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“Space lends itself well to large exhibitions.”

Cook Islands Library & Museum
Ranked #4 of 21 things to do in Avarua
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This museum contains a collection of artwork and historical artifacts including weapons, carvings and costumes.
Reviewed January 30, 2014

As the title of this Museum implies, it is run by government being a national asset or facility. This venue is not to be confused with the small private museum situated 100 metres away, which is attached to the Cook Islands Library, opposite the USP campus. Many of the reviews below actually refer to that museum in error.

The National Museum retains a small permanent collection of artefacts either gifted or on loan as subjects of national and historical importance. These heirlooms are also used as art objects to support major exhibitions and cultural installations on several occassions each year.

I attended one of the annual Tivaevae displays last year, created by several individuals and local women's embroidery groups. These large pieces were all magnificently displayed, and well were suited to the lofty height of this large arena. For anyone interested in material manifestations of Cook Islands culture, do not miss a Tivaevae heirloom display.

I also reviewed the work of some amateur photographers and local artists at an earlier exhibition within the same venue. Again the chosen location was used to good effect. A gold coin entry fee is requested.

2  Thank Frangipani08
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"entry fee"
in 6 reviews
"cook islands"
in 25 reviews
"interesting things"
in 4 reviews
"worth a visit"
in 7 reviews
"on display"
in 4 reviews
"space program"
in 2 reviews
"for sale"
in 4 reviews
"south pacific"
in 2 reviews
"artifacts"
in 19 reviews
"history"
in 38 reviews
"photos"
in 9 reviews
"information"
in 21 reviews
"insight"
in 5 reviews
"shelves"
in 2 reviews
"nominal"
in 2 reviews
"browsing"
in 2 reviews
"range"
in 2 reviews
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76 - 80 of 103 reviews

Reviewed January 27, 2014

Although small, this little museum gives a nice background of the Cook Islands people, the culture, and how the missionaries changed the culture of the people. Some very interesting stories and displays to give one a better appreciation of the island. If your in town, take the half hour or so that it takes to peruse the museum. On your way, check out the cemetery on the left. It houses the first premier of the Cook Islands. There is a bust of him that sits atop his grave as well as one in the museum.

2  Thank tmboc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 7, 2013

Very modest little museum. Some very interesting artefacts, to be sure, but the displays look like they haven't changed in about 40 years. I mainly visited because I was keen to see some genuine tivaevae, the traditional Cook Islands quilts. There were four on display when I visited, they were beautiful, and it was worth going to see them because of my particular interest in the subject.

Otherwise, I'd recommend the museum mainly just for history buffs and the like. For natural history and with kids you'd be better off heading to the Whale and Wildlife Centre on the outskirts of town.

$5 to get in, photographs not allowed, and you'll be done in an hour.

3  Thank lonealbatross
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 5, 2013

There's not a lot to see in this museum but to be sure, there are a number of items of interest, including a Royal Visit or two. There is an original Union Jack flag which frightened off the French, quite a gem! We felt that our entry fee might have made a small contribution towards an upgrade, which would be good for this establishment.

2  Thank Don M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 11, 2013

This was a nice surprise. The museum is housed in the library which brings back nostalgic days of catalog cards and the likes. The museum is basic but does have some nice exhibits. Worth visiting!

2  Thank lxchin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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