Constitution Day in the Cook Islands Date in the current year: August 4, 2024

Constitution Day in the Cook Islands Citizens of the Cook Islands annually celebrate Constitution Day on August 4. The holiday celebrates the day, when the Islands declared a self-governing nation in a free association with New Zealand.

The Cook Islands became a British protectorate in 1888. The islanders were afraid, that France might occupy the territory of the islands, that is why the leaders of the Cook Islands asked Britain to annex the islands as British territory. The islands were included to the boundaries of the Colony of New Zealand in 1901.

The Cook Islands remained as dependent territory till 1965. On August 4, the government declared a self-governing status in a free association with New Zealand. This means, that the government of the islands is responsible for making the laws. But New Zealand is responsible for defense and external affairs of the Cook Islands.

Constitution Day is a very popular holiday. Since 2001 it's called Te Maeva Nui, that means “a great celebration”. By the way, Constitution Day is the major holiday in the islands. Different activities and events are organized on this day and on the days following the holiday.

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