5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© CookIslandsPocketGuide.com
5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours

© CookIslandsPocketGuide.com

Are There Bus Tours Around Rarotonga and the Cook Islands?

We get it; whizzing around Rarotonga on a scooter isn’t for everyone! Luckily, there is a much easier way to explore the highlights of the island with the convenience of a driver and a guide to give you the most fun yet informative experience. Yes, bus tours do exist on Rarotonga! While only a small selection, there are bus tours for Rarotonga showing you sights, taking you to local homes for dinner and even nightlife tours taking you to the bars. We go through the various types of bus tours of Rarotonga in the list below!

Note that there are no bus tours on the outer islands of the Cook Islands with the exception of a bit of a sightseeing tour by bus as part of the Aitutaki Day Tour, in between a flight and a lagoon cruise. Find out more in the 10 Best Tours of Aitutaki.

1. Raro Tours – Rarotonga Island Discovery Tour

Operating one of the largest fleets of tour buses on Rarotonga, Raro Tours is an obvious go-to for bus tours in the Cook Islands. Their “Island Discovery Tour” is an excellent way to get acquainted with Rarotonga by bus, including its snorkelling spots. The three-hour bus tour also includes some exclusive highlights of its own, such as stops and commentary at historical maraes (an ancient gathering place), visiting local industries like a perfumes factory and tasting locally-made liqueurs. You’ll also stop for a coconut husking demonstration to learn more about the “Tree of Life”.

Tours start at 10am, Monday to Friday, and include transfers. Learn more about Raro Tours, read reviews and book tickets on Viator or Tripadvisor. Plus, check out more ways to sightsee on Rarotonga, other than taking the bus, in the 10 Best Sightseeing Tours in Rarotonga & the Cook Islands.

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© Raro Tours

2. Cook Islands Tours – Rarotonga Orientation & Sightseeing Tour

Treating travellers to a range of popular bus tours on Rarotonga, Cook Islands Tours offers more ways to explore the island with the convenience of bus transport included. Their 2h30mins “Orientation & Sightseeing Tour“ is a good choice for sightseeing where you will be pointed out to some excellent places to eat on the island, interesting activities to do, as well as stopping by some cultural attractions that you can tick off the list. Additionally, their evening “Progressive Dinner Tour“ offers a way to have dinner with the locals, eating a different course at various local homes while being transported by bus in between.

Find out more about Cook Islands Tours, check out reviews and book tours on Viator and Tripadvisor or learn more about their Progressive Dinner Tour on Viator, Tripadvisor or the 10 Best Foodie Experiences in the Cook Islands.

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© CookIslandsPocketGuide.com

3. Rehab Party Bus Tour

For a bus tour around Rarotonga by night, Rehab Party Bus is a fun-filled nightlife tour of the island’s most buzzing bars and clubs. Under the “thatched” island-style roof of the party bus, dance and play hilarious games with the crew as you travel around Raro! Picking you up and dropping you off at your accommodation at the end of the night, your transfers are taken care of. Just let your hair down with like-minded travellers and locals and hit some of the best bars around the island before concluding the tour at the Rehab nightclub.

Find out more about nightlife tours in The Ultimate Guide to Rarotonga Nightlife + Happy Hour List.

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© Zhang Da Qiang

4. Going Troppo Nightlife Tour

That’s right, there’s another nightlife party bus on Rarotonga! Gather in “the green bus” decorated with LED lights and with up to 22 other soon-to-be friends on the Going Troppo Nightlife Tour. Grab your souvenir LED “Going Troppo” wine glass or stubby-holder and hit the road to various bars and clubs around the island. The four to six-hour tour with pick-ups at 7/8pm includes a complimentary snack platter to keep you going throughout the night.

Tours operate Wednesdays and Fridays. Book your nightlife tour and read reviews on Viator or Tripadvisor

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© Going Troppo Nightlife Tour 

5. Self-Guided Rarotonga Bus Tour

Finally, another way to tour Rarotonga by bus is by simply hopping on the round-the-island bus and hopping off wherever you like along the main road – there are even day passes available to do just that! Clockwise and anticlockwise buses run every hour throughout the day from Monday to Saturday. Make your own itinerary of Rarotonga (or use A Self-Guided Day Trip Around Rarotonga) and see the sights while enjoying riding the local bus that’s fun yet pretty cheap!

Learn more about the Rarotonga bus, the price and schedules in Taking the Bus in Rarotonga: Bus Fares, Timetable & More.

5 Best Rarotonga & Cook Islands Bus Tours© CookIslandsPocketGuide.com

More About Bus Tours in Rarotonga and the Cook Islands

That’s our comprehensive list of all the bus tours around Rarotonga and the Cook Islands. As we said, there aren’t that many, but there are many more ways to tour the islands, whether it’s via electric tuk-tuk, safari Jeep, self-drive 4WD buggies or something else. Find out more in the guides below:

Finally, get more advice for ways to travel around the Cook Islands in the Cook Islands Transport Guide: 15 Best Ways to Get Around the Cook Islands.


Robin C.

This article was reviewed and published by Robin, the co-founder of Cook Islands Pocket Guide. He has lived, worked and travelled across 16 different countries before settling in the South Pacific, so he knows a thing or two about planning the perfect trip in this corner of the world. Robin works and consults regularly with Cook Islands Tourism Corporation, a local government body representing the tourism industry. Robin is also the co-founder of several other South Pacific travel guides and is a regular host of webinars with the South Pacific Tourism Organisation.

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