The trend for eco-tourism is showing no signs of slowing down, with a recent survey by GlobalData predicting that 35{a6f918a28d0c453b79f16bf9c353d89c8f4246dd535f28283d5e631e0d8f251e} of global travellers would be likely to book a sustainable holiday.

With this in mind, Luxury Escapes has launched an exclusive offer with the Ikurangi Eco Retreat in the Cook Islands, a fully-sustainable resort that operates with the environment and eco-tourism at its forefront.

 Cook Islands eco-tourism: a safari tent at Ikurangi

With more and more people cutting down on plastic, going vegan for environmental reasons and refusing takeaway coffee cups in favour of reusable alternatives, it makes sense that they would also be keen to holiday with a clear conscience.

Cook Islands eco-tourism: Saltwater pool

The Ikurangi retreat’s aim is to create a place that brings tourists to Rarotonga in the Cook Islands without a negative impact on the environment. To achieve that, this award-winning resort implements initiatives such as using exclusively plant-based cleaning products, reusing wastewater to irrigate its gardens and priding itself on its saltwater swimming pool.

Cook Islands eco-tourism: Rarotonga

It’s easy to see why the Ikurangi Eco Retreat is so passionate about preserving its environment. Nestled into lush green jungle and with dramatic mountains as its backdrop, it sits in a particularly beautiful part of the world.

Cook Islands eco-tourism: inside a safari tent at Ikurangi

Guests have the option of staying in a Tropical ‘Are’ (Polynesian for home) or Luxury Safari Tent, taking the idea of ‘glamping’ to new levels.
Each tent is built on shallow foundations to minimise the effect on the land and features compostable toilets, low-energy lightbulbs and natural ventilation, eliminating the need for energy-sapping air-con.

Other eco-tourism initiatives include complimentary bicycle hire and cloth shopping bags for guests to use during their stay. And when the business does well, it pledges 5{a6f918a28d0c453b79f16bf9c353d89c8f4246dd535f28283d5e631e0d8f251e} of its profits to local conservation limits.

Cook Islands eco-tourism: cycling

The Ikurangi Retreat also supports its local community by actively encouraging tourists to use local shops and restaurants, paying staff living wages and helping guests arrange volunteer work during their time on Rarotonga.

In terms of activities available, it’s all about making the most of the island’s natural beauty. From cycle rides to the Muri lagoon (just 15 minutes from Ikurangi by bike) to complimentary snorkelling equipment that allows a glimpse into the varied marine life, there’s plenty to keep visitors busy.

Cook Islands eco-tourism: yoga

Yoga instructors are also encouraged to hold their retreats at Ikurangi, the perfect natural backdrop for finding Zen.

Foodies meanwhile will love the organically grown local food served at the retreat – from tropical breakfasts of fresh fruit and artisan bread delivered to the room to chef-prepared platters of delicious meats and cheeses, Rarotonga prides itself on its great food.


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