aitutaki

    Aitutaki, also traditionally known as Araura, Ararau and Utataki, is one of the Cook Islands, north of Rarotonga. It has a population of approximately 2,000. Aitutaki is the 2nd most visited island of the Cook Islands. The capital (main village) is Arutanga (Arutunga) on the west side.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aitutaki,
  3. Mangaia

    Mangaia (traditionally known as Auau Enua, which means terraced) is the most southerly of the Cook Islands and the 2nd largest, after Rarotonga.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mangaia,
  4. Atiu

    Atiu, also known as Enuamanu (meaning land of the birds), is an island lying at 187 km to the northeast of Rarotonga, in the Southern Islands group of the Cook Islands Archipelago.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atiu,
  5. Mauke

    Mauke (from ma uke, “Uke’s Land”; also known as Akatokamanava) is a raised atoll island, the eastern most of the Cook Islands.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ma%27uke,
  6. Mitiaro

    Mitiaro, the 4th island in the Cook Islands group, is of volcanic origin. Standing in water 14,750 feet deep (4,500 m) it is four miles (6.4 km) across at its widest point.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitiaro,
  7. Manihiki

    Manihiki is an island in the Cook Islands known as the Island of Pearls. It is a triangular atoll 1,160 km (720 mi) north of Rarotonga.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manihiki,
  8. Penrhyn

    Penrhyn (also called Tongareva, Mangarongaro, Hararanga and Te Pitaka) is the most remote and largest atoll of the 15 Cook Islands in the south Pacific Ocean.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Penrhyn_Island,
  9. Rakahanga

    Rakahanga, part of the Cook Islands in the central-southern Pacific Ocean, is one of the most unspoiled places on earth. The atoll is 1,248 kmfrom the Cook Islands capital, Rarotonga and lies 1,111 km from the equator. Its nearest neighbor is Manihiki which is just 44 km away.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rakahanga,
  10. Pukapuka

    Pukapuka is a coral atoll in the Cook Islands in the Pacific Ocean, with three small islets threaded on a reef that encloses a beautifully clear lagoon. It is the most remote island of the Cook Islands, situated about 1,140 km northwest of Rarotonga. It is a triangular atoll with three islets comprising little more than 3 square km of land area. On this small island an ancient culture and distinct language has been maintained over many centuries. In the 1990’s Japanese archaeologists discovered evidence of human settlement approximately 2,000 years ago. Pukapuka’s closest prehistoric associations appear to be with Samoa and other islands to the west. The traditional name for the atoll was Te Ulu-o-Te-Watu (‘the head of the stone’), and the northern islet where the people normally reside is affectionately known as Wale (Home).
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pukapuka,
  11. Palmerston Island

    Palmerston Island is a coral atoll in the Cook Islands in the Pacific Ocean about 500 km northwest of Rarotonga. It was discovered by James Cook on June 16, 1774.
    Links: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palmerston_Island,
  12. Links: Top Ten Islands, Top Ten Oceanic Islands, Top 100 Beaches, Top Ten Oceanic Beaches, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cook_Islands,