On the other side of the world, the 118 islands of Polynesia are divided into five magnificent archipelagos: Société, Marquises, Tuamotu, Gambier and Australes. Chartering a boat is the best way to explore this paradise as big as half Europe.
The Society archipelago
This archipelago is composed of the Leewards and Windwards islands. The only international airport is Papeete the administrative capital of Tahiti. Moorea whose volcanik peaks reflect in the turquoise waters of the lagoon is 17 km away from Tahiti. Huahine, a mysterious and wild island is at 175 km in the North West of Tahiti and remains so secrete with its prevailing traditions. Raiatea and Tahaa (vanilla capital) are sacred islands offering particularly pleasant navigation conditions. Bora Bora is the most famous, with waters abounding in rich, its “motu” with coconut groves along the white sandy beaches and coral gardens. From Tahiti, you reach Raiatea, Bora-Bora, Tahaa and Huahine after a wonderful and easy 4 hour-sailing.
The Tuamotu archipelago
The Tuomotu, at 300 miles North West of Tahiti, is the largest concentration of coral reefs in the world. Manihi, Tikehau, Takapoto, Fakarava, Raroia…. With no peaks, no hills, the 76 reefs floats on the surface of the Pacific Ocean. Rangiroa, the main one, has the 2nd largest lagoon in the world. In this fantastic setting, sailors, divers and fishermen are in paradise. A wonderful trekking takes you to the Blue Lagoon, a magnificent place, with desert islets in crystal clear waters where you can observe young sharks, seabirds nesting and blue giant clams on the reefs at low tide.
The Marquise archipelago
The Marquises islands receive very few visitors and are only accessible by the sea. In the island of Hiva Oa, Gauguin and Jacques Brel are buried in the small cemetery of Atuona. The painter house has been reconstituted.
Boat charter in French Polynesia
|French, Polynesian languages|
|French Pacific Franc (XPF)|
|UTC – 10h|
|Low season between February and April
Low season between September and January
Intermediate season between May and August
|Tropical climate with a hot and humid season between November and April and a cooler and dryer season between May and October.
High temperatures all year long, cooled down by sea breeze.
|Easterly trade winds.The mara’amu, Southerly wind between July and September, may reach force 6 to 7 (25 to 30 knots)|
|Sailing resume compulsory|
|Passport compulsory, valid 6 months after return date, visa depending on nationality and length of stay|