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The Cook Islands lie in the centre of the Polynesian triangle, just north of the Tropic of Capricorn. Twelve of the fifteen islands are inhabited, with the largest, Rarotonga, being home to over half the population.
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240 volts. Some hotels have 110 volt AC plugs for shavers.
The Cook Islands, situated just west of the International Dateline, is nine hours behind Greenwich Mean Time and six hours behind New York.
The unit of currency is the New Zealand dollar. The Cook Islands also have their own very interesting currencies and coins (only exchangeable in the Cooks) which are interchangeable with the New Zealand dollar. Currency Converter. The dollar coin and three dollar bill are popular souvenirs. Westpac and ANZ Banks in Avarua are open weekdays from 9am to 3 pm and the airport bank is open when flights are going or coming. Major credit cards/travellers cheques are accepted at most shops and restaurants. Offshore banking facilities also available.
The capital Avarua is situated on Rarotonga, and is the main administrative, commercial and service centre.
Tourism is the major revenue earner for the country, with 50,000 tourists arriving annually. Other export industries include fresh fruit, copra, soaps, perfumes, coffee, black pearls and clothing. The Cook Islands is an international and offshore banking centre offering a range of financial services, including an offshore tax haven. The country's main trading partner is New Zealand.