According to indexdotcom, the Cook Islands are an independent island nation in the southwestern Pacific and belong to Polynesia, as the islands in the central Pacific are collectively called. The Cook Islands are roughly halfway between the islands of American Samoa and Tahiti (French Polynesia ). The Cook Islands is administratively in “free association” with New Zealand and covers a total area of 236 square kilometers. The Cook Islands are scattered over an expanse of water about a third of the land area of North America. Almost all of the approximately 18,000 residents on the Cook Islands are Cook Islands Maori. The capital of the archipelago is Avarua on the island of Rarotonga.
Of the total of 15 islands that their namesake, Captain James Cook, once discovered, with the exception of Rarotonga, only twelve are inhabited. The Cook Islands are a beautiful sight with their white beaches, blue lagoons and lush vegetation. They are divided into a southern group of islands with the most important island Rarotonga and the islets or groups Aitutaki, Atiu, Mangaia, Manuae, Mauke, Mitiaro, Palmerston and Takutea. The northern archipelago consists of the islands of Manihiki, Nassau, Penrhyn, Pukapuka, Rakahanga and Suwarrow. While some of the islands because of their barrierlow coral reefs are very difficult to access, the others offer the already mentioned paradisiacal landscape and are overgrown with coconut palms, pisang and breadfruit trees. The archipelago to the north consists of coral atolls with an outer reef that surrounds a lagoon.
Cook Islands – key data
Area: 236 km²
Population: 11,124 residents (July 2011 estimate, CIA). Cook Island Maori (Polynesians) 87.7%, partly Cook Island Maori 5.8%, others 6.5% (2001 census)
Population density: 47 residents per km²
Population growth: -3.2% per year (2011, CIA). The second highest percentage population decline in the world. The highest value is reached in the Northern Mariana Islands.
Capital: Avarua (5,445 residents, 2006)
Highest point: Te Manga, 652 m
Lowest point: Pacific Ocean, 0 m
Form of government:The Cook Islands have been independent and self-governing since 1965, but the residents also opted for “Free Association with New Zealand”. New Zealand takes on security and foreign policy in consultation with the Cook Islands. The Constitution of the Cook Islands dates from 1965, the last constitutional amendment was made in 1991. The Cook Islands Parliament consists of 25 members. The House of Ariki has an advisory role.
Administrative structure: 10 island councils (Aitutaki, Mangaia, Atiu, Ma’uke, Mitiaro, Manihiki, Penrhyn, Rakahanga, Pukapuka and Palmerston)
Head of State: Queen Elizabeth II (since February 6, 1952), represented by Sir Frederick Tutu Goodwin (since February 9, 2001)
Head of Government: Prime Minister Henry Puna, since November 30, 2010
Language: English and Rarotonga (Maori).
Religion: Cook Islands Christian Church 55.9%, Roman Catholic 16.8%, Seventh-Day Adventists 7.9%, Church of Latter Day Saints 3.8%, other Protestants 5.8%, others 4.2%, no information 2.6%, no religion 3% (2001 census)
Local time: CET – 11 a.m.
There is no change between summer and winter time in the Cook Islands.
The time difference to Central Europe is in winter – 11 h and in summer – 12 h.
International phone code: +682
Internet code:.ck Mains
Voltage: 220 V, 50 Hz
Best travel time for the Cook Islands
The best time to travel to the Cook Islands is, similar to other states in the Pacific, in the middle of the dry season. The months June to August are particularly recommended. The tropical sultriness will be cushioned somewhat by winds and an average of “only” 25 ° C will be reached. The precipitation is then also limited and the sun shines from a cloudless sky for most of the day.
On the other hand, vacationers should refrain from traveling to the Cook Islands in the months of November to April. The humidity and the heat are then higher, it rains a lot and mosquitoes disturb the holiday fun. In addition, during this phase there is a risk that hurricanes will hit the Cook Islands.