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Chantal’s drive: ‘It’s a matter of determination’

Saturday 1 October 2022 | Written by Al Williams | Published in Features


Chantal’s drive: ‘It’s a matter of determination’
Chantal Napa is focussed on giving visitors a “one stop shop” experience. 22092904

A Cook Islands podcaster has branched out in an effort to connect the nation to dozens of countries.

Tourism operator Chantal Napa has spent more than two years building an international audience after travel bans forced her to look at other options.

Napa, with the help of her United States business partner Haydn Adams, set about taking the Cook Islands to the world through the Kia Orana Podcast.

Now she has expanded the operation through sheer persistence after failing in her first attempt to attract funding.

Napa made a successful application through the Cook Islands Chamber of Commerce and has invested the money back into the business, subsequently giving her website users a more “one-stop shop” experience.

That includes a QR code which takes users directly to services, including website, directions and direct call options.

“I knew I needed my website upgraded, when the borders were reopening and I was meeting tourists again, the travel was different and their needs were different.

“They want information and they want it all in one place; they don’t want to have to go to different places.

“This is what they are used to overseas.”

Napa is looking for local buy in from accommodators, retailers, and food outlets.

“It’s a matter of determination.” 

Since launching her podcast, Napa has interviewed close to 100 people including artists, entertainers and Prime Minister Mark Brown, among others.

The podcast was launched in May of 2020 by Napa and her business partner Haydn Adams. It was initiated by Haydn who wrote a book about the Cook Islands – How I Fell In Love With an Island.

Napa discovered the book while on holiday in Aitutaki and reached out to him. A friendship was formed and not long after that the Kia Orana Podcast was created, with Napa offering a local perspective on various parts about island life and Haydn offering the visitor’s lens on the many beautiful islands of the Cooks.

The podcast is devoted to advocating what visitors will and will not find in the Cook Islands and delving into all the aspects of local life.

Since starting they have covered a number of genres including current affairs, education, youth, agriculture, government departments, non-government organisations, society and culture, business, the creative arts, literature, artists, musicians, performers, sports, as well as the pa metua community.

The podcast is currently available on platforms including Apple Podcast, Spotify, Google Podcast, Overcast, Amazon Music, Stitcher, Castro, Castbox, Pocket Casts, Podfriend and RSS Feed.


John Tierney on 02/10/2022

Podcaster gets Podcaster.... Ha ha gotcha