THE BEAUTY OF TAHITI


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Oceania » French Polynesia » Moorea
November 7th 2017
Published: November 8th 2017
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MAGIC MOUNTAINMAGIC MOUNTAINMAGIC MOUNTAIN

Mount Mouaroa on Moorea
No matter how many times we have been to Tahiti, the stunning beauty of these idyllic islands never ceases to amaze us. I don’t believe that the exquisite colors of the water can be adequately described in words nor can the spirit of island peoples be explained without experiencing it. Mana is the Polynesian term for the inner spirit that pervades the Tahitian approach to life and living. When you are here you can see with your own eyes the translucent aqua, turquoise, teal, azure, blue and green of the ocean and lagoons framed against the towering mountains and shimmering reefs all the while breathing in the air scented with the flowery perfume of frangiapani and tiara flowers. And if you are fortunate enough, you will feel the mana in your soul.

We sailed into Moorea’s Opunohu Bay at daybreak. This gorgeous island served as the inspiration for James Michener’s book, “Tales of the South Pacific.” This is the Bali Hai of Bloody Mary. Seeing it makes you want to talk some happy talk and have a few enchanted evenings.

We tendered ashore and arranged for a $5 van ride to Les Tipaniers Resort. This low-key resort has small
CAPTAIN TIM ROBERTSCAPTAIN TIM ROBERTSCAPTAIN TIM ROBERTS

Superb Captain gives informative and interesting noon talks
thatched roof bungalows, roaming chickens, slumbering cats and an open-air restaurant overlooking the reef. We spent the day playing in the warm water enjoying the colorful fish and coral. After lunch we flagged down a young man who took us back to the pier while filling us in on his goal to become a successful musician in the islands. This is a perfect day for us on Moorea.

That night the Sojourn sailed over to Papeete, Tahiti. This being the mercantile center for all French Polynesia, Papeete is a beehive of activity day and night. And unlike the other islands, it is becoming famous for its traffic jams and fancy restaurants. As soon as the ship was secured we went ashore to the Place Vaiete which is filled with roulettes serving French, American and Chinese food to locals and tourists alike.

The following day we took our group on an island tour. Our first stop was at the James Norman Hall Home & Museum. The author of "Mutiny on the Bounty" lived in Tahiti and this is where he and co-author Charles Nordhoff wrote their wonderful book. Mr Hall was an American adventurer, decorated soldier, poet and prolific writer. Many of his novels were made into movies. When Marlon Brando was filming Mutiny he fell in love with Polynesia and his beautiful co-star Tarita and proceeded to buy the island of Tetiaroa. Brando settled in with Tarita and raised a family far from the lights of Hollywood. Now the super expensive island resort called The Brando is the hideaway for the rich and famous. President Obama spent a month on the island penning his White House memoirs. The hotel has solar panels and coconut oil generators and uses sea water to run their air conditioners. They hope to be totally power self-sufficient in the near future. In case you want to book a room, the rates start at $2800.00 per night.

Vivian was our guide at the museum and she did a wonderful job telling the story of Hall, his writings and his family life here in paradise. Departing the museum, we were treated to some stunning views around the island and then a fancy lunch at Le Coco, a French/Polynesian restaurant overlooking the ocean and Moorea.

After a quick stop at the Marche Papeete to pick up a few souvenirs, we returned to the Sojourn.
LES TIPANIERS RESORTLES TIPANIERS RESORTLES TIPANIERS RESORT

A perfect place to spend a perfect day on Moorea.
Captain Tim Roberts blew the horn and it was time to head off to the fabled island of Bora Bora.


Additional photos below
Photos: 19, Displayed: 19


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THE WINDSONG SAILING FROM PAPEETETHE WINDSONG SAILING FROM PAPEETE
THE WINDSONG SAILING FROM PAPEETE

Seven day cruise to see all the islands of Tahiti
MASTER CHEF AT THE FOOD TRUCKS MASTER CHEF AT THE FOOD TRUCKS
MASTER CHEF AT THE FOOD TRUCKS

A nightly event on the quay in Papeete
OUR TOUR GUIDE SANDRINEOUR TOUR GUIDE SANDRINE
OUR TOUR GUIDE SANDRINE

