Highland Paradise Drums of our Forefathers Sunset Culture Show

Highland Paradise Drums of our Forefathers Sunset Culture Show

Highland Paradise Drums of our Forefathers Sunset Culture Show
4.5

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4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles444 reviews
Excellent
285
Very good
103
Average
34
Poor
12
Terrible
10

Stephen H
Greater Melbourne, Australia26 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sept 2022
We did the full evening experience including village tour, Umu feast and culture night (music, dances, stories). Although a lot more expensive than the “island nights” within the big resorts, it was well worth it. The village tour was interesting, the umu feast wonderful in diversity, taste and quantity but the true highlight was the great music and dancing. The performers were just excellent, with amazing drummers and just wonderful dancers. Our genial host Daniel kept the evening moving with interesting historical perspectives and facts, and the transfers went smoothly to and from the resort, even though somehow our names went missing off the booking list for both the bus and the restaurant, they squeezed us in.
Written 23 September 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Mark K
Brisbane, Australia26 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2022 • Couples
Transport to the venue was easy from our hotel with complimentary transfers included.

The venue at Highland Paradise Cultural Centre is particularly cool being high in the mountains and with genuine sites of cultural significance. The tour around the site by Danny was very interesting and insightful - He's definitely a great story teller and gave good insight into the Cook Islands history in an entertaining format.

The dance show was high energy and entertaining and the food was also tasty.

Would definitely recommend if you're keen to get out of the resorts and see a place of cultural significance.
Written 31 December 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Daydream214592
Auckland Central, New Zealand6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Family
Have been to many similar shows in Fiji and NZ and elsewhere but this one tops the lot! The full package. Everything was spot on, the historical and cultural teachings and activities, the performances (musicians, dancers and drummers) the 1,800 year old marae cut into te maunga and the food too. But best of all was all the expert narration and words of wisdom from a direct descendent of the last local King. It’s a must do activity!
Written 27 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

russell-and-jennifer
hastings new zealand6 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2022
At the end of a 10 day trip to Rarotonga and four days to Aitutaki, this was our sole truly bad experience. Our accommodation pick up was to be between 5.15 and 5.30 pm. At about 5.20, we watched roadside as what we thought was the bus transport (and indeed was) passed us without stopping. At about 5.40, we sought to ring the provider. After several unanswered calls, and enlisting assistance of others, we finally got through. The message was that the bus was delayed, due to many pick ups, and would be with us soon. This was, in reality, a complete untruth as, by gone 6pm, no bus had turned up. After further unanswered calls, and on the point of giving up, our hotel staff finally made contact and were told to organise a taxi. The provider would sort out payment upon arrival. We were also informed that the evening had yet to begin.

We finally arrived close to 7pm and caught literally 30 seconds of a one hour tour of the grounds, and extensive cultural information. Entering the main dining and theatre area, the proprietor greeted us with a smile and asked for the full price of $260 for two adults. I begged to differ, citing the farce of the transport, plus missing all the above. The response was “well tell me again, what exactly did happen”, followed by amazed looks as to how it could all have occurred. We were then offered a $60 reduction, which I considered modest but accepted as I was also told that they were paying the taxi driver $40 for her trouble. The taxi driver had advised that these people often tried to fob her off with just $10. Sadly, our accommodation provider, in following up our report back of this terrible evening, discovered that a $10 only payment was made. The driver, apparently, will now refuse to provide the ‘emergency’ service after doing so on other occasions before us.

After payment, we were shown to a small table for two right at the back of the theatre next to the buffet spread. Waiting for us we’re two arrival ‘cocktails’, included in the price, which were both warm and tasted of nothing but fruit juice. We were the first to be invited to the buffet table. Unfortunately, that seeming change in fortune was small comfort when we saw the offering, and even more so when trying to eat it. Hot food - clumsily cut up chicken, pork and white fish was tepid. The cold food, relatively basic and poorly prepared salads, rice, potatoes and other carbs, was equally tepid. Desserts were limited to various chocolate brownie type slabs and token fresh fruit. Without question, this was disgusting food, far and away the worst offering in a country which, these days, really does offer quality, fresh fare be it casual or top end dining.

