So, last year I was lucky enough to be treated by one of our wholesalers, The Infinity Group, to an amazing trip to the Cook Islands alongside a few other travel agents. Having never really heard much about the Cook Islands besides its amazing lagoon waters and coconut trees, I was so excited to be travelling to a destination that I could learn so much about. Looking through photos on google, I started thinking this place cannot be real… nothing looks that good they have to be photoshopped. Boy was I in for a
Stepping off the Air New Zealand plane I knew I was immediately in paradise. The mountains were covered in lush greenery, I was surrounded by coconut trees, even the local man sitting on top of the carousel inside the airport playing his ukelele sets the tone with his out of tune island style music. I couldn’t help but instantly feel relaxed. I didn’t need to question the temperature because as soon as my hair felt the humidity in the wind, it sprung to life in the form of unmanageable frizzy curls.
Driving down the streets in Rarotonga I soon realised how relatively untouched by tourism it is, or that it is really just starting to grow. Big resorts line the golden beachfronts which were met by the crystal blue lapping waves. Every time we walked into a room, were picked up by our driver or even just walking down the street, I found I would be met by a gracious smile and the words “Kia Orana”. The people in the Cook Islands are so humble and I soon realised that they ran on a very different time to the rest of the world… Island time. Once I got used to that concept (which for someone who struggles with being late to anything is very difficult!) I found it very easy to be swept up in Island life.
Despite being in awe at how beautiful this island was, I was consistently told by others in my group that the best was yet to come. After a very short but nerve racking flight on a 20 seater plane, I realised instantly what they meant. Aitutaki is the paradise within paradise. At the beginning of this post I made note and I repeat ‘nothing looks that good they have to be photoshopped‘ when referring to photos of the islands. I was so wrong. This, and I am sure of it, is the one place on the planet that you can take a photo and it actually look like the picture, as if you can climb inside your lense and it were reality. The water is really that blue and the sand is just that amazing white gold, you almost have to pinch yourself to know that you aren’t dreaming. Just to put it in perspective for any doubters, my photos were all taken on my iphone 5 and HAVE NOT been edited.
I actually cannot describe to you the beauty of the Cook islands, because nothing would do it justice. Hands down, the most beautiful place I have been to to date. Don’t believe me? Well, you will just have to book a flight and make that call for yourselves…
Check out: A Guide to the Cook Islands Guide to Staying in the Cook Islands A Cook Islands Bucket List
“Take only memories, leave only footsteps”