NEW! A journey on the Aranui 5 – November 2017
The Aranui 3 was fantastic – the Aranui 5 is even better.
The cargo/passenger ship travels from Tahiti in French Polynesia, to the Tuamotu group of coral atolls and then to the Marquesas where it delivers cargo to the six inhabited islands.
Passengers get the chance to explore these remote and mysterious islands.
The return journey revisits the Tuamotus and calls at Bora Bora.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Fakarava
Fakarava is the second largest atoll in French Polynesia.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Nuku Hiva, Hatiheu
Rugged Nuku Hiva was our first glimpse of the Marquesas Islands.
We took barges to the harbour in Taiohae village and then SUVs to Hatiheu where we had an umu lunch and then visited the archaeological site of Meae Paeke at Taipivai.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Hiva Oa, Puamau
At Puamau on the north coast of Hiva Oa we walked to the archaeological site Meae Iipona, peaceful and a little overgrown.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Hiva Oa, Hanamenu
One of the Aranui crew members had relatives in the small village of Hanamenu and organised a picnic for everyone.
We had a wet landing ie the barge pulled up to the beach and let down the front ramp.
The local boys performed a vigorous haka and after lunch there was time for a swim before heading back to the ship.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Tahuata
Tahuata is a small island south of Hiva Oa.
Watching cargo being loaded and unloaded onto barges was interesting as was the short walk to the village of Vaitahu. A local pig proved to be very photogenic!
The craftspeople here are famous for their bone carving.
We also visited the Catholic church with its beautiful stained glass windows.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Ua Po
As the Aranui sails into the harbour at Hakahau the hilltop white cross stands out.
The view from there is spectacular.
We were entertained in the community centre by young dancers and drummers and had the chance to buy the wood carvings that Ua Pou is famous for.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Fatu Hiva
The weather on Fatu Hiva was wet, very wet.
We walked to the village of Omoa and tried not to drip onto the tapa bark paintings that the island is known for.
A demonstration showed how labour intensive it is to make tapa.
We later made a wet landing on the beach at Hanavave village for a performance of the Marquesan Bird Dance by local girls.
Aranui 3 in 2010 – Solar Eclipse
This voyage of the Aranui 3 was booked by a large number of amateur astronomers and eclipse chasers.
We had been due to land on the atoll of Hikuera in the Tuamotus to watch it but the weather was cloudy there so the Aranui captain sailed along the eclipse line until he found a clear spot for us.
Much appreciated by all and great fun.