Rarotonga International Airport

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Rarotonga International Airport
Rarotonga Airport from air1.JPG
Rarotonga International Airport from the air
Airport typePublic
LocationAvarua, Rarotonga, Cook Islands
Elevation AMSL19 ft / 6 m
Coordinates21°12′10″S 159°48′20″W / 21.20278°S 159.80556°W / -21.20278; -159.80556
Direction Length Surface
m ft
08/26 2,328 7,638 Concrete

Rarotonga International Airport (IATA: RAR, ICAO: NCRG) is the Cook Islands' main international gateway, located in the town and district of Avarua, Rarotonga, 3 km west of the downtown area on the northern coast.

Because of the close proximity of the runways to the nearby roads, it is possible to get very close to the aircraft while they are departing and landing. Runway 08, which is at the western end of the runway, in particular is often very popular when a large jet is landing.


Rarotonga International Airport was officially opened on 29 January 1974 by Queen Elizabeth II on the site of a former United States World War II airbase. Local professional photographer Bill Johnson covered the official opening by the queen, who had flown on a direct flight from London to Rarotonga. Johnson was also the official photographer for the construction of the airport and covered the full photographic documentation of the construction of the Rarotonga International Airport from start to completion.[citation needed] The construction was a joint venture between Gammon Milne Construction Company, New Zealand Government, Air New Zealand and Cook Islands Government.[citation needed]

In 2003, the terminal and departure and check-in areas were revamped at a cost of US $650,000.[1] An $8.5m reconstruction project commenced in 2009 to revamp and expand the existing terminal facilities. The new-look terminal was officially opened on 22 June 2010.[2]

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Air New Zealand Auckland, Los Angeles, Sydney
Air Rarotonga Aitutaki, Atiu, Mangaia, Mauke, Mitiaro, Manihiki, Penrhyn, Pukapuka
Air Tahiti Papeete
Jetstar Airways Auckland[3]
Virgin Australia Auckland



  1. ^ "Revamp for airport check-in area" (Press release). Cook Islands Government. 9 August 2003. Archived from the original on 6 February 2012. Retrieved 15 January 2012.
  2. ^ "New $8.5m airport terminals opened". Cook Islands News. 22 June 2010. Retrieved 15 January 2012.
  3. ^ Gibson, Nevil. "Jetstar to launch Cook Islands service next March". National Business Review. Retrieved 7 October 2015.

External links[edit]