Blogs from French Polynesia, Oceania - page 11


Oceania » French Polynesia » Huahine April 30th 2012

Huahine is part of the Society Islands in French Polynesia, and is one of the lesser developed islands. There are roads, and houses, and it is civilized, but there is not much development in terms of resorts and tourism, which is a good thing, in my opinion. We did not have a ton of time to explore the island, but we made the most of it by renting some scooters and going for a blast around the island. As far as I know, there was only one resort on the island, but I'm sure that there were more lesser known bed and breakfast types of places, 'Pensions', as they're called. Huahine is a place that is frequented by sailboat-cruiser types, and with the convenient barrier reef surrounding a good portion of the island, the nicest way ... read more
Archaeological Site
Fish Traps

Oceania » French Polynesia » Rangiroa April 26th 2012

Rangiroa is the largest atoll in the Tuamotus, and the second largest atoll in the world. There are less than 1,500 permanent residents though. The major attraction to Rangiroa is the underwater life that is enhanced by the strong currents brought by the tides. There are only two main, large, passes (channels) for water to enter the lagoon. There are over a hundred small ones, but only two that you can dive in. Current is life, and no matter when the current is incoming or outgoing, the current is ripping through these passes. The best dives are supposed to be during the incoming tide at the Tiputa Pass, the largest pass on the island. Unfortunately, during our two days in Rangiroa, the incoming tide never came to fruition due to the large south swell that was ... read more
Dolphin Close Range
Silver Tip Upclose
Barracuda Close Range

Oceania » French Polynesia » Moorea April 22nd 2012

Of all the things that my mother has 'instructed' me to do over the years, such as 'brush your teeth' 'comb your hair' 'wear a bicycle helmet', the one that reminded me of her today was the instruction 'don't go hiking alone'. It reminded me of her because it was good advice.....that I did not follow. Just like the messy haired kid popping wheelies on his BMX with no helmet many years ago, I decided to proceed on a solo hike, knowing full well that my mother would kill me, if the trail didn't. We came back to Moorea on the boat so that everyone could have a couple of days off on this beautiful island, before we head to the Tuamotus. The other day that I had off, I went kiteboarding, which was awesome. I ... read more
View of the Ridge from the Reef
Ridge Side Profile
Sailboat Anchorage

Oceania » French Polynesia » Tahiti April 18th 2012

In the morning we rent a car for the day. We set out for a circumnavigation of Tahiiti Nui, the main part of the island, with a detour to Tahiti Iti, the small part of the island connected by an isthmus. Along the way we stop at a beautiful park with grottos, ferns, and lots of tropical plants. There’s another place with a fresh water swimming hole where the spring just bubbles up constantly. The water here is refreshingly cool and just across the road from the beach. On Tahiti Iti, we stop at a waterfront restaurant right on the beach for a hamburger lunch, then go swimming to cool off afterwards. The view is great. Further along, we stop and hike to an area with three tall waterfalls. It is the very picture of paradise, ... read more

Oceania » French Polynesia » Tahiti » Papeete April 17th 2012

Today we all go into Papeete to see what it’s all about. There are lots of shops (expensive ones!) and a great town market with tons of fresh fruits and vegetables (if only this wasn’t the end of the trip) plus good fresh feed. We have lunch here. Papeete has some beautiful parks with streams, fish, and tropical flowers. The waterfront is a nice park, but the view is ruined with a very industrial harbor right in front.... read more

Oceania » French Polynesia » Moorea March 26th 2012

First of all, I'm not really into heights. I used to like jumping off of cliffs, 50'-60' was the highest I'd go, but that all changed after I jumped off the roof of this sketchy house perched on some cliffs on the west side of Maui--I haven't really jumped off of anything since then. I just don't do it anymore. I won't even jump off the sundeck of the boat. So, pretty much needless to say, I didn't really want to go skydiving either. But, I'll tell you what, I'm soooooooo glad I did. It was the most amazing thing I've done in a long time. I wouldn't say I was scared to go, but I definitely dragged my feet in getting to the airport. They didn't think that I was going to show up. The ... read more
Our ride
Cook's Bay

Oceania » French Polynesia » Raiatea March 19th 2012

Raiatea is the second largest of the Society Islands (Tahiti is the largest), but only has about 12,000 residents. It is also thought that Raiatea was where the Polynesians that settled Hawaii and New Zealand originated. The traditional name for the island is Havai'i, which is spelled exactly how Hawaiians say 'Hawaii'. I did not have a lot of time to explore the island, but to make the most of it, I found a guide who takes people on stand-up paddleboard excursions up the Faaroa River, which is the only 'navigable' river in all of French Polynesia. I say 'navigable' because the river is very shallow, for the most part only a couple of feet deep. There is hardly any current, or rather, there was hardly any current--I imagine it could be quite different in a ... read more

Oceania » French Polynesia » Bora Bora March 18th 2012

Bora Bora. It is a place that I had always wanted to go, purely for the fact that it sounds like a faraway remote exotic tropical paradise. I can say that all of those adjectives describe it very accurately, except for 'exotic'. At one point in time, maybe 20-30 years ago it would have been exotic, but not anymore, not in a place that boasts Four Seasons and St. Regis-type high-end resorts, a runway that can land G550's, and an anchorage that welcomes cruise ships........nothing ruins 'exotic' better than a cruise ship. As we were taking the tender into shore one of the nights we were there, we heard the sound of the beating of a drum. As one of the guys put it, 'if you heard that sound in Papua, you wouldn't continue going to ... read more
Hotel 1
Hotel 2
Hotel 3

Oceania » French Polynesia » Bora Bora March 15th 2012

la Orana my friends (Tahitian hello) Summer 2011. I remember I was back home on vacation and that day was drinking coffee with some of my friends out in the town when I got an email on my phone from the corporate office in Miami that I will embark on the ship somewhere middle of October from San Diego, California. Big news! I got assigned to a contract on Celebrity Century and I was damn happy about that. Mostly happy because the ship will cruise all the way to French Polynesia. That means only one thing, my dream destination, Bora Bora. I start sharing the news with some of my friends that I have met on the ship and fortunately everyone of them was slowly assigned to that ship too… Surprise! :) I couldn't wait to ... read more

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 in his shop
Milton Projects

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