Rarotonga's name stems from Raro meaning 'down' and Tonga meaning 'south'. The island is estimated to be 1500 years old, which would put settlement much earlier than the legend of the arrival of Kainuku Ariki. It's considered the emerald jewel of the Pacific offering jagged peaks, deep valleys, fertile slopes of red earth and sparkling aquamarine lagoon. Most visitors to the island enjoy the relaxed atmosphere. It's the classic 19th century European ideal of paradise!