It would be wrong to end without noting that, to the credit of the host, we were moved before the show to the very front of the theatre. Even more notable, the dancing and drumming show, complete with historical commentary, was quite superb. What a shame it has to exist in this context.
Written 13 May 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

lainielace
London, UK27 contributions
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2023 • Couples
Unfortunately I wish we could rate this experience properly, but the pick-up never arrived, which is apparently not uncommon.

We booked directly on their website 6 weeks in advance (fortunately never paying anything) but suspiciously only got a ‘thanks’ rather than a confirmation email. So I followed up with a really helpful tour advisor at the Punanga Nui market 5 days prior who tried to contact them and confirm for us, but due to poor phone signal couldn’t get through.

On their recommendation we waited outside our accommodation at the 17.15 pick-up time, arriving a couple of minutes early. Our accommodation provider helpfully tried to call them at 18.00 after we’d spent 45 minutes standing by the side of the road in the drizzle getting bitten by mosquitoes and sadly they didn’t pick up. They did call them back later and offer to pick us up in a cab, but we’d already abandoned the idea and caught the next bus to find dinner elsewhere.

We can only assume the tour is commercially set up for package holiday goers and resort guests, not independent travellers who’ve tried to do their research which is a shame. We would advise against trying to book directly on their website and you might have more luck!

In case of interest we emailed Te Vara Nui, who appear to be their main competitor, that night in case they could squeeze us in for their island night the day after, and while this wasn’t possible they responded very helpfully within half an hour.
Written 19 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Josh + Rebecca R
Christchurch, New Zealand58 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022 • Couples
Entertaining evening all round. We got picked up and dropped off to our accommodation. I felt sorry for the driver as a lot of the guests weren’t ready for pick up when we got to their resort which must be frustrating for the drivers! That could lead to some delays in getting there. Interesting evening learning about the cultural history. The food was good, there was plenty of it! The drum and dance show was great! Would recommend this show, but be prepared for a long evening as we didn’t get home till after 10pm and we got picked up at 5pm.
Written 24 June 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Phillip B
Palmerston North, New Zealand214 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022
Second visit to Highlands Paradise. 5 years ago this night was a highlight of our holiday. Therefore I put it on the must do list.

Easy booking. Still got pick up and drop back to accommodation. When we arrived at Highlands we noticed that they had changed the table layout and it was very cramped with long tables and seating packed hard alongside each other. Made it really difficult to move from the table and also poor viewing for the show.

We were within the last 10 people queuing for our meal. Took a while as they ran out of plates and then cutlery. We had to request plates and cutlery as none of the staff were watching out for this. There was only very small servings available by this stage as they had obviously under catered. The meat was really nice but not enough for a decent meal.

The show was really good although it was lacking in numbers on the stage compared to our previous trip. Once again Danny was great as the host for the night.

Hopefully with a few tweaks and maybe some extra crew Highlands can shine once again.
Written 1 July 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Angus Stewart
Auckland, New Zealand185 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021 • Friends
The best cultural show by far on the island, set in one of the most spiritual and beautiful destinations on the island. Thoroughly recommend the evening show and dinner , but also to visit by day and do the garden tour as the views are magnificent . The dinner is traditional umu style and delicious , the show performed by the islands best dance troupe and drummers. Highlight of our stay and also others whom we met & recommended go there too. Great for all ages .
Written 28 July 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

StephG
5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2023 • Couples
Fantastic experience hearing authentic stories on the history of the land where Highland Paradise is located. We were absolutely blown away by the host Danny, he was an incredible story teller with a impressive depth of knowledge on the history of the island and his own lineage.
The cultural show was headlined by young people that were highly skilled dancers and musicians. Guests were able to walk through the site and hear first hand stories from Danny, bring big spray! Food was traditional, so could be challenging for some, but well worth every penny! A must do!
Written 21 January 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Brian R
Wellington, New Zealand49 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2022
was looking for a cultural night thing and Highland Paradise did not disappoint, price included pick and drop off from accommodation, dinner which was very tasty and plenty to eat, had a quick tour the marae as weather was not the best but very informative on local history. The best bit was the performance by the young people from the marae - excelent dacing skills and excellent musicians - dont know how the drummers do what they do but it is done well. Overall a very enjoyable experience and throughly recommended.
Written 8 March 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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HIGHLAND PARADISE DRUMS OF OUR FOREFATHERS SUNSET CULTURE SHOW (Rarotonga) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

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