Blogs from French Polynesia, Oceania

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Oceania » French Polynesia » Moorea March 20th 2014

This. Place. Is. AMAZING! When we hopped on the ferry boat to head here from Tahiti, we didn't know just how beautiful the island we were approaching would be. There she was, out of the water and clouds like heaven on Earth. Spiking her green and magnificent mountain tops into the air, piercing through a perfect halo of white fluffy clouds, floating there like a dream in the bluest water I've ever seen. So blue, it made you think the colors in the Crayola box crayons were dull and boring. This is like the story books tell us as children, dreaming of far away and exotic lands. When we arrived, we had arranged a stay at the Polynesian (Tiahura) Dream Lodge, a private bungalow home on the lagoon on the West side of the island. Unfortunately, ... read more
Scurfing
Haapiti
ATV Trek

Oceania » French Polynesia » Tahiti » Papeete March 8th 2014

La orana & what a trek! Over a whole day of traveling to get to some of the most spectacular scenery I've EVER seen! It's our honeymoon and our AMAZING wedding took us on this journey to a far away land. Bali-hai had called us! Right now we are here on an island, FAR in the middle of the South Pacific, one known by the name of Tahiti! Technically, we are in Tahiti-iti (little Tahiti), which is a connecting portion of the island know as the home to the world class, world renowned, world's MOST DANGEROUS wave, Teahupoo. We are staying at The Vanira Lodge, in the town of Teahupoo, in their tallest tree house. Immersed in nature, we are surrounded by trees, flowers, and animals of all kinds. We've had birds, geckos, roosters (by the ... read more
Maara Bungalow
Teahupoo Views
Unforgettable

Oceania » French Polynesia » Tahiti » Papeete February 16th 2014

After three weeks of visiting only small pensions we decided to go to the other extreme when we got to Tahiti, the Intercontinental where we stayed is the biggest of the resorts on the island, and one of the most luxurious. We had booked the room with my last remaining reward points from my stay in Harrisburg last winter, and even though our room was free we managed to get upgraded to a room with a ocean view, nice! As the rainy season was catching up with us and the weather was all but sunny, we spent a lot of time on our balcony enjoying the view towards the neighboring island of Moorea that you could actually see through the rain every now and then. Our stay wasn’t just rain and gloom. Our first morning the ... read more
Tahiti - at the resort
Tahiti - The view from our balcony
Moorea - Johanna and the cat watching the sunset

Oceania » French Polynesia » Rangiroa February 10th 2014

French Polynesia stretches over an area roughly the size of Europe (which we certainly couldn’t have guessed before coming here), and contains god knows how many islands, so obviously we cannot cover it all within three weeks, but we tried to include some different islands on our itinerary. Thus, after the mountainous, green Leeward islands, we hopped on yet another flight to reach the Tuamotu atoll islands, Tikehau to be the first destination. Seen from the plane, the atolls look kind of like sandy rings with palm trees on them, filled with turquois water in the middle. But once you are on them, you can’t really tell the shape anymore, as at least TIkehau is so big that you cannot see the opposite edge of the atoll when you are standing on the beach. So, the ... read more
Pension Hotu beach
Tikehau had the prettiest beaches of all the islands we visited so far
palm tree filled beach

Oceania » French Polynesia » Maupiti February 1st 2014

French Polynesia brings up images of blue water, white beaches and green palms. With places like Tahiti, Bora Bora and a lot of atolls we expected the ultimate holiday paradise when we planned our mid-trip “vacation” here, and this far we have not been disappointed. The only trouble we have had is sometimes with getting understood as many people speak no English, so I guess we need to start working on our French to make future trips smoother. ;) It is the perfect place for a beach and snorkeling holiday, if you have other plans, well, go somewhere else! We arrived in the middle of the night to Faaā airport at Tahiti. We had our luggage at around 2 AM, and after checking the price for the nearby hotels (expensive!) we decided to roll out our ... read more
Maupiti - a view from the Mountain
Maupiti - climbing the Mountain
Maupiti - boats

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Oceania » French Polynesia » Tahiti » Papeete January 26th 2014

January 26, 2014 Comments – Oceania Marina Cruise Ship. It would be hard to find a more enjoyable ship to cruise on. Oceania specializes in “ Mature” guests ( that’s what us old people call ourselves ) and there were almost no real young people or children on board. This is not a family cruise line. There were many young couples but mostly retired ( or close to retired ) couples from all over the world. About 1250 capacity, with 800 crew. Oceania has smaller ships, 650 capacity, with the same great food and service but no show lounge. The Marina is beautiful. Lots of space relative to other ships we have been on. There is a nice Show Lounge where various shows are available in the late evening every day. Lots of bars and lounges ... read more
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Oceania » French Polynesia » Rangiroa January 24th 2014

January 24, 2014 Our last full day on board the Oceania Marina. Today we visited Rangiroa, French Polynesia. Another spectacular place. We took a glass bottom boat trip ( Alice ) and Snorkel excursion ( Tom ) to the same reef area not far from the main town. WOW !! Tremendous amount and variety of fish and some large ( 2 Meter ) Eels. Great snorkeling in crystal clear water. Close up swim with Black Tip and White Tip Sharks. A short, few blocks, walk took us to the other side of the atoll and some great views of the ocean surf. The place we were at was a narrow channel from the ocean side into the lagoon side so the surf was spectacular. Many dolphins surfing the big waves. We can see why Rangiroa is ... read more
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Oceania » French Polynesia » Fakarava January 23rd 2014

January 23, 2014 Arrived this morning and on looking out of our stateroom window the first thing that came to mind was; “ Where the Fakarava ?? “ Yes we had arrived in Fakarava, The Island of Dreams. This an atoll about a block or 2 wide but about 60 KM long with only about 800 people total. It appears about 700 are not working as the major hotel is closed for annual maintenance. This turned out to be a great stop, in lieu of the place we were unable to get to. We took a long walk down the main ( almost the only ) road along the beaches. Some good sandy beaches but a lot with coral and rock. Swim shoes, with good soles, are a must here, and most places in Polynesia. We ... read more
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Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva January 22nd 2014

January 20, 21, 22, 2014 Monday was a quiet day at sea. Not too ambitious !! Tuesday we visited Nuku Hiva in the Marquises Islands. Another very beautiful place. Not much activity here as there are only 2600 people on the whole island. We took a 4X4 trip across the mountain to the other side for some great scenery and of course the mandatory stop for “tourist shopping “ at a small village. This evening we had a group of locals come on board for an hour or so of Polynesian dancing and music in the Show Lounge on the ship. Very good show. News today that our planned stop in Hiva Oa, Marquises that was planned for tomorrow will not be possible due to high swells on the ocean and possible difficulty with the tenders ... read more
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Oceania » French Polynesia » Bora Bora January 19th 2014

January 18,19, 2014 Overnight we cruised to Bora Bora for a 2 day stop. No dock here so we had to “ tender” out and back to the ship. This is a very beautiful place with only about 5600 residents primarily supporting the tourist business. As this was a USA supply base in the 1940’s they built a runway that is still used today for inter- island flights. Most of the big names in hotels and resorts have facilities here. Some rooms as much as 10,000.00 US per night. A lot of over-water bungalows. There are a few big hotels that closed in the recent recession and as yet have not reopened. Hope is they will open soon as it is important work for the locals. Also a few that were severely damaged in a storm ... read more
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