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“Wonderful trip”

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Sunrise Beach Bungalows
Reviewed August 10, 2013

We stopped off in Raro on our way to New Zealand. Caryn offered to pick us up at the airport including my golf clubs! This is typical of both her and Brian, nothing is too much trouble for them.

Let's get this straight from the start, this is Rarotonga in the Cook Islands, an idilic setting in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. We booked an Ocean front Bungalow and that is exactly what we got. The accommodation was clean and tidy, Caryn made sure we were happy once we had moved in, double checking that we had everything we needed.

The Bungalows are just a few meters from the waters edge looking out to the coral reef and the constant wash of the breaking waves.

So the location and accommodation were spot on, a short walk to Muri Beach where you can find cafes and places to eat or get a great flat white coffee made this a fantastic place for our trip.

I have looked at a couple of the negative reviews which are very unfair to Brian and Caryn. They work extremely hard to accommodate all the needs of their clients. It must be remembered this is the Cook Islands, not Monte Carlo! Not that there is anything wrong with either location, (yes I have been to both) except they are different. My preference is Sunrise every time. If you want all the glitz of a pretentious 5 star hotel you have booked the wrong location. This is a fantastic place, but you have to accept you are on a 'desert island' with limited access to some of the refinement you may be used to.

Caryn makes up for the inevitable lack of facilities with a wonderful attitude which will ensure your stay is thoroughly enjoyable. The Bungalows may be considered basic, but you are on holiday, so eating out or getting a take-away is what you should be doing rather than slaving over a hot stove. Perhaps that is why there isn't one!!

The Sunrise Bungalows are exactly what they say they are, a wonderful retreat right on the waters edge, but don't expect 5 star Monte Carlo glitz, your in the wrong place.

One final observation, which sums up both Brian and Caryn, was when they offered us the use of their spare car. Well it was, how can I put this politely? "Functional" sorry Caryn! (no Rolls Royces on Rarotonga), but it helped us get about on several occasions bearing the 30 mph speed limit and about 50 minutes to circumnavigate the island, a nice gesture.

Caryn and Brian will do their utmost to make you feel at home and have an enjoyable stay, genuine, honest, hard working hosts.

Thank you, Ken and Pam

Room Tip: go for the beach bungalows
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank boybeorge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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121 - 127 of 219 reviews

Reviewed August 6, 2013

we stayed with Caryn, for 3 weeks in July 2013, we had the most wonderful time, and Caryn went out of her way to make our stay a great experience.
The property is very pretty and the grounds and swimming pool absolutely fantastic.
Our room was very neat and clean and serviced every three days.

Room Tip: depend what you like, the beach front is lovely but we prefferred no 6 which is a garden bungalow wh...
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  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank graza_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 3, 2013

We really enjoyed our stay, the view...waking up to the ocean right outside...perfect. The accommodation is basic but clean and the rates are very reasonable. Caryn and Brian who run the place are very helpful and bend over backwards to help make your holiday a good one. They offer a free pick up service from the airport and for us our out gong flight was not until the early hours of the morning so when we checked out they offered that since the room we had been using was available until the next day we could use the room for the day at no charge. That the sort of people they are in fact there info pack in the rooms says they only have one rule...ASK...and that is how we found them to be. The location is great too, if you have transport it is 2min from muri beach but even if you don't it is an easy walk to muri and the restaurants/cafes and of coarse the beautiful beach.
We loved it and would happily return and recommend others to go and stay.
Looking at some of the other reviews I notice there has been some not so happy customers but maybe their problems have been due to unclear communication or maybe they were expecting 4star service, this is basic, clean, well priced accommodation.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank Jenny G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 3, 2013

What a delightful stay with a local person who went out of her way to ensure we made the most of Rarotonga. Her local knowledge was invaluable. She made sure we got the best value rental car deal and found the kind of restaurants we preferred.. Being met and delivered to and from the airport was such a plus. Elizabeth

Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
1  Thank William3379
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2013

We had 8 days at Sunrise in June this year, and I want to go back.
Caryn and Brian made every effort to look after us without ever being intrusive.
Our bungalow was perfect for us; it isn't five star, but neither are the prices. There is everything that you need for a comfortable, relaxing stay. In fact, you could do a lot worse than just sit on your deck with a drink (G&T for us) & watch the waves break over the reef 100 metres out.
It's only a 15 minute walk into Muri, but far enough away that you won't have people wandering through your view. The local bus is a good option if you're not in a hurry, and you'll meet the locals coming & going.
The beach out front is not suitable for swimming, but with a pair of reef shoes you can walk right out to the reef, where the locals like to fish.
Don't forget to call in to the Moorings Cafe at Avana Harbour, just off the road into Muri, for the best fish sandwich you will ever eat.
All in all, pretty well perfect. We loved it.

Room Tip: I think we had Bungalow #3. It's the closest to the beach, so a little more private.
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  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Dick T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 11, 2013

We chose to stay at Sunrise Beach Bungalows for our first holidays in Rarotonga and we were glad to stay there! Caryn and Brian are really welcoming and helpfull people. They take good care of there host :) We had a bungalow with sea vue and we loved it! Every day we had a glass of wine on our terrace...really relaxing :) Perfect place to do that! Moreover, the Muri lagoon is close and reachable by foot.
I, therefore, recommend you to stay there, especially if you are in couple :)

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Caroline L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 3, 2013

This was our first visit to Rarotonga and we certainly enjoyed it, not least because of the friendly atmosphere at Sunrise. Caryn and Brian made us welcome with a free airport pick-up and first breakfast. We had to move after our first night in order to fix the roof on our first cottage but this was done simply and without any fuss.

The cottages have all you need. Being right on the sea there is a pleasant breeze plus a ceiling fan to keep you cool. The pool is great and we had it to ourselves whenever we wanted a swim. Snorkel gear was there for us to borrow, although we had to walk about a km to Muri to be able to swim in the lagoon.

TV was not great and the Wi-Fi was a bit inconsistent but these seem to be symptomatic of the island rather than Sunrise.

We would love to be able to return!

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank J_M30a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sunrise Beach Bungalows

Address: Main Rd, Sunrise Beach, Cook Islands
Phone Number:
Location: Cook Islands > Southern Cook Islands > Rarotonga
Hotel Style:
Ranked #32 of 80 Specialty Lodging in Rarotonga
Price Range: $87 - $130 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Sunrise Beach Bungalows 3*
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Absolute oceanfront ocean and garden bungalows and 2 bedroom family house.9m from Muri Lagoon fully self catering bring yourselves and your bagsset in 4800 square metres of sand and garden privateswimming pool gas bbeque tour desk complimentary snokelling equipmentideal for groups families and couples ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sunrise Beach Bungalows Hotel Rarotonga

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