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Te Vara Nui Village

Join an interactive experience to appreciate the authentic educational and entertaining story of Cook Islands’ culture.

See a concentration of Maori cultural artifacts and performances at Te Vara Nui Village. The setting itself is alluring, with a lake, islands, volcanic rock gardens and small waterfalls.

Follow the drum beat to participate in the Cultural Village Tour. Learn about traditional methods for fishing, pearl farming, preparing medicine and navigating. This includes a delightful intermixing of reality and legend, including stories of canoe migration to and from the islands, missionaries and cannibalism. Visit a sacred religious site known as a marae. As part of the experience, watch local artisans carving and preparing traditional dance costumes. Many of these activities are interactive, so bring your camera to photograph family members as they get involved in drumming the pate and dancing to traditional music.

Settle in for an evening of entertainment at the Over-Water Night Show with local dancers and musicians performing on multiple stages at the waterfall garden. Many of the village performers are related to Te Vara, bringing traditional knowledge and skills to provide authenticity of Maori culture. Enjoy the sumptuous buffet of island foods and Western favorites included in the ticket price.

The Legend of Tongaiti is communicated through drumbeats and dance rhythms lit by flaming torches. Learn about Tongaiti, the ancient legendary warrior who traveled with his family by wakas, or seagoing canoes, in search of floating islands. Upon arriving at an island of unwelcoming natives, Tongaiti asked his beautiful daughter to dance. Her rhythmic swaying softened the heart of the village chief, who then welcomed the travelers for dancing and feasting.

The 2-hour Village Tour occurs daily in late afternoon. Fees are reduced for children. Those under 5 enter for free. The Over-Water Night Show and Dinner occurs just after the Village Tour, with dinner followed by entertainment. Reserve spots in advance. Purchase the Combo Extravaganza to combine the village tour and night show and dinner.

Te Vara Nui Village is on the southeastern shores of Rarotonga, less than a 10-minute drive from Avarua. Add this spot to your vacation agenda to appreciate the local culture as well as beautiful beaches of the Cook Islands.

Popular Activities at Te Vara Nui Village

It's worth giving yourself lots of time at Te Vara Nui Village. Below are some of the top activities:

You might like to consider buying a Spectacular Over-Water Night Show & Dinner or a Te Vara Nui Cultural Village Tour while you're visiting. These experiences are some of the best.

Check out our Rarotonga things to do page to discover many more activities in the area.


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Best Lodging Options Near Te Vara Nui Village

See all 188 Properties near Te Vara Nui Village
Pacific Resort Rarotonga $258
Pacific Resort Rarotonga

Pacific Resort Rarotonga

Muri Beach, Rarotonga
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga hotel is just steps from Muri Lagoon and Muri Beach. Te Vara Nui Village and Muri Night Markets are also within 5 minutes.

    Muri Beach Club $224
    Muri Beach Club

    Muri Beach Club

    Muri Beach Point, Rarotonga
       
      4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga resort is just steps from Avana Lagoon and Muri Beach. Muri Lagoon and Koromiri are also within 5 minutes.

      Muri Beachcomber
      Muri Beachcomber

      Muri Beachcomber

      Muri Beach, Rarotonga
         
        3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga resort is just steps from Muri Lagoon and Muri Beach. Te Vara Nui Village and Tikioki Marine Sanctuary are also within 1 mi (2 km).

        Te Vakaroa Villas
        Te Vakaroa Villas

        Te Vakaroa Villas

        Ara Tapu (Main Road), Muri Beach, Rarotonga
           
          5.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga villa is just steps from Muri Night Markets and Muri Beach. Muri Lagoon and Te Vara Nui Village are also within 5 minutes.

          Dorothy's Muri Beach Bungalows
          Dorothy's Muri Beach Bungalows

          Dorothy's Muri Beach Bungalows

          Muri Ngatangiia, Rarotonga
             
            3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga villa is just steps from Muri Night Markets and Muri Beach. Muri Lagoon and Te Vara Nui Village are also within 5 minutes.

            Manea on Muri $146
            Manea on Muri

            Manea on Muri

            Muri Beach, Rarotonga, Cook Island
               
              2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated on the beach, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Muri Beach and Te Vara Nui Village. Tikioki Marine Sanctuary and Beachcomber Pearl Market are also within 6 mi (10 km).

              Manea Beach Villas
              Manea Beach Villas

              Manea Beach Villas

              Muri Beach, Rarotonga
                 
                3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Nestled on the beach, this Rarotonga resort is steps from Muri Beach, Muri Lagoon, and Te Vara Nui Village. Koromiri and Muri Night Markets are also within 10 minutes.

                Fully Furnished Muri Beach Bach and Friendly Local Support
                Fully Furnished Muri Beach Bach and Friendly Local Support

                Fully Furnished Muri Beach Bach and Friendly Local Support

                Rarotonga, Ngatangiia
                   
                  0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Situated in Rarotonga, this villa is within a 10-minute walk of Avana Lagoon and Muri Beach. Koromiri and Te Vara Nui Village are also within 5 minutes.