insights from the ultimate cruising team

The Austral and Cook Islands with Aranui 5

The Austral and Cook Islands with Aranui 5


If you loved cruising The Marquesas with Aranui 5, take a look at this new cruise option with Aranui Cruises – The Austral and Cook Islands in September 2021.  If you haven’t yet cruised with Aranui, you don’t know what you’re missing!  Although the Aranui 5 usually operates as a freighter transporting goods between the remote Tahitian Islands, every so often Aranui Cruises will add an extra sailing into the schedule where they leave the freight behind and concentrate purely on their passenger service.


This is a very cool little cruise departing from Papeete with a day at sea as you head to the Cook Islands.  The first stop is Aitutaki and what a way to begin your cruise!  Think turquoise waters, stretches of white sand, palm trees, vibrant fish life … it really is a paradise!  Honeymooners love it here for the sheer beauty, relaxed pace and pure serenity.

Image:  Cook Islands Tourism


A stop in Rarotonga will give you the opportunity to explore this favourite South Pacific hotspot.  It takes just 45 minutes to drive around the island at 40km/hour but it manages to pack in a lot into a small space.  Beautiful white sandy beaches lined with palm trees, markets, bush walks, glass bottom boat tours, fishing, fantastic restaurants and a spot of shopping. 


Then it’s off to the Austral Islands.  Lying to the south of Tahiti, the Austral Islands don’t enjoy the same tourist numbers as other island groups like the Tuamotu or the Society Islands, but that just adds to their charm.  Untouched and off-the-beaten-track, this island group will no doubt appeal to those who loved The Marquesas. 


Beautiful white sand, intense blue lagoons, sheer mountains dropping to deep valleys and high plains, the Austral Islands are quite spectacular.  You’ll find cliffs and caves where legends abound, old burial grounds, archaeological remnants dating back to pre-European times, vibrant and colourful villages and friendly communities who love to welcome visitors.  


The 12 night cruise aboard Aranui 5 departs September 4, 2021 from Papeete and it’s the only itinerary like this that Aranui Cruises is offering in 2021.  For more information, take a look at our website page or give our Ultimate Cruising experts a call to order a brochure and itinerary details.