She was raised in France by her Tahitian mother.
MUSEUM GUIDE VIVIAN WITH JUDITH AND TOMMUSEUM GUIDE VIVIAN WITH JUDITH AND TOM
MUSEUM GUIDE VIVIAN WITH JUDITH AND TOM

James Norman Hall home and museum. Vivian is a terrific guide.
MARLON AND TARITAMARLON AND TARITA
MARLON AND TARITA

The original poster for "Mutiny on the Bounty" movie in French.
THE BRANDO RESORTTHE BRANDO RESORT
THE BRANDO RESORT

Eco-friendly, exclusive resort on the private island of Tetiaroa


8th November 2017

Hi to Susan and Kevin
I hope that you are enjoying clear sailing after being threatened by hurricanes in Florida and fire in California. I pray that your homes were spared any major damage. The weather certainly has been chaotic and damaging. All is well here. We had unseasonably warm weather in September and October. Now it is unseasonably cold. Lows are in the 20's and highs in the 40's. Looking at the beautiful pictures of Tahiti which show only blue skies and people dressed in sleeveless attire, I am envious of the warm temperatures you are enjoying. The store is already in holiday mode which seems way too early. The season is short so we have to get in the spirit. Boys' soccer is done. They came in 4th in the state. Michael traveled with the team but couldn't play because he had anterior cruciate ligament repair in August due to soccer injury this summer. That was sad because he is a senior. Three of the girls play soccer. The 7th grader is on a competitive traveling team which one 3rd in the country this summer. The four regions competed in Sioux Falls in late June so we commuted from the lake to catch some of the games. Many of the Cannons came out and cheered Kendal's team on. It must have helped because they won the regionals. They are the youngest and smallest in their division so are getting the wind knocked out of their sails a bit this fall. Tom, the football coach, is having his best year. I think that he is 7-2 and heading into the district playoffs this Friday. The weather this fall has been great for football. We've only had to bundle up twice. This Friday, our 8th grade granddaughter is Amaryllis in Music Man. We will watch that and then zip to one high school or the other for football. One change this year is that Tom's football games are streamed. We may have to catch his game that way. Having grandkids in two different high schools is somewhat challenging. We want to split our time at both places equally so we can watch one granddaughter cheer and one dance but it is not always easy.. This Friday night is going to be one of those crazy times. Thankfully, we aren't one of those old couples vegging out on the coach with nothing to do. The holidays are coming up so I'm going to wish you a happy Thanksgiving and a merry Christmas. Enjoy your cruise and beautiful sites. Sandy
8th November 2017

You did it again
Your way with words. Made me home sick for Polynesia-Moorea in particular. As you know, I'm jealous and totally enjoying your blogs. Keep 'em coming. Semper Fi. Dick
8th November 2017

Dick Fowler
Thank you Dick. Always good to hear from a lover of Polynesia. Nothing like it.
8th November 2017

Tahiti this winter
love the photos...David and I will be on Navigator WC...nice to see what will be in store for us. Loved our Silversea cruise, but giving Regent one more try. hope we will see you again one of these days.
8th November 2017

Memories of Moorea and BoraBora
Such an enchanted and exquisite place - Tahiti. Reading your visit made me want to return right then. Jim and I loved Moorea most of all and could have stayed for a lifetime. Thank you for sharing - Travel safe. btw- Headed to Denver tomorrow and will connect with Nancy Wong-Glaser (from PAC-MAC days.) Will share your post with her~
8th November 2017
OUR TOUR GUIDE SANDRINE

You never age
Heading out Friday to board the Explorer in Rome and then 26 days to Miami. Have never been on this ship. Thought you retired! Happy Holidays and sailing
8th November 2017
OUR TOUR GUIDE SANDRINE

Marge and Dave
We hear good things about the Regent Explorer. Have a great cruise. Wish we could join you for paddle tennis!
14th November 2017

"Life is Good"
What a wonderful time, thanks for sharing.
15th November 2017

That time of year again.....
As usual, you make me anticipate our trip even more. You always make the most of your island visits -- always something new to read about. We leave on Jan 2 from Miami to Cape Town on Insignia and then a safari. An administrative request -- can you change our email address for notifications to hengold127@gmail.com as we don't use the old address much any more. All the best... Henry

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