When to Go in Rarotonga

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Enjoy a comfortable tropical climate on Rarotonga where the high temperature hovers around just 84 degrees. Though there can be many hot and sticky days on Rarotonga, the largest city in the Cook Islands, its location far south of the equator lends to its moderate climate.

Weather of Rarotonga


The best time to visit Rarotonga is during the months on the edge of winter, summer and the rainy season, including April, May, September and October. During these months is the best chance to have both sunshine and warm weather throughout your trip.

June through August is winter on Rarotonga and at this time the island experiences climates that  are much cooler, with an average high of just 77 degrees. Antarctic cold fronts can bring many cool nights as well so it is recommended to bring a sweater or light jacket for night time in the winter.

December through April is rainy season, as well as cyclone season. Though the island has been struck by many cyclones, most years the rainy season is characterized by short and heavy bursts of rain followed by sun. The dry season is June through August, however rain clouds are generally seen around the mountain peaks throughout this entire season.

Holidays & Events on Rarotonga

There are three major festivals that take place on Rarotonga throughout the year – Dancer of the Year Contest takes place in mid-April, the National Self Governing Commemoration in August and Tiare Week during the first week of December. These are great times to visit the Cook Islands and see some cultural dances and entertainment that you may not otherwise.

The tourist season on the Cook Islands is June through August. During this time, Australians and New Zealanders pour onto to the island as a break from their country’s weather. If you are planning on visiting during these months, make hotel and other reservations early, as thing are often full. During Christmas time, many Cook Island natives come home from New Zealand for the holiday. While finding a hotel room during this time is easy, securing a flight is much more difficult. Be sure to plan well in advance if you will be traveling at this time.

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Destinations in Rarotonga