French Polynesia – Friendly and Remote Islands

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Cathy and I have talked about Bora Bora  and our ship experience on the Aranui 5, so lets talk about our land experience.

French Polynesia is made up of about 200 islands spread across an ocean area equivalent to Europe, however with a combined land mass that is the size of Corsica.  The indigenous inhabitants traveled from South East Asia, and maintained trade routes that reached as far as Easter Island,  South America, and New Zealand.  After a long period of stomping on indigenous culture by church and state, what we see now is a resurgence.  The title picture is in front of a giant banyan tree at an archeological site.

Other pictures are:

  • a Pearl Master seeding oysters for black pearls
  • Cathy getting ready to snorkle off the beach
  • tikis – the tikis in the Marquesas influenced the maoi statues on Easter Island
  • crafts person making tapa cloth from beaten bark, later painted with symbols and worn
  • Jacques Brel and Paul Gaugin graveyard and museum visits –  both lived and died in the Marquesas
  • excited canoe club members unwrapping the Ferrari red 6 person racing canoe that was delivered on the Aranui 5
  • Catholic village churchs
  • community welcomes – the bi weekly visits by the Aranui 5 are a lifeblood for these remote island villages

Enjoy.  And please subscribe at the end of this blog if you would like notification of future trips and blogs.


Trip Logistics

Cathy and I fly into Papeete from Toronto via San Francisco on United.  After overnighting in Papeete, we take a 1 hour flight on Air Tahiti to Bora Bora for a 5 day stay.  Returning to Papeete, we board the Aranui 5, a hybrid freighter passenger ship for a 12 day, 3000+ kilometer round trip through the Tuamotu and Marquesas Archipelagos (map below).  We spend our last night in French Polynesia on the island of Moorea, a short ferry ride from Papeete.

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