Cook Islands Holidays, Events, Climate and Sightseeing

Cook Islands: Holidays, Events, Climate

There are a number of public holidays that do not have a fixed date, but are based on the location of Easter. Easter takes place on the first Sunday that follows the first full moon after the beginning of spring. Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, which ends on Holy Saturday, is 46 days before Holy Saturday. The date for Pentecost is then 50 days after Easter. The Corpus Christi festival is celebrated on the 2nd Thursday after Pentecost. All Saints’ Day is celebrated for Orthodox Christians on the 1st Sunday after Pentecost, but for Catholic Christians the date is fixed on November 1st.

Date Holiday
January 1 New Year
14th of February Valentine’s day
February March Polynesian Culture Festival, in Papeete, Place Vaite
5. March Arrival of the first missionaries
March April Easter
April 25 Anzac Day
May Ascension
23-25 May The arrival of the bounty is celebrated every two years.
Beginning. June Queens Birthday
beginning of August National Independence Day
beginning of September Fathers day
November 1 All Saints Day, Turama
November Armistice Day, Armistice Day
beginning of December National Flower Day
25 December Christmas

Source: Countryaah – Cook Islands Holidays

Cook Islands: Events

Date Events
January February
February March Polynesian Culture Festival, in Papeete, Place Vaite
March Te Mire Atu – competition
April Te Mira Kapa dance festival
May Te Mire Ura – Dancer of the Year
end of May Palmerston Gospel Day, public holiday in Palmerston
end of July Atiu Gospel Day, public holiday only on Atiu
end of July Mitiaro Gospel Day, public holiday only on Mitiaro
end of July Rarotonga Gospel Day, public holiday only on MRarotonga
July Te Maeva Nui celebration
Beginning of August National Independence Day
August Manihiki Gospel Day, public holiday only in Manihiki
End of October Aitutaki Gospel Day, public holiday only on Aitutaki
end of November Vaka Eiva, canoe festival
end of November International food festival
November Armistice Day, Armistice Day
beginning of December Pukapuka Gospel Day, public holiday only on Pukapuka

Cook Islands: Climate and Weather

The archipelago is located in the tropics and is surrounded by the Pacific. There is also a trade wind blowing there. This fact is largely responsible for the climate there. The rainy season lasts from November to April. The mean annual rainfall is z. B. on the island of Rarotonga around 2,000 mm. The highest precipitation falls in March with around 260 mm. Typhoons can be expected in the period from November to March.

By the way, climate is understood to mean long-term developments, whereas weather only means that over several days.

Climate table

Month Average number of rainy days Mean maximum temperatures in (°C) Mean minimum temperatures in (°C)
January 14-15 28-29 22-23
February 14-15 28-29 22-23
March 15-16 28-29 22-23
April 11-12 27-28 22-23
May 12-13 25-26 22-23
June 10-11 24-25 19-20
July 8-9 24-25 17-18
August 9-10 24-25 17-18
September 7-8 25-26 18-19
October 9-10 26-27 20-21
November 10-11 26-27 20-21
December 11-12 28-29 20-21

Cook Islands: Sightseeing

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

There are currently no UNESO world cultural or natural heritage sites on the Cook Islands. In addition, there are currently no proposals for inclusion in the UNESCO World Heritage List for the Cook Islands.


Avarua is the capital and largest city of the Cook Islands. However, Avarua only has about 5,500 residents. Almost every visitor comes to Avarua, because the city serves as a starting point for trips to all other islands. In the vicinity of the city is the Rarotonga International Airport, which brings visitors to the Cook Islands. There are supermarkets and two banks in town.

Museums and galleries

Cook Islands National Museum/ Rarotonga

A guided tour offers insights into traditional life in the fields of fishing, medicine, etc. on the islands.

Ministry of Marine Resources/Aitutaki

In the Ministry of Marine Resources the visitor can learn a lot about the underwater life in the lagoon. Baby turtles and clams can also be observed.

Beachcomber Contemporary Art/Rarotonga

The Art Gallery/Rarotonga

Church and cemetery

Cook Islands Christian Church

Avarua has a beautiful Protestant church from 1835. It was built from white coral blocks and looks like a small fortress in the middle of the surrounding cemetery.


The cemetery is opposite the church. Here you can also find the grave of the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands, Sir Albert Henry.

Marae Arai-Te-Tonga

Only stone ruins remain of what was once the island’s most important temple. This site is still considered sacred, so entering it is not encouraged.

University of the South Pacific

The University of the South Pacific was founded in 1968. Due to the geography of the South Pacific states, the university is spread over many locations. The University of the South Pacific is funded by 12 states, these are:

  • Cook Islands
  • Fiji Islands
  • Kiribati
  • Marshal Islands
  • Nauru
  • Niue
  • Solomon Islands
  • Samoa
  • Tokelau
  • Tonga
  • Tuvalu
  • Vanuatu

The main campus of the university is located in Suva, Fiji Islands. A total of around 16,000 students are currently studying at all branches. The University of the South Pacific offers the following degree programs:

  • Agricultural Sciences
  • Computer science
  • journalism
  • tourism
  • Social sciences
  • environmental Protection
  • Economics

Maire Nui Gardens

The Maire Nui Gardens on Rarotonga are the islands’ botanical gardens. The local flora can be observed here. The café in the park is also very nice and relaxing.

Natural beauties


In principle, each of the 15 islands forms its own natural beauty. But the island of Suwarrow should be mentioned in particular. It was discovered on September 17, 1814 by the crew of the Russian sailor “Suvorov”, after which it was named. It was called the most romantic island in the world by the wife of Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894), author of the novel “Treasure Island”. The island is a pure atoll. An atoll is a ring-shaped coral reef that surrounds a lagoon.

Black Rocks/Rarotonga

The cliffs got the name Black Rocks because they are made of basalt. They are located on the main road near the airport.

One-Foot Island/Aitutaki

The ” one-foot ” island with its beaches and the wonderful blue lagoon offers the perfect South Sea experience.

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