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  # 1322778 11-Jun-2015 12:58
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I just flow in last night from a 11 day holiday in Raro.  Second time there.  Would definitely recommend it.  Very different to Fiji in that you are not stuck to one resort for your entire trip.  Very easy to get around the island as others have mentioned.

I had no issues with food prices at all.  Mains at one of their best restaurants (Tamarind House) are around NZ$22-32 or so.  The quality of the food was great.  They have a mexican restaurant and a Thai restaurant too (more family friendly) and the food was good at these places too.  We had a burger and fish and chips takeaway across the road from us and I must say that the cheeseburger I had ($7) was as tasty as any non gourmet burger I've had here in Auckland.

Food prices at the supermarkets there are very reasonable too, as long as you are intelligent enough to realise that it is a remote island and things like fresh milk are very expensive to get there hence their $19 per litre prices.

Some things are about the same price/slightly cheaper (petrol!!) and other things are considerably cheaper.  Take the 600ml Coke Zero I got from one of the supermarkets over there.  NZD$2.00 vs the NZD$4.19 here at Countdown.  Or $2.20 at one of their "corner shops" vs $4.40 I paid at a corner shop here in Auckland recently!

In summary, I would recommend Rarotonga as a Pacific Island holiday spot.

Feel free to PM me if you have any further specific questions.

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  # 1322792 11-Jun-2015 13:24
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joker97: Edgewater in Rarotonga is cheapest, or anywhere in Raro.


If you stay there make sure you ask for the 'fish bowl' cocktail. ha ha

 
 
 
 




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  # 1322797 11-Jun-2015 13:49
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dickytim:
networkn:
dickytim: Hawaii any day of the week!

Best of both worlds and not super expensive to get to.


We LOVE Hawaii, but it IS expensive the way we do it, considerably more so than GC, Fiji or Raro. We do that trip 18 monthly but wanted something to give us a break away in the middle. 

Hawaii is my favourite place in the world, the food is spectacular, it's just amazing. 

Intending to try for March there.



Yes I agree Hawaii is expensive, our next trip we will be staying to the Hilton Hawaiian village that is looking like $3000 for airfares and accommodation for 10 days.

But the airfares being around $1000 it is not so much more than other destinations, and you don't NEED to stay at the flashest place :)


We stay in Wailea, if you want a trip of a lifetime, then save your pennies and go there, it's quite simply the most amazing place. The condos we stay in are HUGE, with 180 degree views over the Ocean. In March you can see Whales from your balcony, breaching during mating season. My kids just went crazy for it even at only 2 and 3 years old. 

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  # 1322798 11-Jun-2015 13:50
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Raro food:

Steak - Albertos
Fish - The Moorings cafe - has to be tasted to be believed. Lunch there.
Waterline restaurant is good.
Tamarind = good.
Trader Jacks. Great to have a drink there while the sun sets.
The Islander - across the road from the airport is good.

Will think of others maybe...




My views (except when I am looking out their windows) are not those of my employer.

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  # 1322826 11-Jun-2015 15:00
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joker97: Edgewater in Rarotonga is cheapest, or anywhere in Raro.


Yep Cook Islands good.  Been there a couple of times.  Next choice is Vanuatu.  Didn't like Samoa though.. 




Regards,

Old3eyes


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  # 1324413 14-Jun-2015 13:09
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Got married in Raro few years back, stayed at the Rarotongan. Honey moon suite was great.

If I went again I'd stay at the adults only sister resort right next door to it called the sanctuary.

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  # 1324430 14-Jun-2015 13:38
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have a week booked at this place in raro in august:

http://www.booking.com/hotel/ck/ocean-spray-villa.html

personally we would rather have a proper 3 bdrm house - esp with 2 little ones - and a beach of our "own" - then a room or 2 in a resort

food - was ok when we were there 4 years or so ago - i understand there are even more options now, so we are looking fwd to trying some of the recommendations above (and with a house you can always cook your own food too if yoiu are so inclined...)


 
 
 
 


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  # 1324583 14-Jun-2015 19:46
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raro is good.  hire a car, drive to the various 'upmarket' hotels around for dinner.  meals were ~ $30 per main which wasn't too bad when you consider how much everything is in the supermarket!

samoa was great, we stayed here: http://www.savaiilagoon.co.nz/ - no pool (excellent lagoon), no kids club, but kiwi owners/managers, fresh + safe tap water, and decent food

am heading to Singapore and bintan island this time - got cheap flights FTW, but quickly realized that's the only cheap thing about Singapore :P





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  # 1324611 14-Jun-2015 20:31
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Regs: raro is good.  hire a car, drive to the various 'upmarket' hotels around for dinner.  meals were ~ $30 per main which wasn't too bad when you consider how much everything is in the supermarket!

samoa was great, we stayed here: http://www.savaiilagoon.co.nz/ - no pool (excellent lagoon), no kids club, but kiwi owners/managers, fresh + safe tap water, and decent food

am heading to Singapore and bintan island this time - got cheap flights FTW, but quickly realized that's the only cheap thing about Singapore :P



We did Bin Tan and other than the bomb suited customs agents, and being boarded by the military searching for drugs/explosives on the ferry back to Singapore, the trip itself was really good. 

Singapore accommodation can be expensive, but it's not difficult to find cheap food if you want it. Little India if you want cheap shopping (and food).

Like almost any location you can find expensive stuff and cheap. Tripadvisor is a site we use almost exclusively when we travel to ascertain how a restaurant, or accommodation will be.

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  # 1327509 18-Jun-2015 20:09
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These guys sum up Raro pretty well!





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  # 1327524 18-Jun-2015 20:31
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The only problem with Raro and kids is missing out on cruising around on scooters with no helmet. I knew it was time to go home when I was cruising along at 70km with no helmet on drinking a coffee.

There are some very family friendly activities like going up in the back country on an amphibious truck or doing quad bikes. The think I like about it is when you are out you are genuinely amoung the locals, not separated like you are in some other places. It's not super commercial and not cheap but not outrageously expensive.

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