Cook Islands Hotels

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  • catalysta profile photo catalysta
  • Reviews: 475

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Rarotonga Backpackers: Voted one of the best in the world for backpackers

I can't word it better than they do:
"With the concept and design of our complex we have tried to give the backpacker a higher quality of budget accommodation by creating a feeling of spaciousness with all our rooms, i.e. high ceiling, open plan living and large decking areas, but keeping "Budget Price" in mind. "

Choose between the self-contained bungalow with private kitchen, sun deck & bathroom, a range of private rooms, or the dormitory style housing. They offer FREE airport pick-up as well, so you really can't beat it!
Prices run from NZ$20 to NZ$70, you do the math.

  • Opinion of Price: least expensive
  • Related to: Backpacking, Beaches
  • Written August 3, 2004
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Raro Backpackers Hotel


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  • bijo69 profile photo bijo69
  • Reviews: 943

3 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Tom's Beach cottage: nice guesthouse

Friendly guesthouse near shops with a beautiful beach. Unfortunately the water is a bit shallow for swimming, but you get great sunsets.
Rooms are very basic with fan. Bathrooms are shared and the hot water supply isn't very reliable.
A single was 32NZ$/per night in 2004.

  • Opinion of Price: less expensive than average
  • Related to: Backpacking, Budget Travel
  • Written April 17, 2004
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Aitutaki Sunset


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  • catalysta profile photo catalysta
  • Reviews: 475

4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

Various: Island Hopper Gives Great Links!

For lots of specific information about other accommodations, take a look at the Island Hopper Vacations website (see link below). They provide not only hotels & resorts, but longer term rentals, and a section with listings for budget & backpacker accommodations as well. There are also links for eco tours, birdwatching, cruising, deep seas fishing, & just about anything else you may wish to check out.
The people in their office in Avarua are great, very helpful & friendly even if you aren't there to purchase a tour of any kind.

  • Opinion of Price: N/A
  • Related to: Diving and Snorkeling, Romantic Travel and Honeymoons, Beaches
  • Written April 24, 2005
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Huts on Aitutaki


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  • catalysta profile photo catalysta
  • Reviews: 475

4 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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The Rarotongan Beach Resort

I got a fantastic deal with Canada 3000 on staying here for 12 nights, but unfortunately that tour outfit was a casualty of 9/11. Ordinarily I choose much smaller & more intimate inns or B&B's than this. It is a full resort, with all the amenities, and everything is priced accordingly.

So I strolled down the road or motor-scootered elsewhere for meals. In exploring further, I decided I'd likely consider Muri Beachcomber, if I were to go again (which I'd like to do!).

The resort is located in a great spot on Aroa Beach, with excellent snorkeling right outside your door. If you do stay there, it's well worth upgrading to a beachfront room , I was so glad I did. Sleep with your patio doors open, and let the sound of waves rhythmically pounding the reef and palm fronds rustling lull you to sleep.

The Rarotongan is also reknowned for its Wednesday & Saturday night traditional island Umukai Feast, a fabulous array of foods cooked in an "umu", or underground oven. Stuff yourself silly while you watch the erotic & enregetic traditional Cook Island dancers.

  • Opinion of Price: more expensive than average
  • Related to: Beaches, Diving and Snorkeling, Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
  • Written November 14, 2003
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The patio at the Rarotongan


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  • bijo69 profile photo bijo69
  • Reviews: 943

4 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Maiana Guesthouse: Great hostel

Nice and clean guesthouse with friendly owners. Fresh mangos and bananas for breakfast!
You can choose between different rooms from single to 6-bed-dorm.
The beautiful beach is just across the road. You can hire snorkelling gear from the guesthouse or the caf? next door.
The bus-stop is infront of the caf? aswell.

  • Opinion of Price: least expensive
  • Related to: Backpacking, Budget Travel
  • Written March 31, 2004
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Beach across the road from Maiana


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  • worldkiwi profile photo worldkiwi
  • Reviews: 1041

3 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Tom's Beach Cottage.: Budget accommodation on Aitutaki.

