Rarotonga is a small volcanic island in the South Pacific, the largest and most populated island of the Cook Islands archipelago that had 14,153 inhabitants in 2006 and which is the capital of the country, Avarua. The island is approximately at the geographic coordinates of 21 °0'S 160 °0'W. It houses the parliament buildings of the Cook Islands and the Rarotonga International Airport. Because Potonga is the most populated island, the islanders are sometimes spoken of as rarotongans, although they may come from one of the other 15 islands, such as Aitutaki or Mangaia. Rarotonga rises 4,500 meters from the ocean floor. The perimeter of the island measures about 32 km. Approximately 4,000 meters deep, the volcano is about 50 km in diameter.
The point of the island at the highest elevation above sea level is 658 meters. The main population center of the island, known as Avarua, is the administrative center of the Cook Islands, which also has an international airport. There is the cultivation of fruit trees.