On the Coral Route
The Cook Islands, made up of fifteen islands with strong ties to New Zealand, have been a tourist destination since the 1950s.
The result of the irrepressible force of ancient volcanoes, they mostly consist of paradisiacal coral atolls that protect tranquil lagoons. Some of the islands are so small, such as Takutea or Suwarrow, which they can only be protected nature reserves, uninhabited or almost; others are large enough to accommodate thousands of people, although many emigrated to New Zealand during the Twentieth century.
The MSC World Cruise stops at Rarotonga, the largest and most populated island, home to the capital of the Cook Islands: Avarua.
Aitutaki is one of the dream islands where hundreds of newlyweds decide to spend their honeymoons, or even marry there. Palm trees, turquoise water and white sand: the Cook Islands are the stuff that dreams are made of. Although known and colonised by people coming from Asia hundreds of years before the arrival of European navigators, these islands are named after the British Explorer James Cook, who visited them aboard two sailing ships during the 18th century.