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Tropical Sands

Beach at Sunrise
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Tropical Sands
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About

4.5
#1 of 2 ranches in Avarua
4.3 of 5 bubbles
Location
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.7 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.7 of 5 bubbles
Value
Self Contained Bungatows
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Property amenities
Free parking
Wifi
Beach
Bicycles available
Airport transportation
Non-smoking hotel
Sun deck
24-hour check-in
Parking
Paid wifi
Golf course
Canoeing offsite
Patio
Shuttle bus service
Sun loungers / beach chairs
First aid kit
Umbrella
Laundry service
Room features
Safe
Sofa
Bottled water
Clothes rack
Coffee / tea maker
Flatscreen TV
Sofa bed
Walk-in shower
Iron
Private bathrooms
Kitchenette
Microwave
Refrigerator
Stovetop
Electric kettle
Kitchenware
Bath / shower
Complimentary toiletries
Hair dryer
Room types
Mountain view
Ocean view
Non-smoking rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
Star ratings are intended to indicate the general level of features, amenities, and services to expect. This property is classified according to Giata.
3.0 of 5 stars
HOTEL STYLE
Quaint
Mid-range
Languages Spoken
English
Hotel links
Special Rate:Enjoy Tropical Sands by booking Direct!
57Reviews1Q+A18Room tips

Reviews
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Detailed Reviews
ebinde wrote a review Apr 2022
Timaru, New Zealand490 contributions52 helpful votes
Property's Favourite Review
5.0 of 5 bubbles
If moonlight on the ocean and the sound of the surf breaking a stone’s throw from your porch or balcony is your idea of relaxation, then Tropical Sands in Rarotonga may be as pleasant for you as we found it.

There are many restaurants a short ride away by bus, taxi or rental. We often ate in using the nearby convenience store and the ample kitchen in our unit. There is a nearby night market with many food offerings.

Owners Rudy and Kanoe made us most welcome. Our unit was comfortable with screened windows open for the ocean breezes.

There is a small coffee shop nearby with coffee ground and roasted on site. They are open daily from 7:30 to 10. Be sure to go early on Wednesday, Friday or Sunday when a variety of fresh pastries and bread are available.
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Date of stay: April 2022Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Tropical Sands is happy to help schedule a shuttle from the airport.
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.
Lor16 wrote a review Oct 2020
Newbridge, Ireland18 contributions39 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We stayed here while on honeymoon. We stayed in the upstairs accommodation with a beach view. We were pleasantly surprised with our accommodation. While basic, it had everything we needed and we loved being able to eat outside on our balcony facing the sea. The hosts were fantastic, very welcoming and went out of their way to make sure we enjoyed our stay. While the location is a little out of the way, it is only a short 10-15 min walk from amenities and there is a bus stop near by.
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Date of stay: November 2019Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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.
Carol M wrote a review Jul 2022
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Hosts are very helpful and make you feel right at home. Bungalow was very clean and comfortable with everything you needed for cooking etc.Large fridge and lots of space to move around. Every Bungalow seems to have veiw of beach,gorgeous gardens .
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Date of stay: July 2022Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: Tropical sands, only downer was no milk provided and there is no b.b Q.But totally understand why...
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.
Response from Rudy Aquino, Owner at Tropical Sands
Responded 13 Jul 2022
Meitaki Ma'ata (Thank you), For your great review and we're so happy that your holiday was full of beautiful memories and hope that you'll return to our little paradise again.
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Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.
birgitella7 wrote a review Feb 2015
Bad Homburg, Deutschland55 contributions55 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Tropical Sands is a paradies! We stood there for 2 weeks and wished we would have booked for a longer stay. The bungalow is very well equipped, nothing was missing even for a longer stay, the mattresses have been very comfortable, so that we slept extremely well. Everything inside the house and outside in the garden and at the beach was very clean and spacious. Towels and bedsheets have been changed frequently.
To sit on the poarch and to listen to the waves of the sea and the rustling of the palm trees was a top relaxation for us. We looked for hours on the sea and the beach, it was amazing. You cannot swim directly in front of the resort, but only a few kilometers away you find the wonderful beaches of Muri or Fruits of Rarotonga for snorkeling. In the Tropical Sands the atmosphere is absolute calm and peaceful, the artistically designed garden and beach are wonderful and unique. Heidi and Rudy are very charming and friendly hosts who made our stay unforgettable.
Although the regular busses stop directly in front of the entrance, we recommend to rent a car or a bike in order to be more flexible to see the beauties of Rarotonga or to dine in one of the excellent restaurants on the island. If possible, do not miss a concert of Rudy; you will love his music.
The organisation of our transport from and to the airport was perfect.
We did not miss anything during our holidays and can highly recommend Tropical Sands for wonderful holidays.
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Date of stay: February 2015
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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.
BiddyNZ wrote a review Aug 2014
Dunedin, New Zealand278 contributions86 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Unit 1 is right at the front, on the beach. The reef is very close here (3.0km north of Muri) and the waves really crash along. And in whale migration season, August, they are just there, really close.
The remaining units sit back, and look at the sea alongside or past unit 1. Unit 1 ADSL has a really protected deck at the front, and a spare single room.

