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The ultimate luxury honeymoon: Cook Islands and New Zealand

The perfect luxury honeymoon getaway awaits; explore the best of New Zealand in combination with its tropical neighbour in the South Pacific – the Cook Islands. Combining two iconic and treasured travel destinations promises the perfect romantic escape, drenched in luxury, offering the combination of two of the most picturesque locations in the world. New Zealand and Rarotonga each have their own unique cultural identity, but it is said that their culture stemmed from one voyage with Maori migrations to New Zealand beginning from Rarotonga as early as the 5th century AD.

The Cook Islands in the South Pacific Ocean are the most stunning holiday destination for family fun, a romantic escape or a getaway- with emerging luxury accommodations, restaurants and activities. The Cook Islands are comprised of 15 islands, plotted in close proximity to one another- each offering something unique and beautiful to its guests. New Zealand is only a short flight away and would conclude the honeymoon flawlessly, combining romantic experiences and inspiring scenery.

In the last year, accessibility to the Cook Islands has improved, now if you are coming from the United States, flights to Rarotonga are available from Honolulu, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles and New York. Now travel to the Cook Islands is much more approachable and should be more widely known, paradise is now easier to reach!

The Cook Islands

You would start your journey arriving in Rarotonga, Cook Islands, which offer an array of experiences and destinations to suit every traveller’s interests. Here is a look into a few experiences and destinations that are a must see.


Rarotonga is one of the most well-known Islands within the Cook Islands, offering a multitude of luxury 5-star beach resorts,  scattered along the sandy coastline. Rarotonga is the perfect place to explore the local culture, visit the Sunday markets, and explore the diverse terrain, offering a mixture of lush bush and blue sandy beaches.


  • Punanga Nui Market and Muri night markets- experience authentic local culture and taste your way through Rarotonga.
  • Experience luxury – stay in one of the many 5-star luxury beachfront resorts Rarotonga offers.

Aitutaki Island

Aitutaki Island is one of the Islands that make up the Cook Islands, and is surrounded by reef, and is home to the iconic lagoon. The destination is perfect for those travellers looking to spend time in the water, with snorkelling, kite surfing, lagoon cruises and more; this island promises an exciting combination of thrill and tropical relaxation. 


  • Explore the lagoon: The iconic lagoon has some of the bluest waters and white sands, and promises the ultimate tropical experience. Take a luxury private guided tour through the lagoon for the ultimate experience, and finish the day sunbathing on the pristine white sand.
  • Snorkel in a marine reserve: Experience some of the best snorkelling in a protected marine reserve, the sealife is thriving and vibrant.

Atiu Island is also known as Island of the birds, home to an abundance of treasured wildlife. The island is known for being perfect for nature lovers and adventure seekers, offering visitors a unique opportunity to explore ancient limestone caves.


  • Bird watching: The island is home to the rare Kokako bird, and Aitu Swiftlet, and offers a unique opportunity to experience local wildlife up close.
  • Cave tours: Atiu is home to ancient limestone caves, which draw in travellers worldwide, most of which are familiar with Anatakitaki cave, where guests can see the local wildlife and witness the impressive ecosystem that the caves host.

A short flight to New Zealand

Now, only a four hour flight away, arrive in central Otago, New Zealand’s South Island, home to the iconic Queenstown, Wanaka and Cromwell. Central Otago is renowned for its romantic setting, and picturesque landscapes; offering an abundance of experiences and activities to suit every tourist.

Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown is celebrated for being the adventure capital of New Zealand, and is known to be one of the most stunning destinations in the country, built around Lake Wakatipu and surrounded by mountain ranges such as the Remarkables and Walter Peak.


  • Thrill seekers this is the place for you, Queenstown is known to be the adventure capital of New Zealand, and there is no end to what is on offer. Fancy whitewater rafting, bungy jumping, ziplining, or skydiving? Queenstown has it all.
  • Take a trip over Earnslaw Burn by heli and view active glaciers, dramatic waterfalls and the slopes of the mountain ranges, this is truly a once in a lifetime experience that can not be skipped.
  • Beyond adventure, Queenstown offers an array of slower paced activities such as a cruise through the Milford Sounds, or exploring nearby trails such as the Arrowtown River trail.

Wanaka, New Zealand

Wanaka is known to be a nature lovers paradise here in New Zealand, attracting people from all over the world. Wanaka is the perfect destination for hiking, skiing, wine tastings, and experiencing local charm.


  • Stargazing – the night sky is a sight to see, however this location offers some of the darkest skies in the world, and you may even get the chance to witness the Aurora Australis.
  • Hiking and biking: Wanaka offers an array of iconic hiking and biking experiences, such as Haast Pass, Beacon Point and the Glendhu Bay track.

Fiordland, New Zealand

Fiordland is known to be the home to some of the most dramatic and awe-inspiring scenarios in the world, towering mountain ranges, deep valleys and home to a thriving biodiverse rainforest- the only landscape of its kind in the world, it is a must see for all travellers to New Zealand.


  • Take a cruise through the fiords by kayak, experience tranquillity like no other, and paddle your way through the etched water paths created by the mountain ranges.
  • Dusky and Doubtful Sound by sky; take a heli trip through the sounds. These are the largest and most renowned fiords that will take your breath away, pledging an unforgettable experience.

The combination of the tropical Cook Islands with the stunning scenic South Island of New Zealand promises the perfect honeymoon and luxury travel experience. With new accessible flights departing from the US, this honeymoon can be more than just a dream. Tell us about your honeymoon, we would love to hear some of your adventures.

Veronika Vermeulen

Veronika Vermeulen is Director of Aroha New Zealand Tours Ltd. Aroha New Zealand Tours Ltd. has been offering 100% tailored journeys and private guided luxury experiences in New Zealand since 2000.

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  1. I’m going to have to share this one with my boyfriend, though he’s yet to propose and we have been living together for 8 years.

  2. I had to do a Google search to find out where the Cook Islands are. The answer is a long way from the UK.

    If you’re going to travel all the way to New Zealand from London then you might as well take in somewhere like The Cook Islands as well.

  3. When I did my Gap Year, I toyed with calling in on The Cook Islands. I did a lot of research and I really wanted to visit the islands. The trouble was that back then the islands were difficult to get to.

  4. We’re both hoping to retire in 2025 and thinking about going on an epic adventure. New Zealand plus Ghe Cook Islands could be that epic adventure.

  5. Wish I was there, but already spent my budget on a personal floating submarine boat. Nothin fancy but expensive as a car

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