As the designer of tours and purveyor of travel adventures, I am in the unique position of not just arranging trips for myself, but also others, which is what led me to travel to the Cook Islands.
Why travel to the Cook Islands? Long story short I had to get from Tonga to the Solomon Islands, while killing a bit of time. I have also never been to Rarotonga, nor any of the other Cook Islands.
Is the Cook Islands a country then?
OK, so lets get the Big Kahuna out of the way. In my mind and the rules of YPT the Cook Islands is very much a country, much in the same way that Palau is.
Of course some people such as those of Every Passport Stamp will argue that it is just a mere part of New Zealand. This is because it is not in the United Nations. To these people North Korea would not have been a country until 1991 and Switzerland 1994.
And even leaving the semantics of what is a country lets look wt why people actually travel, or at least should. The Cook Islands might not you closer to your little 195 club, but you might not only enjoy the place, but also learn about their culture – rant over.
Travel to Cook Islands vibe
So, the Cook Islands is a lot of things, with paradise being among them. The beaches are mazing, you can snorkel, dive, drink and pretty much party like it is Hawaii. And in many ways it is similar to Hawaii, perhaps even being a Kiwi version you might say.
Thankfully though it is a shit tonne cheaper, and also has a much more relaxed and one would assume authentic feel to things. Alas I spent most of my time here sick, which shall go into a different post….
Street Food Rarotonga
So it turns out the Cook Islands and Rarotonga do actually have a street food scene encompassed by the touristy Mona Night Market. This consisted of three types of food, Pacific BBQ, Chinese and raw coconut shrimp.
This gave it some similarities with the Palau night market, but also unique enough to give a look. Rarotonga itself also has a plethora of local restaurants, as well as the obligatory Chinese ones.
This is not New Zealand and while it is certainly not my favoirite country, I am glad I added travel to the Cook Islands to my done pile.