Friday, October 11, 2019

Kon-Tiki Explorer - Moorea & Tahiti, French Polynesia

After thirty-two incredible days, the Maasdam shuttled us to our last two stops in French Polynesia, Moorea, and Tahiti. Just like Bora Bora, Moorea and Tahiti are known Worldwide for their immense beauty and picture-perfect beaches.

As we arrived at Moorea the Maasdam pulled into Opunohu Bay and we tendered to shore.

Once ashore we picked up a rental car and did our best to see as much of the island as possible.

Our first stop was a cultural museum that offered insight into the Polynesian history, traditional homes, and dress.

After our history lesson, it was time to find a beach! One of the amazing things about the beaches in French Polynesia is the abundance of marine life within feet of the shoreline. We swam no more than five feet from the sand and encountered a reef with sea anemones, clownfish, and flounder!

It was tempting to spend the entire day here, but we decided to move on. Our next stop was the Belvedere Lookout, a small viewing area opposite Mt. Roto Nui, and the Cook and Opunohu Bays. The views from the lookout are stunning. We could even see the Maasdam tucked away in Opunohu Bay!

On our way down from the lookout we visited the ruins of former Polynesian settlements.

Before heading back to the boat we decided to grab some food and found a roadside shack that sold delicious juice and homemade chutney!

As the Maasdam left Moorea on course for our final destination, the rain moved in, and unbeknownst to us foreshadowed our upcoming day!

Our final day of the cruise began with a last-minute scramble to disembark for a reservation that we had made with a car rental agency. We were in such a hurry we didn't get any pictures of the Maasdam as we left.

After obtaining our car, we grabbed a small bite for breakfast and decided to eat it at one of the Tahitian public beaches... and that is when disaster struck! Amy slipped and fell on an algae-covered boat ramp and hurt her hand so bad that we had to rush to the hospital! The good news is that she only sprained her hand, but the fiasco at the hospital took most of the day, and by the time we were out, there was no time left to explore Papeete.

We were, however, able to eat an excellent Poke meal while taking in views of Tahita and Moorea... so that isn't so bad :)

And just like that, two hemispheres, two oceans, eight countries, and thirty-four days later, our journey was done! The trip was so amazing that it has taken me a year to write about all of the different stops!

Not too bad for only our second cruise!

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