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Aranui V

13 Day Cruise in the Tuamotu, Marquesas Islands and Bora Bora (departing Saturday)

The brand new Aranui V launched in November 2015. The combined passenger and cargo vessel will cruise from Tahiti to the Marquesas Islands, the most remote archipelago in the world and to the beautiful island of Bora Bora. ‘Aranui’ means ‘Great Highway’ in Maori and the Aranui V is named after her predecessors, which carried cargo and passengers between the Marquesas and the rest of the world. The Aranui V offers guests more style and comfort with modern and luxurious cabin categories and inviting open spaces perfect for socializing with your fellow guests including the super stylish Sky Bar and Veranda Bar. Other amenities also include a swimming pool, fitness room and massage room.

 

Info

 

Embark

Embark the ship in Papeete, Tahiti from 07:00hrs, departing at 10:00 hrs.

Day 1: Papeete, Tahiti

The friendly Polynesian crew of the Aranui will be waiting to greet you as you embark in Papeete. Dinner will be served on board and will provide a great opportunity to meet your fellow passengers for the first time.

Day 2: Tuamotu Archipelago - Fakarava

Morning arrival in the small oval-shaped atoll of Takapoto located in the Tuamotu Archipelago. A short walk through the village brings you to a white sand beach. On this little paradise, enjoy a delicious barbecue picnic, swim and snorkel in the translucent lagoon among the colorful ballet of tropical fish. Arts & crafts will be available at the beach. Return to vessel by 12pm.

Day 3: At Sea

During the day, relax on one of the ship's sun decks reading a book from the onboard library, take a refreshing swim in the pool or just enjoy the views of the South Pacific waters. Evenings on the Aranui can be spent learning about Marquesan culture or archaeology from a local expert, socialising in one of the ship's bars or listening to the hypnotic Polynesian rhythms played out on the crew's ukuleles.

Day 4: Nuku Hiva (Taiohae - Taipivai) - Marquesas Archipelago

This morning, the Aranui arrives into the bay of Taiohae, a giant volcanic amphiteatre of towering cliffs streaked with waterfalls. Taiohae is the administrative capital of Marquesas and is where Herman Melville jumped on a whaling ship in 1842. Today you will be able to follow his route by jeep along steep, winding dirt mountain roads. You will stop at the village of Hatiheu to visit an archelogical site before taking lunch at Yvonne’s Restaurant where you can enjoy pig baked in an underground oven. You will also be able to see stone tiki gods, sacred ritual sites called me’ae, immense stone platforms or 'paepae', where the Taipi built their houses, and rock engravings called petroglyphs. Your excursion will continue south to Taiohae with its spectacular bay, a giant volcanic amphitheatre dominated by towering cliffs streaked with waterfalls. Back to Taihoae village, you will also find banks, boutiques and an internet café. You may return to the vessel from the village on foot or by car

Day 5: Ua Pou (Hakahau, Hakahetau)

Approaching the Marquesas Archipelago, you will see the mountain spires of Ua Pou. Once you arrive on shore, you can explore the tiny town of Hakahau and take a hike to see some breathtaking views of the mountains or just spend some time browsing the little local shops. Another delicious Marquesan lunch will be served: breadfruit, a Marquesan staple, along with curried goat (one of the Marquesas Islands’ specialties), poisson cru (raw fish marinated in lime juice and coconut milk), taro and sweet red bananas. Enjoy an excellent dance performance including the Bird Dance, traditional to Ua Pou.

Day 6: Hiva Oa (Atuona) - Tahuata (Vaitahu)

The Aranui will arrive in Hiva Oa in the morning, where you will have plenty of time to explore Atuona, the second largest village in Marquesas. This is where Paul Gauguin lived and created some of his best work. You can visit the colonial store where he shopped, as well as a replica of his infamous “House of Pleasure” and the adjoining museum. As you walk up the hill to the cemetery, you’ll have sweeping views of the harbour. Beneath a huge frangipani tree is a tombstone with the simple words: Paul Gauguin 1903. Nearby is the grave of another famous European who also was seduced by Hiva Oa: Belgian singer-composer Jacques Brel, who died in 1978. In the afternoon the ship will moor off the small island of Tahuata. Here you will find a large church built by the Vatican, is decorated with beautiful Marquesan carvings and a stunning stained glass window. Tahuata is also famous for its exquisite bone and helmet shell carvings. There will be many to choose from in the village.

