For a balmy clime for a post-wedding unwind, the Cook Islands has heavenly honeymoon written all over it. Home to spectacular natural scenery, incredibly welcoming people, lagoons, waterfalls and lush greenery, it might as well have been put on this earth exclusively for honeymooners.

An island-hopping itinerary is a good bet to road test the range of resorts and activities on offer, which range from yoga retreats to hiking to waterfalls, swimming with sea turtles to kayaking, paddle boarding to pedalling.

Read on for the lowdown on our top tips for accommodation, dining, activities and more - then start counting sleeps!

The Rarotonga rundown

As soon as you arrive at the airport in Rarotonga expect to be greeted with warm smiles and a fresh floral lei - just the ticket to get you into the island way of life.

Rarotonga is the main island, and home to shops, restaurants, markets, massage salons and more.

Exploring is pretty easy, with car, bike and scooters for hire (you'll need a motorbike licence for the latter and if you don't have one you will have  to take a simple $30-odd test on the local netball courts to obtain a 30-day licence).

The Island has a supermarket and coconuts are sold on almost every corner. Hit the Saturday morning Punanga Nui Markets to sample local delicacies, pick up quirky souvenirs and snag some coconut massage oil at more than 130 food and craft stalls. There are also cultural performances including hula dancing and sarong-tying to try your hand at island-life.

Check into a church service

Church is the main event in the Cook Islands every Sunday, and the Cook Islands Christian Church is worth a visit.

Watch locals decked out in their finest belt out hymns and remember to bring a small donation for the end of the service to say thanks for the experience - it's truly worthwhile. If you happen to visit on the first Sunday of the month you'll see everyone in head-to-toe white - quite the spectacle!

Where to stay...

Like many of the Pacific Islands, despite its relatively undeveloped nature, accommodation and meals can be pretty pricey in the Cook Islands, so do your research and plan and book ahead as there are other areas to sample beyond Rarotonga itself.

Te Vakaroa Villas, Rarotonga

The team has stayed at Te Vakaroa Villas, five one and two-bedroom beauties right on Muri Beach which are exclusively for the use of adults and kids over-12.

This is a fab pick for couples as it's never crowded, the beach is at your doorstep and the infinity pool is made for lazy day lounging.

Restaurants, bars, the Muri Beach night markets, sailing boat and paddle board hire, as well as transport hire options are all super close by.

Magnificent Aitutaki

An unmissable Cook Islands experience - true picture-postcard stuff - is Aitutaki. Beg, borrow or steal if you have to, but get there even for a day or two.

When people talk about a ‘honeymoon haven' or ‘tropical island paradise', we're pretty sure this is the spot they're on about. It's so laidback even the locals head there to chill out. It's also not packed with busloads of tourists which is certainly a bonus.

As for what to do when you get to this unbelievably beautiful won't take long to work it out.

Walk on virtually deserted beaches, try your hand on a stand-up paddleboard on the turquoise lagoon, snorkel with colourful fish galore, pack a picnic and cruise the outer get the drift.

Dining Aitutaki-style

Don't leave Aitutaki without eating at Tupuna's Restaurant. The chef is also the owner, who uses local island produce.

Iconic dishes include Chilli Lime Fish served in a coconut shell, and Tupuna's Favourite, an unexpected combo of tuna, cheese and coconut cream baked in banana leaves. If you're lucky you might also find seasonal mud crab on the menu.

Like most restaurants in the Cook Islands, good wine can be hard to find - and super expensive - so it's worth bringing your own if you fancy a tipple while you taste. Rarotonga's bottle shops stock a wide range of New Zealand wines at reasonable prices.

The restaurant at Pacific Resort is another top dining spot, especially at sunset. It's a traditional resort-style spread, but the outlook is to die for.

Delightful deserted islands

One Foot Island is home to the brightest blue waters and the whitest sand this side of Tahiti - giving the Whitsundays' famous Whitehaven Beach a genuine run for its money as the world's best beach.

Vaka Cruises take trips from Aitutaki to One Foot Island (where you can actually get your passport stamped), including a fabulous fresh lunch featuring locally-sourced ingredients, the chance to dip into the lagoon for a spot of snorkelling, and a stop at the location where Survivor Cook Islands was filmed.

A healthy honeymoon option

If health and fitness are a honeymoon priority, why not incorporate a stay at Charlotte Piho's Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga Treat as part of your itinerary?

A unique experience which includes enjoying meals in Charlotte's family home, the program includes a four-hour walk across the island. The climax of the walk is a challenging rock climb to the peak to take in phenomenal panoramic views and a well-earned swim under a waterfall.

Enjoy daily paddleboard yoga lessons, snorkeling  and plenty of fresh fruit and coconuts along the way - it's a fabulous way to escape the everyday.

Packing - Polynesian style

Another benefit of honeymooning island-style (as if you needed more) is that packing is a breeze.

Forget heels and cocktail numbers, all you need are kaftans, swimsuits, sundresses, sandals, a hat and a slew of sunscreen.

And remember to bring closed shoes if you fancy hiking, and something to cover your shoulders if you plan to check into church on Sunday.