Kia orana welcome
Rarotonga’s Most Awarded Cultural Attraction
In early 1980’s Raymond Pirangi, a visionary tribal sub chief, set his sights on this once secluded mountain hideaway he had also shared with his beloved wife Emma in their courting days, and publicly swore that he would rebuild a thriving legacy for their young family, for the entire district of Arorangi and for the people of Rarotonga .
The dream began to take shape and with Raymond’s candid personality and Emma’s green fingers
on July 29, 1987 Highland Paradise opened her gates and the day tours through the village and
botanical gardens began. Sadly, the dream was cut short, in 1997 Raymond fell ill and passed away and with her soul mate gone Emma returned to her provisions store on the coast. Before long, the gardens and dense bush became overgrown and Highland Paradise reverted back into hiding.
In 2000 Tutu, the daughter of the founder returned from New Zealand and decided that the legacy must go on and single-handedly began the laborious task of rebuilding Highland Paradise to its former glory. With little money and the inability to lease the sacred land, she was forced to mortgage her family land and home – all she owns to access seed money for the project. She sought the assistance
of a close network of friends and mentors. It was at this point, that the Highland Paradise Cultural Centre business plan was born and the Vision was set.
“To maintain, preserve and present authentic Cook Islands culture and history for the ultimate benefit of Cook Islanders”
To offer a unique, authentic, spiritual, cultural and historical experience whilst preserving this fragile natural resource, through the employment of descendants of the Tinomana tribe where profits are returned into the business and community for further enhancement of the cultural experience.
A Spectacular Stage Show Telling The Story of Our Ancient Heritage.
Our Monday, Wednesday and Friday sunset cultural nights include hosted return transfers, guides, interactive village tour, tapu lifting, warrior welcome, a welcome cocktail, a traditional Umu feast (underground oven) and a spectacular stage show telling the story of our ancient heritage through our songs, dancing and drumming.
We are proud to be the recipient of the Air New Zealand Cook Islands Tourism Awards, multiple times, and is described as a “must see tourist attraction”
We are proud to share our culture and stories. Join us for a journey through our history in a unique setting while enjoying a traditional umu feast.
Enjoy & Learn About Our Culture & History With Our Tours.
Self Guided Tour
Stroll the grounds at your leisure and learn by number from your personal guide book.
You will see the important, culturally significant sites and learn about many of our beautiful and medicinal plants and flowers. Take as long as you like. Relax and feel the history.
Which ever tour your choose your will experience our rich history and culture.
Our VIDEO Gallery
Want to see what Highland Paradise is like? Watch these videos.