Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Cook Islands

Pristine beaches, gentle breezes, sunsets that take your breath away - Jane Cassie explores the Cook Islands for About.com

After taking a quick puddle-jumper flight from the capital Cook Island of Rarotonga, to the sleepier island of Aitutaki, you will be blissfully removed from anything that resembles urban civiliization.After a short pontoon boat ride to the island of Akitua (and home of the island’s solo property, Aitutaki Lagoon Resort and Spa) you’ll experience a modern day version of Fantasy Island seclusion on 37 acres where billowy palms line the pristine beachfront.

Accommodations at Aitutaki Lagoon Resort and Spa consist of 37 units in various styles: Beachfront bungalows have spectacular views and private hammocks. Garden bungalows are surrounded by manicured flora. Overwater bungalows cantilever directly beyond the shoreline to offer a quick lagoon dip right from each private front deck.

There are two dining options: the Bounty Restaurant where the free continental breakfast buffet is displayed each morning and dinners are served nightly, or the more casual fare at the beachside Flying Boat Bar and Grill, offering the added perk of a picturesque panorama.

Various destination wedding packages are available. The Akitua Special includes marriage license, flowers, bottle of bubbly, dinner for two, and string band accompaniment. The One Foot Island Wedding whisks the couple away to an even more remote (yes, it’s hard to imagine!) island with the same perks and pleasures. For a little extra, you can even have a dance performance included.

Your vision will blur from the trillions of sparkles reflecting off the surreal lagoon before you, boasting every hue of blue from the palest celadon, to the most brilliant turquoise. Distant tropical motus (islets) fringe the trancelike surface and are linked by a continuous strand of reef like a necklace of emerald gems. White wash crashes over the ridge of craggy coral, and the indigo abyss beyond melds with bluebird skies.

Visit Aitutaki Lagoon Resort and Spa Web site

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