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The Islands are full of fascinating stories and facts.  Here are just a few which I hope you'll not only find interesting, but will encourage you to explore this site and the Islands themselves.  All links open in a new tab or window
Deserted Manuae
Deserted Manuae was the first island to be discovered by Captain Cook
Access is restricted but you can click to visit

Palmerston's main road
Palmerston is the only one of the Cook Islands that Captain James Cook set foot on himself
Explore an island populated by the descendants of one Englishman
Aitutaki from the air
Aitutaki was discovered accidentally by Captain William Bligh 18 days before the mutiny on his ship, The Bounty
Find out more about Bligh's discovery
Discover Aitutaki for yourself
Von Kurstenburg
The Cook Islands were given their name by a famous Russian explorer and map maker, Adam Johann Von Krusenstern.  They were known before that as the Hervey Islands
Start exploring the Islands and this site

Seen from the air, Atiu's five villages form the shape of a stick man
Take a closer look at Atiu
Mangaia kingfisher
The Mangaia kingfisher is found nowhere else in the world…​and it doesn't eat fish
Fish for more about Mangaia

Atiu from the air
Suwarrow shoreline
Treasure buried on Suwarrow in 1876 has never been  found because an "x marks the spot" map was lost
Dig up more about Suwarrow
Mitiaro main road
Legend says the gods drew Mitiaro up from the depths of the ocean and fairies made it habitable with soil from nearby Atiu and Mauke
Discover the Mitiaro magic

Mauke's divided church
A church at the centre of Mauke was literally divided down the middle when it was built because locals couldn't agree how to decorate it
Find the "divided church" in the garden of the Islands

Go getting gal bomber on Rarotonga
Penrhyn (aka Tongareva) has an airfield thanks to American GIs who built it as part of an alternative supply route from Hawaii to Australia and New Zealand during World War II.  And the remains this bomber (left) lie in the undergrowth
Explore Penryhn and learn about the ill fated bomber from the pilot's son

Palm tree
Rugged Mangaia
No buildings in the Islands can be taller than the tallest palm tree because the first Prime Minister made that the law
Creating a nation

At 18 million years old, Mangaia is the oldest island in the Pacific and boasts the world's largest banyan tree
Step back in  time
Takutea surf
According to islanders on neighbouring Atiu, surfers can enjoy 400 metre wide rides off  desertedTakutea
Surf over to Takutea

Wrecked ship on Nassau Cook Islands
The remains of a wrecked cargo ship lie rusting among the palm trees in the middle of Nassau which is described as a tiny garden of Eden
Explore Nassau

Kirikiti bats
Islanders on Pukapuka play their own form of cricket with a three sided bat (above) and 20-40 players. Games last an indefinite number of days
Bowl over to Pukapuka
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