We found this place on the net and chose it because we were amazed at the expensive accommodation on Aitutaki. This is definitely a backpackers/budget traveller's choice. The house has several rooms, two basic bathrooms, and a small kitchen. There is a large common room and the house fronts a beach.
The beach is not that great for swimming, and is not very picturesque, considering the travel brochure images one has of Aitutaki. A channel for boats in the middle of the beach is murky and the area around it smells of dead fish.
However, the accommodation was very clean and perfectly adequate for us. Tom and Tareta (his daughter) are very friendly and helpful. It is just a short 10-15 minute walk to Arutanga, where the shops and Post Office are. There are also stores close by for basic needs. The only problem with being on the west side of the island is that you need transport to get to O'otu Beach and the lagoon.
The nightly rate for a room was $48 ($24 pp when shared by two). There are two separate bungalows that each sleep 2 people.

Tom will pick you up and take you to the airport for $8.

  • Opinion of Price: less expensive than average
  • Related to: Backpacking, Budget Travel
  • Written October 8, 2005
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Tom's Beach Cottage, Amuri, Aitutaki.


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  • easterntrekker profile photo easterntrekker
  • Reviews: 2084

3 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Shangri-La: Shangri-La ...a quiet place to stay

We stayed 8 days and were pleased with our cottage. It was was very clean and well layed out with a refrigerator and a couple of burners for simple meals.

It was a pretty good value if you book and pay in advance.
None of the cottages are ocean front but the property boarders the beach.

It's not a very energetic type of hotel and it wouldn't win an award for beautiful landscaping...but if you are looking for a clean , convenient hotel on Muri beach ..this is a good bet.

There is air conditioning and a whirl pool tub. And a pool . No restuarant but there are several close by.

  • Opinion of Price: less expensive than average
  • Related to: Budget Travel, Women's Travel, Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
  • Written December 11, 2006
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  • worldkiwi profile photo worldkiwi
  • Reviews: 1041

4 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Rarotonga Backpackers Beach Houses: Home away from home!

In 2005, seven of us rented two beach houses from Rarotonga Backpackers, which were located right on the beach on the western side of Rarotonga. The houses are very private and have every facility you need for a stay. Each house had a well equipped kitchen, a laundry, good size bedrooms, and bathrooms.
The beach in front of the houses is a long white stretch of soft coral sand. In front of the houses it is a little too shallow for swimming, but just 100 metres south there is a lovely swimming spot. You can watch the sunset at night from your porch, or doze in a hammock. One bonus for us was seeing humpback whales just beyond the reef! They regularly passed by at about lunch time each day. Once I even saw one do a back-flip!
There is a small shop across the road and you can catch the bus from the end of the driveway.

  • Opinion of Price: about average
  • Related to: Family Travel, Budget Travel
  • Written October 7, 2005
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The smaller of the two beachfront houses.


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  • worldkiwi profile photo worldkiwi
  • Reviews: 1041

4 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Edgewater Resort.: A pleasant place for a short stay.

On our last night in the Cook Islands we decided to splash out a bit and stay in a resort. The Edgewater had been recommended to us as a more affordable option. From the driveway, the resort looks a bit like a concrete jungle and seemed a bit dated and faded and certainly the pool and bar area is showing its age. However, the northern wing is very new and the room we got was well presented and modern. The staff here are super friendly and helpful and I have to mention the wonderful Emmy at reception who helped us out. We ended up with a large room right on the beach, with the biggest bathroom I have ever had in a hotel of any kind! Being right on the beach was very nice, though the beach isn't anything to rave about. Being quite a steep beach here there are fine views though out across the reef.
While we were sitting around on the beach in the afternoon, there was a wedding. Apparently there were 7 there that week. The Edgewater does special wedding packages and the weddings themselves are quite cool to watch. The bride is carried out to the beach on a litter decorated with palm leaves by four Cook Islanders and escorted by a sort of Cook Islands herald with a spear and in traditional costume.

  • Opinion of Price: more expensive than average
  • Related to: Spa and Resort
  • Written October 8, 2005
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The beachfront at the Edgewater Resort

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  • bijo69 profile photo bijo69
  • Reviews: 943

3 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Vara's Beach House: Party Place

It's fine if you want to party all night long, otherwise it's too noisy. Not the cleanest bathrooms and kitchen...

