Nick & Gill's Round the World Trip 2006/7 travel blog

Gill enjoying a cocktail on arrival at our hotel

Main street in Avarua, capital of Rarotonga

Nick shows off his 'Hawaiian' shirt

Local getting some coconuts from tree

Kayak trip to island in Muri lagoon, our hotel in background

Nick & Gill, Muri lagoon and our hotel in background

Gill relaxing in Muri lagoon

Nick snorkelling

Gill having another cocktail while paddling in Muri lagoon

RAROTONGA, COOK ISLANDS - Sunday 18th February to Thursday 22nd (Days 114-118)

Although it is only a 4 hour flight from Auckland to Rarotonga, the capital island of the Cook Islands, it involves crossing the international date line. As a result although we took off from Auckland on Monday morning, we arrived in Rarotonga on Sunday afternoon, thus enjoying Sunday 18th February twice! (and having to pay for accommodation twice for the same night!!)

We arrived to a steamy Rarotonga (population 9000, 20 miles in circumference) to the sound of a chap singing with a ukulele in the airport (well shack actually), and a garland of flowers plonked over our necks. Then it was off to our hotel, the Muri Beach Club hotel, where we were welcomed with a cocktail (our original choice of hotel had decided to start some renovations), but what a great hotel it turned out to be. Located on the stunning Muri beach lagoon, we had a deluxe beachfront room, and as its name suggests it was right on the beach. The hotel restaurant was superb, and the pre-dinner cocktails at the bar were excellent.

Our plan was to spend the next 4 days relaxing, sunbathing, and reading. Although we were able to relax and read, the weather Gods weren't kind to us (only the second time on the whole 4 month trip, the other being in Melbourne over Christmas), and on the Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday it was overcast and ocassionally rainy (well the island is extremely green afterall). We did manage to take a trip to 'town', we were actually given a lift there by a local as we waited for the bus!

However, on our last day the sun came out and the whole place was transformed. If you imagine what a South Pacific Island should look like, golden palm fringed beach, turquoise lagoon, lush vegetation, exotic birds, well thats what Rarotonga is like.

Gill and I took a kayak across the lagoon to a small island and had a quick walk around it. I did some great snorkelling to and from the island, during which I was attacked by a trigger fish a couple of times (something to do with the mating season I was told?).

We both just didn't want to leave, this was paradise, a great place to chill out. THIS IS A MUST DO!!

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