Nice place, but you have to hop on your scooter and head 3km to Muri if you want to snorkel or swim - you really can't do it in the skills bit of lagoon in front of the resort.

Friendly hosts, nothing is too much trouble.

Clean, quiet, safe. A really nice family location.
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Date of stay: August 2014
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
3.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled with friends
Room Tip: Seriously, pay the bit extra and get the beachfront (not beach view) unit - unit 1.
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.
CLR003 wrote a review Jan 2014
Sydney, Australia15 contributions18 helpful votes
3.0 of 5 bubbles
We (22yr old couple) stayed here for one night between Aitutaki and flying back to Sydney. We booked through hotels.com. We turned up early to ask when we could check in to be told they had no record of us booking.. Fortunately they had a spare room they made up for us. The rooms were really very nice, they had a FULL kitchen with all utensils you need, a comfy bed, nice clean bathroom and a lounge area with TV and stocked book shelf. The resort is small, only a few rooms, but really nice - it has a raised deck built for you to look out at the ocean. The downside is the location, you cannot swim at the beach (rocks) or even walk on the sand without shoes. Luckily we had hired a car at the airport so we could go elsewhere to swim. After staying at the Sanctuary Rarotonga for the first half of our holiday and having full access to the lagoon on our doorstep this was disappointing and would mean that I wouldn't return to this resort.
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Date of stay: January 2014
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
3.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
3.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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.
SydneyPerla wrote a review Dec 2013
Sydney553 contributions599 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Kia Orana - this warm welcome in the middle of the night (as many international flights arrive around midnight) makes you happy immediately.

Ever fancied a room with a view/ a cabin with a view? Well, you will love TROPICAL SANDS.
The ocean is right in front of the cabins and at night time you can hear the waves crashing against the rocks. Amazing.
Kanoe and Rudy are simply gorgeous people who make your stay unforgettable. You feel like home away from home. Thank you, Kanoe and Rudy, and KIA ORANA!
The cabin (we booked the Beach Studio) is spacious and spotless clean. There are basically two rooms with two double beds and two separate bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen and a terrace you dont wanna leave as you can see the waves rolling into the beach.
Muri Beach is just around the corner although you cannot walk there. The two bus routes stop in front of TROPICAL SANDS (clockwise and anti-clockwise buses are the two services) but you can also hire a car. Its nice to discover the island in your own pace and you can stop wherever you like (plus: the buses are only kind of frequent during the week and till 4pm).
There is space to park the car at Tropical Sands.
Rudy and Kanoe can also help you with organizing your days as they have a lot of insider tipps plus you can organise a shuttle service to and from the airport (15 NZD per person, single trip).
Tropical Sands offers also an open air barbecue, sun beds and sunny open air terrace to watch the sunrise, to take a sunbathe or simply to enjoy the sea breeze.
It is a gorgeous place to stay. So dont waste your time searching for the right spot. THIS IS THE RIGHT SPOT :-)
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Date of stay: December 2013
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: Beach Studio with sea view There is another cabin facing the sea directly (maybe more expensive?...
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.
twotaurus wrote a review Jan 2011
Paradise Island, New Providence Island33 contributions37 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Loved this place. It has a proper island vibe, great value and clean. There's no swimming beach, just wild ocean but it's a truly atmospheric location. The gardens are beautiful and the hosts are chilled. We had the beachfront room which was point blank on the pacific.
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Date of stay: December 2010
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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.
Codiak! wrote a review Mar 2018
Abbotsford, Canada10,890 contributions650 helpful votes
+1
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Tropical Sands Resort

Let’s start with the positives before detailing all that went wrong. Their rooms are large and well appointed as are the grounds. They also have a couple of old bicycles you can borrow if you want to explore, and the busses stop once an hour in front of their place at scheduled times — mostly on time (the longest we had to wait was 30 minutes past the scheduled time on a very rainy day.) The beach is great for walking and is really empty. When you walk up and down it, it is rare to see another person. Be aware that it isn’t suitable for swimming. We stayed a total of 13 nights.

This resort is a Bluesky Hot Spot so Wi-Fi is available for a fee. I paid $25 the first time and $20 the next time as there was a promo. Of the 13 days I could access the Wi-Fi network only a couple of days. To get connected required a bus ride to a reliable Hot Spot @$5.00 per person, per ride each way.

Unknown to us when we booked — and why I am telling you here — is that there is another resort being built right next door so there are nail guns, circular saws, and a backhoe making a racket between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday. They are also burning materials and the smoke wafts over. One group scheduled to stay a week checked out after one day and demanded their money back. When they left we were told that the resort would pay for our taxi ride to the airport when we were ready to leave to compensate for the noise. This is worth $40 NZD. Although my wife confirmed this with the management on 2 separate occasions, when it came time to leave, we were told to pay for the taxi ourselves. The busses were not an option because they were not running on Good Friday.

