Blogs from Nuku Hiva, French Polynesia, Oceania

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Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva May 7th 2019

‘Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.’ – Gustave Flaubert Another day at sea before our final port of call. At about mid-day the Captain announced that we were about to pass the Islands of Great Disappointment. Back in the 18th century an expedition team had spent months at sea before landing on these islands in order to replenish supplies. They were greatly disappointed as they couldn’t even find suitable drinking water and so were named this group of islands!! Like most places that have a bad reputation, a publicist is employed and shortly thereafter a make-over ensues. This would usually include a name change to sound more appealing. Perhaps change the islands name from the Islands of Great Disappointment to the islands of Great Surprise. The surprise ... read more
The bay of Taiohae
Nuku Hiva piping our arrival on to the island
A Nuku Hivan dog too thirsty to worry about our arrival

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva October 31st 2017

Our seven day crossing of the Pacific Ocean took us across the equator to our first destination of Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas Islands. We have been here a number of times as it is the first substantial piece of land encountered cruising south. Because Nuku Hiva is mountainous, the ship’s radar can pick up its image about 97 miles away according to Captain Roberts. As we came around the corner and sailed into the lovely curved bay, the green hillsides and anchored boats were quite a change from seeing only waves for so many days. We took our first of many tender rides from ship to shore. Few of these remote islands have docks or piers for visiting cruise ships. Most of the wharves here were built by Sea Bees during WWII. Of the 12 ... read more
THE SOJOURN IN PARADISE
TENDER
OUR TRUSTY TENDER DRIVER

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva June 8th 2015

never watched survivor but found it interesting that this is where it was filmed. This island is far removed from everywhere. We took a private tour with Jocelyne and she drove us to a few nice look out points and gave a very good narrative at the same time. By the end of our three and a half hours it started to rain so we were lucky to get some good viewings and photos from the overlooks. Love the way the horses, cows, chickens and pigs are free to roam around. Much caution is needed when driving here. We will be at sea for the next four days as we sail our way to the Hawaiian Islands. We will be home in 30 days and as a fellow passenger stated, "we have to prepare for reentry!" ... read more
Boys in the Band
Our Home is in the Harbor
Bougainvillea

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 » Nuku Hiva May 6th 2012

Nuku Hiva is the main island of the Marquesas Islands, and contains the capital in the settlement of Taiohae. This is the only island that we visited of the 15 islands in the Marquesas, which is part of French Polynesia, and it was mainly just a place for us to refuel and have a few days off. This island once had a population of somewhere between 50,000 to 150,000 people, depending on who you ask, but the population is now down to around 3,000 inhabitants. The Marquesas were extremely hard hit by diseases introduced by the European and American sailors that 'discovered' the islands, which had really been settled for thousands of years. The first thing that I noticed about Nuku Hiva is how rugged the terrain is. There are many steep cliffs around the island, ... read more
Entrance to Taihoe Bay
Taihoe Bay
Bell Tower in Taipivai Valley

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva May 4th 2012

The Vaipo Falls are meant to be the largest waterfall in Polynesia, outside of Hawaii and New Zealand, standing 1148ft tall. The journey to get to the falls, although not a very strenuous hike, was quite an interesting jaunt into a very isolated sector of a very isolated island. The falls are located in the Hakaui Valley, which is only accessible by boat from as far as I could tell. Nuku Hiva's coastline is very rugged, and so is much of the interior of the island. Our trip began as we took our tender from Taiohae Bay over to Daniel's Bay. We had read that Daniel was a local guy that helped out sailors passing through by giving them access to fresh water. As we found out an update later in the day, Daniel was dead, ... read more
Daniel's Bay
Gate to the 'Neighborhood'
Main Street in the Valley

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva March 1st 2012

For most of us it was probably an illustration in a book or perhaps a movie. A glimpse of a sandy beach, nodding palm trees and the surf crashing on a reef off shore. There might even have been a black hulled schooner bobbing at anchor…waiting for her next adventure. For the rest of our lives, especially on cold winter days, those images come flooding back when we hear the word “paradise”. Don't despair…I can safely tell you that paradise does exist. It isn’t pristinely pure but it’s all here. The beautiful azure water, the surf pounding on the barrier reef, riots of colorful fish, powdery white sand, palm trees, and the scent of flowers in the air to name just a few of the pleasures. We have visited islands in the last couple of months ... read more
Milton
Milton in his shop
Milton Projects

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva March 1st 2012

For most of us it was probably an illustration in a book or perhaps a movie. A glimpse of a sandy beach, nodding palm trees and the surf crashing on a reef off shore. There might even have been a black hulled schooner bobbing at anchor…waiting for her next adventure. For the rest of our lives, especially on cold winter days, those images come flooding back when we hear the word “paradise”. Don't despair…I can safely tell you that paradise does exist. It isn’t pristine pure but it’s all here. The beautiful azure water, the surf pounding on the barrier reef, riots of colorful fish, powdery white sand, palm trees, and the scent of flowers in the air to name just a few of the pleasures. We have visited islands in the last couple of months ... read more
Milton at work
Milton in his shop
Milton projects

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva July 9th 2011

If you could use one word to explain a place; I would use mystical for Nuku Hiva. On arrival we pulled into a small bay, the backdrop was filled with volcanic peaks thrusting into the sky while being enveloped by a lush green tropical rainforest. The swells had picked up and the cliffs that overlooked the sea where being thrashed by waves whilst the power of the ocean splashed high into the sky and against the rocky landscape. True to our nature, we dropped anchor just as fast as we hit land to explore. 5 of us rented an island truck, packed a cooler of beer and with no map and no plan started driving. Our truck was heading uphill on the only road we could find. Nuku Hiva is the second largest island in the ... read more
Spotting of our first wild horse
Us overlooking the Bay
Nuku Hiva Landscape

Oceania » French Polynesia » Nuku Hiva June 30th 2011

And so I find myself 12 days into our long voyage across the Pacific Ocean. 12 days may not seem long. Let me assure you…….it is. The first few days were rough and I mean this in every sense of the word. Seas were hitting our bow head on. The motion of this front to back bobbing and constant throwing of your body sent most of us into a sea-sick fury. Running for our beds and Dramamine to sleep off the nausea and hoping to wake to a calmer swell. As the hours faded into days, the seas eventually cooled and we set comfort into our daily routines while cruising the big blue. We sit navigational watch 8 hours a day. I have the unfortunate schedule of 12-4 in the day and 12-4 at night. These ... read more
We caught dinner...
Chasing our wake
Sunset Underway




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