Day 7: Hiva Oa (Puamau) & Tahuata (Vaitahu)

Today you will return to Hiva Oa, calling at Puamau. Here you can travel by 4WD to the most incredible archaeological site for “tikis” (ancient, human-like religious stone sculptures) outside of Easter Island. Your knowledgeable guides will tell you the stories of these haunting statues of ancient times. Surrounded by beautifully lush grounds, the site is overwhelming and has a lot of what Polynesians call “mana” (spiritual power). Return to the ship for lunch as she sets sail back to Tahuata where you can enjoy a lazy afternoon relaxing at the beach or taking a refreshing dip in the Pacific Ocean.

Day 8: Fatu Hiva (Omoa/Hanavave)

This morning visit the lush and remote island of Fatu Hiva. While you are here you will stop at the village of Omoa and take a look at the crafts that make this island famous. Before lunch, the Aranui will sail to the other side of the island, to jaw-dropping Hanavave Bay, also known as the Bay of Virgins. Athletic passengers may choose to make the trip on hike you will take in breathtaking views of towering cliffs and majestic waterfalls. Sunset in Hanavave Bay is a moment of pure bliss.

Day 9: Ua Huka (Vaipaee-Hane-Hokatu)

In the early morning light, the Aranui will arrive in Ua Huka. This is one arrival not-to-be-missed! The manoeuvre entering the small bay and positioning the vessel for departure is truly impressive. On the dry lands of Ua Huka, visit the small museum of Vaiapee located in the island’s city hall gardens. The museum features exquisite replicas of Marquesan art and our guides will immerse you in this ancient civilization.

Day 10: At Sea

Today is spent at sea as the Aranui leaves the Marquesas behind and heads across the water to the Tuamotu Archipelago.

Day 11: Rangiroa Atoll - Tuamotu archipelago

Arrive at the Tuamotu archipelago where you will stop for a picnic at Rangiroa, the largest atoll in the world. Here you can swim and snorkel among coral and tropical fishes. You may even be able to buy a black pearl. This will be your opportunity to visit a working pearl farm and learn how Tahiti’s famed jewel of the sea is produced. And if your dream is to bring one home, the small on-site store features a nice selection of loose and set pearls. If you do not wish to join any tours then simply relax on Rangiroa's white sand beach and translucent lagoon. Later the ship sails to Bora Bora.

Day 12: Bora Bora (Vaitape), Society Archipelago

Arrive at the island of Bora Bora, a truly magical island boasting white sandy beaches, turquoise blue sea juxtaposed against jagged volcanic peaks. Relax and enjoy the spectacular surroundings and picnic provided. You may also choose from a variety of excursions at an additional cost: circle island tour by boat or bus, helicopter flight, 4WD off-road tour and one of the most popular for the bravest: shark and ray feeding!

Day 13: Papeete, Tahiti

The Aranui arrives back in Tahiti in the morning. Bid a fond farewell to your spirited crew and fellow adventurers as you disembark in Papeete.

Disembark

Disembark the ship at Papeete,Tahiti, before at 08:00 hrs.

Includes

  • 12 nights' accommodation on board Aranui V
  • Full board during the cruise (including wine during meals onboard – 1 bottle for 4 passengers)
  • All excursions included in the itinerary
  • Port Taxes and Cruise Development Tax - where applicable, these are shown separately and will be charged at the time of booking

Excludes

  • International transportation
  • Transfers to and from the ship
  • Alcoholic beverages, other than those already mentioned
  • Travel insurance
  • Fuel Surcharges (EUR120 per person)
  • Personal expenses
  • Gratuity
  • Optional excursions including scuba diving, horseback riding, fishing, and helicopter tours
 

Sailing dates