Tip: Bring some New Zealand cash with you as few places take your credit card and sometimes if they do they have they same connectivity issues as Bluesky and your card can be declined “Issuer Not Available.”
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Date of stay: March 2018
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
4.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
2.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
Room Tip: Facing the ocean is best
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.
Jana H wrote a review Nov 2016
Christchurch, New Zealand22 contributions8 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
We've just arrived back from our 8 night stay at Tropical Sands, we stayed in the Manutai Ocean Beach Studio.

Our transport to and from the airport was organised (we arrived at 1am, and had to leave at 1130pm), our room was all ready for us when we arrived, no hassles at all.

While you can't swim on the beach, the buses are always reliable, with both clockwise and anticlock wise going past at 10-20 past the hour and you can get on and off where ever you like. Majority of the bus drivers know where tropical sands is, so they stop right outside the door if you ask nicely (best to get out there a few minutes early). Muri is a short bike ride away, and there are two bikes at Tropical Sands you can use which do the job well!

There was milk, coffee and sugar provided (although I didn't see the sugar and got our own the first day, woops!) and towels are changed every 4 days, which is absolutely fine for us. There is a fan provided which worked wonders on the night there was a tropical thunderstorm and it was SUPER hot!

There are hermit crabs all over the beach / around our bungalow, so we had to watch out where we stood, especially at night, this isn't a downside - it was actually really cool to watch the crabs! Sometimes, mainly at night or in the morning, there are 100s walking around! It's a very neat site to see!

The view from the bedroom was really nice! Falling asleep to the sounds of waves and the smell of the sea was so nice!

The shower doesn't have a steady flow, but I think that may be true for much of the island. It didn't really bother me as I just wanted to rinse of the sweat / salt / sand from the day and get out!

I really loved this property, the friendly owners, and although one tour company said we were far away from anything (we got sent a special van just to pick us up as everyone else was at resorts etc) it's really only a 10 minute (if not less!) bike ride to Muri, and there is a shop just down the road (although unsure of hours as we didn't go there). Of course there is room for scooters / car if you hire them.

There is a bluesky (wifi) hotspot which reached our bungalow, but we didn't use it because we had a local simcard. You can buy wifi from the owners, I believe.
Thanks! :)
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Date of stay: November 2016
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
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.
Answer from Mitch P
Paphos, Cyprus149 contributions38 helpful votes
I don’t know when it changed hands but the current owners are American, from Hawaii. They are extremely friendly and efficient.
Carol M wrote a tip Jul 2022
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Tropical sands, only downer was no milk provided and there is no b.b Q.But totally understand why not.People seem to think it's not there job to clean up for next person "
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ebinde wrote a tip Apr 2022
Timaru, New Zealand490 contributions52 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Tropical Sands is happy to help schedule a shuttle from the airport."
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Codiak! wrote a tip Mar 2018
Abbotsford, Canada10,890 contributions650 helpful votes
3.0 of 5 bubbles
"Facing the ocean is best"
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Malachy M wrote a tip Mar 2018
Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand34 contributions17 helpful votes
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"Some units have very good sea views and one is even raised up on piles so view probably even better up there."
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Nelson_R wrote a tip Nov 2017
Canada34 contributions23 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"I stayed in #4 which was very nice, ground level with ocean view, I will try #5 next time as it is elevated"
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PRICE RANGE
$167 - $198 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
LOCATION
Cook IslandsSouthern Cook IslandsRarotongaAvarua
NUMBER OF ROOMS
5
Prices are provided by our partners for one room, with variable occupancy rules as provided by the property, and reflect total costs of the stay, including all taxes and fees known to our partners. Please see our partners for more details.
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TROPICAL SANDS - Ranch Reviews & Price Comparison (Avarua, Cook Islands) - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Tropical Sands
Which popular attractions are close to Tropical Sands?
Nearby attractions include Titikaveka Beach (5.2 km), Te Rua Manga (The Needle) (6.1 km), and Te Vara Nui Village (2.4 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Tropical Sands?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free parking, airport transportation, and a golf course.
Which room amenities are available at Tropical Sands?
Top room amenities include a kitchenette, a flat screen TV, and a refrigerator.
Is parking available at Tropical Sands?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Tropical Sands?
Conveniently located restaurants include The Mooring Fish Cafe Rarotonga, The Waffle Shack, and Vili's Burger Joint.
Does Tropical Sands have airport transportation?
Yes, Tropical Sands offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Are there any historical sites close to Tropical Sands?
Many travellers enjoy visiting Wreck of the Matai (5.5 km).
Does Tropical Sands have any great views?
Yes, guests often enjoy the ocean view available here.
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