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Cruise ship passengers lap up Rarotonga’s attractions

Thursday 25 May 2023 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Economy, National


Cruise ship passengers lap up Rarotonga’s attractions
Nancy Kora with Paul Gauguin visitors at the Avatiu Harbour. LOSIRENE LACANIVALU/23052407

Around 240 passengers on board the cruise ship Paul Gauguin made their way to downtown Avarua, Rarotonga yesterday making the most of their short visit.

Kora Pearls’ Nancy Kora said sales yesterday were great adding some days it would be better with other bigger cruise ships.

Kora said the cruise ship yesterday was a smaller one but they managed to sell some items from their wide range of Cook Islands pearls products.

“Any sale is a good sale,” she said.

Cruise ship Paul Gauguin anchored outside the Avatiu Harbour. MELINA ETCHES/23052421

However Kora suggested that cruise ships could relook at their schedules and plan their arrival here on the weekdays or Saturdays rather than Sundays.

She said it would be better for the vendors and the visitors alike if they visited on weekdays or Saturdays.

Cruise Cook Islands’ Stuart Henry says Paul Gauguin pays regular visits to the Cook Islands and always arrives in Aitutaki on Tuesdays and Rarotonga on Wednesdays.

Henry said the weather yesterday with slightly higher swells was not the best however the Paul Gauguin captains have worked with these challenges before and managed to bring the passengers safely onshore for their daylong visit.

Cruise ship Paul Gauguin guests enjoyed a day out in Rarotonga. LOSIRENE LACANIVALU / 23052404

He reiterated safety was paramount in decisions such as this. The passengers boarded the tenders for the short ride to the pier and back to the ship.

Henry said Paul Gauguin left Papeete for Huahine before visiting Aitutaki on Tuesday and Rarotonga yesterday. The cruise ship will be visiting Bora Bora and Moorea before returning to Papeete in French Polynesia.

Cruise Cook Islands is expecting Paul Gauguin to return on July 5 and September 13 followed by Silver Explorer in October.

“For 2023 to date for Cruise Cook Islands the cruise ship visits have been very positive with Aitutaki experiencing nine out of nine successful calls and Rarotonga six out of seven successful calls,” Henry said.

He said it was unfortunate Palmerston was unable to have the Silver Explorer visitors ashore in April and also the Aranui 5 was unable to visit Atiu Island in April due to adverse weather conditions.