Beautiful veranda!

  • Opinion of Price: least expensive
  • Related to: Backpacking, Budget Travel
  • Written April 23, 2004
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Beach at Vara's


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  • easterntrekker profile photo easterntrekker
  • Reviews: 2084

3 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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Muri Beachcomber: Muri Beachcomber- right on the beach

What this hotel lacked in charm in made up for in its location . These condo units are right on the beach . It has a nice restaurant too. We really like grill night!! The seaview units have a full kitchen and great view. Children over 12 are welcome ...and rooms are suitable for three
Very friendly staff.

There is a lounge available with a micro wave refridgerator . Very convenient if you want to hand out after check out ...if you have a late flight. They even have a shower available!!

  • Opinion of Price: about average
  • Related to: Family Travel, School Holidays, Seniors
  • Written December 11, 2006
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  • easterntrekker profile photo easterntrekker
  • Reviews: 2084

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Rarotongan Beach Resort: Rarotongan Beach Resort - A touch of luxury

This is a fabulous resort , with 156 rooms. It's really beautiful with lots of thatched roofs...and the wonderful sands of Aroa Beach on the south western tip of Rarotonga.
It's a little pricey though...for the Cook Islands!!

We went there for island night and it was the best!! Food is terrific.

  • Opinion of Price: most expensive
  • Related to: Romantic Travel and Honeymoons, Seniors, Spa and Resort
  • Written December 11, 2006
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  • easterntrekker profile photo easterntrekker
  • Reviews: 2084

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Aroko Bungalows: Aroko Bungalows- one of the best values

These are a really good value . The are well maintained and have a nice wide deck looking over the lagoon . The only thing you have a bout a 15 minute walk to the actual beach . Keep in mind it is a very pleasant walk however...
There are a dozen or so little cottages in all...looked like the were working on one when we were there. Fans only!

  • Opinion of Price: least expensive
  • Related to: Family Travel, Budget Travel, School Holidays
  • Written December 11, 2006
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  • emmicat profile photo emmicat
  • Reviews: 16

4 out of 5 starsUser Rating

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An Alternate Option

There are a multitude of nice, small resorts from basic to luxury on Rarotonga but there are also numerous holiday homes to rent by the week. These also range from basic to luxurious but some good deals can be had especially if you're travelling with a family or other people. A two bedroom house located on the beach with a full kitchen can be had for $1000NZ + per week. Houses that are not on the beach, which is never more than a 5 to 10 minute walk away, can be had for half the price. My place was a new two bedroom bungalow up the road from a beautiful swimming beach and cost $575NZ a week. Full cooking facilities, TV, DVD player, etc, Nice. I've stayed in about 6 or 7 different places and have only been disappointed with my choice once.

The most wonderful thing about any accomodation on Rarotonga is that NOTHING is far from anything - the island is 32 miles around!

  • Opinion of Price: less expensive than average
  • Related to: Romantic Travel and Honeymoons, Budget Travel, Family Travel
  • Written June 11, 2006
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Road (goat trail) to my bungalow

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  • calbears91 profile photo calbears91
  • Reviews: 3

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Club Rara: Rarotonga

My wife and I stayed last year at Club Raro. We arrived very early in the morning due to the flight being delayed (Aloha Airlines). The Raro tours shuttle from the airport took us to the hotel charging us about 20NZD for both my wife and I. The only problem was waiting for the tour bus to fill before they left. There were no cabs at 3:00 am. The security guards let us in. The lobby is open and breezy. There is a small restaurant that has a cooked breakfast in the morning. The pool is located in the middle of the resort and the bungalow surround the pool, and some stretch along the water. The water there is rocky, although I did see people snorkeling. We stayed in a waterfront bungalow.

The sound of the water crashing against the reef was mesmerizing. The room was clean, and simple. The bed was a queen, and the TV was a 19-inch with only 4 channels (Local Cook TV (not on much), CNN, Cartoon Network, French Movie Channel). The bathroom is large and clean.

  • Opinion of Price: more expensive than average
  • Related to: Beaches, Kayaking, Diving and Snorkeling
  • Written December 18, 2005
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Entrance to Club Raro

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