What to pack!
1. JANDALS/FLIP FLOPS
Jandals/flip flops/thongs - whatever you call them where you come from you will need a pair - or two! These are standard island footwear - great for casual walks, school,work.dinner,church - pretty much any occasion we have a jandal for! Throw a pair or two into your suit case as they really are the perfect footwear. Also depending on what activities you will be doing you may want to pack a pair of runners/sneakers. These come in handy for gym, running, exercise or mountain walks like the needle or cross island trek. So if you planning to get active while here in the Cooks then throw a pair in your bag too. Be sure that you clean your shoes thoroughly before leaving home and again when you leave Rarotonga. Clean your shoes of any dirt or sand before travelling.
2. OXYBENZONE FREE SUNBLOCK
The great thing about the tropics is that most days of the year it is sunny! Its hard to replicate warm weather anywhere which is why many people come to the Cooks, warm weather, beach, sun, sea and the food. You will no doubt be spending most of your days on the beach, near one or out and about. To protect you from the island sun you will need some sunscreen. Sunscreen is pretty pricey on the island (most imported things are) so bring one with you. Before you grab that oooold sunscreen in the back of your bathroom vanity cupboard - check to see if it is Oxybenzone free first! Oxybenzone is a compound found in most sunblocks that has been related to coral damage, so help us out and keep our coral reefs beautiful, please choose an Oxybenzone free product!
3. INSECT REPELLENT
We did say earlier that its the small things that can bug you! Small flying insects or mosquitoes. To prevent getting mozzie bites you should probably pack some insect repellant for your. These will come in handy when you go out and about or when doing your bush walks. We do try to keep Sokala clean and bug free but there is no getting away from them, you will have them so just keep insect repellant handy.
4. REEF SHOES
Whether you are walking the beaches or going out snorkelling we strongly recommend you have a good pair of reef shoes. We do have some here at Sokala but cant always promise you we have your size so to save you missing out pick up a pair of reef shoes for you and bring along.
5. TECH GADGETS
It is not uncommon to leave the house without some piece of tech equipment, our phones, ipads, laptops etc have become a part of life and many of us regard them as necessities! For a tropical holiday you definitely need them! Bring with you a camera for those amazing kodak moments (and there will be many) your phone to stay in touch (or do photos - 2 in 1 gadget!) and a tablet if you feel like watching a moving or two in the evening. A mobile phone or tablet is also great for being able to refer back to this website! We are slowly pushing away from paper and trying to load everything onto our website so you have easy access to it before you leave home and while on holiday. Our website is ever changing as we add more content to it and we recommend you bring phone or tablet so you can easily refer to it whenever you need information!
6. SNORKEL GEAR
We do have snorkel gear at the villas available for all our guests, however with the recent changes we understand you may be a bit weary about using our snorkel gear. If you prefer bring snorkel gear with you or just the snorkel itself and you can use our masks. We do wash all our equipment but want you to feel comfortable so if you prefer to bring your own then do so.
7. DRIVERS LICENSE
Our islands are very small and easy to get around. We have buses and taxis or you can hire a car or scooter if you wish. When hiring a vehicle you will require your home drivers licence - so before you leave home, check your wallet to see you have your home licence as you will need this if you need to apply for your Cook Islands visitors drivers licence.
8. NEW ZEALAND DOLLARS
We do have our own currency (wait till you see our three dollar notes and coins!) we also accept and use New Zealand dollars. Credit cards are fairly widely accepted but for many small stores around the island, market vendors its still cash based. So be sure you have some New Zealand cash on you for when you are not able to swipe your card.
There is a book for every occasion and mood. A book is a constant friend when you are sad, happy, relaxed or stressed! No matter what the question is there is a book with the answer! Holidays we find are when our guests catch up on reading or just read! We have a big library up in the office which you are most welcome to come up and borrow. Office is open from Monday to Fridays 9am to 2pm closed weekends. If you want to bring one with you then do so or if you use a gadget to read then download some of your favourite titles and enjoy a book or two while you are home here at Sokala.
Lastly - but still important is snacks! Yes snacks. You will hear from lots of people who have travelled here before you to bring snacks. Our supermarkets have lots of on the shelf but we cant promise you that we have what you like. So if you have the luggage space and time then chuck a few snacks in your bags and bring with you. Chippies, nuts, cheeses, crackers etc All our guests come home to Sokala and have their snack starter packs ready to go!
So this is it! This is our little suggestion list of thing to bring with you, of course we all different and you may have already thought of these things but we thought we would jump in there and give a few tips. If you have any queries just send us a email as we only too happy to help!