A Yachties Day Out in Tahiti
You have struck lucky and landed yourself on a yacht that not only has a South Pacific itinerary but is berthed in Tahiti for a few weeks in between charters. With time to spare, you can have some well earned days off. This small island in the middle of the worlds largest ocean has plenty on offer, with things to suit everyone, Tahiti is a yachties haven.
Hit the beach
If time off to you means going to the beach to relax after a charter whilst balancing a pina colada in one hand and your kindle in the other, then head to the southeastern edge of Tahiti Nui to La Plage de Maui. This white sandy beach, with a lagoon perfect for swimming and beach bars to soak up Polynesian hospitality, is the perfect relaxation spot. If this seems too tame, and your inner surfer is itching to play then further down the coast is Teahupo’o, the location of the annual Billabong Pro Tahiti surf competition. One of the most dangerous surf breaks in the world, if you aren’t quite there in surf skill yet, then its still a great place to hang and watch the pros.
Get the adrenaline flowing
Time off on a Pacific island doesn’t mean you have to just be confined to the beaches, for those with more of an adventurous appetite for a day off there is loads on offer. To discover Tahiti’s wild interior head into the Fautaua Valley, trek through the rainforest to the Les Trois Cascades (or 3 waterfalls, for those that didn’t listen in French class…) For the views, hike up to the summit of Mount Aorai. If you aren’t up for hiking, take a 4WD tour with Ciao Tahiti Excursions to Lake Vaihiria, visiting archaeological sites and the Papeeno Valley. Get deep inside the islands volcanic history and hire a guide to take you through the Hitiia lava tubes, feel tiny and insignificant whilst you trek deep within the huge caves. Under the water, get your dive gear on and head to ‘The Spring’, one of Tahitis best scuba sites, home to turtles and sharks.
Shopping, is always a good idea
Local markets in the Pacific are perfect to soak up the Polynesian culture and to enjoy a spot of shopping from local arts and crafts to food goodies. The heart of the capital, Papeete is home to one of Tahiti’s largest markets. As well as colourful island fashion, wood carvings and oils you will also find the ultimate French Polynesian black pearl. Just a stones throw from the waterfront is the Black Pearl museum, established by Robert Wan, to check out the history of these pearls.
Happy hours are the best hours
A day off isn’t complete without treating yourself to some well deserved food…and drinks. The Intercontinental Resort is perfect for those sundowners, especially at their happy hour. If there is a group of you who can’t decide on where to go then head down to the local food trucks in Papeete on a Friday, where you can enjoy local Polynesian food and Asian fusion, a great stop before heading into town for a few drinks. For more of a dining experience check out the Blue Banana, this lagoonside restaurant has a particularly good poisson cru. Another top spot in Tahiti is the Belvedere Restaurant, another prime sundowner hangout as it has a great position up in the mountains looking down over the island.
A Pacific getaway
If you have more than one day off then what better way to celebrate than getting off the boat. Check out those famous South Pacific overwater bungalows over at Moorea, just a quick ferry ride from Tahiti and a true Pacific island getaway. Stay at the Sofitel Moorea la Ora Beach resort for a taste of true luxury. If you can’t stay then Moorea can also be explored in a day, take an early ferry, hire a scooter and soak up this slice of paradise, a must do is the swimming with stingrays.