The Top Cheap Accommodations on Rarotonga
We know how it looks; Rarotonga is like a sea of luxury resorts and villas. Where are all of the cheap accommodations at? Well, admittedly, the selection is small but at least it exists! We’ve compiled them all in this list of the best budget accommodations on Rarotonga. Find rooms for backpackers, families, couples and more in this list of cheap holiday homes, resorts, motels and hostels.
Before we dive into the cheapest accommodations on Rarotonga, be sure to bookmark The Complete Travel Guide to Rarotonga on a Budget, as well as the 20 Free & Cheap Things to Do on Rarotonga. Trust us, they’re pretty handy.
1. Rarotonga Backpackers
When it comes to cheap accommodation on Rarotonga, Rarotonga Backpackers is a good first go-to. Not only does their main beachfront complex in Arorangi have dorm rooms and beachfront units to take advantage of, but they also run affordable units along the north coast and in Tupapa. Backpackers have a choice of single, double, triple and dorm rooms, where the communal kitchen and dining area is a friendly and functional place to meet fellow travellers. In short, you can get that on-the-beach holiday experience for a fraction of the price!
2. Backpackers International Hostel
The cheapest accommodation on Rarotonga, Backpackers International Hostel offers dorm beds for as little as NZ$18 per night! But is it worth staying? The budget accommodation with a large and small dorm, single and twin/double rooms is set among tropical gardens just a short walk from Aroa Beach, a grocery store and a cafe. Enjoy a sociable atmosphere in the communal lounge and kitchen and benefit from affordable laundry facilities and airport transfers. Check out more hostels around the Cooks in the 10 Best Backpacker Hostels in Rarotonga & the Cook Islands.
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3. Aremango Guesthouse & Cottage
One of the limited (if not the only) true guesthouses on Rarotonga, Aremango Guesthouse & Cottage in Muri offers an affordable stay for solo travellers, couples or a couple of friends travelling together. Stay in the homely guesthouse with simple yet well-kept rooms and a shared kitchen, bathroom, lounge and a spacious backyard with loungers and hammocks to soak up the sun. There’s also a cottage and holiday home should you want your own space.
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4. Club Raro Resort
What’s the cheapest resort on Rarotonga? Club Raro Resort is the answer, offering minimalistic yet fresh rooms exclusively for adults. Enjoy hotel-style rooms on the beachfront or around the pool and gardens or opt for a studio apartment with a few extra food preparation facilities. You won’t have to worry about breakfast, however, with breakfast included with every stay and the Jalapenos restaurant offers an easy dining option. The pool is a popular hangout where you can treat yourself at the poolside bar. Otherwise, Avarua and its vibrant nightlife are just down the road. See how the resort compares to the 20 Best Resorts in Rarotonga.
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5. Paradise Inn
You can hardly beat the location of this budget motel on the sandy shores of Avarua. Just a short walk from town, Paradise Inn has 17 rooms accommodating one to four people with the “Loft” rooms having an interesting multi-storey layout. Rooms have basic cooking features like a microwave, stovetop and fridge, as well as an ensuite. A cool place to relax is on the front deck overlooking the sandy shores. See more stays like this in the 5 Best Motels in Rarotonga.
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6. Are Tamarini Beachfront Cottage & River Studio
For those seeking their own quiet space on Rarotonga for an affordable price, take a look at Are Tamarini Beachfront Cottage & River Studio. The two-bedroom holiday home in Avarua has a private garden setting leading all the way to the beach. For the price, it’s safe to say that the fixtures and furniture are rather basic but are functional enough for the non-fussy traveller. See similar stays in the 20 Best Holiday Homes in Rarotonga.
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7. Ariki Bungalows
The accommodation of the watersports operator, Ariki Adventures, Ariki Bungalows not only offers budget accommodation on Rarotonga but activity combos that you can’t refuse. The compact yet comfortable adults-only accommodation features three studio rooms and a two-bedroom villa for groups of up to 10. The bungalows sleep two people and include a kitchen, ensuite and a small deck to relax on with a meal. Otherwise, there’s space to hang out by the small swimming pool.
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8. Muri Hillside Guesthouses
Don’t be fooled by the name, you’ll have your own separate bungalow/studio at the Muri Hillside Guesthouses. The “Deluxe Studio” is an irresistibly affordable stay for couples, elevated on the hillside with self-catering facilities and a deck dining area. Families will find a cheap stay in “The Bungalow” or “The Cottage” with cots, buggies and toys available to hire. There’s also a central swimming pool and trampoline.
9. Lulu and Shane’s Island Retreat
Located just north of Muri, this tiny unit offers one of the cheapest stays in the area for solo travellers and couples. Lulu and Shane’s Island Retreat is set a little inland with spacious gardens that more than make up for the compact unit you’ll be staying in. The best feature, however, is the outdoor shower decorated with shells and cobblestones, as well as the compost toilet.
10. Airport Lodge
Whether you need a place to stay between flights to the outer islands or want to be close to Avarua, Airport Lodge will provide a cheap stay no matter the reason. Operated by the guys at the Rarotonga Backpackers, Airport Lodge offers minimalistic yet modern double/twin, triple and family rooms with ensuite bathrooms. The lodge is just opposite The Islander Hotel and its restaurant, as well as other cafes and services.
More About Budget Accommodations on Rarotonga
That’s it for our list of the best budget accommodations on Rarotonga. We know the choice is pretty limited, so you might want to check out these other listings for more recommendations:
- 10 Best Budget Accommodations in the Cook Islands
- 5 Best Motels on Rarotonga
- 10 Best Budget Accommodations on Aitutaki
Finally, anything you might have missed in your holiday planning you can probably find in The Complete Backpacking Guide to the Cook Islands on a Budget.