Rangiroa Atoll, French Polynesia

May 03, 2018 - National Geographic Orion

Our last day of our expedition found us exploring the largest atoll in the Tuamotus archipelago, Rangiroa. Meaning “vast sky” in the Tuamotuan language, Rangiroa is one of the largest atolls in the World, only surpass in size by the Kwajalein atoll in the Marshall Islands and Huvadhu in the Maldives.

Although remote, Rangiroa has a population of around 2,500 people living on the main town, Avatoru. Most of the population either works in the pearl production or in the ever-growing tourism industry.

As for our guests, today they enjoyed a fascinating tour to get to know all about the pearl production, harvesting, and commercialization in this part of the world. Additionally, being surrounded by pristine and healthy coral reefs, we were able to offer water activities such as glass-bottom Zodiac rides and the always popular snorkeling platform.

The location known as “The Aquarium” was the chosen one to set the snorkeling platform, and from there, we enjoyed the closest encounters guests will ever have with all kinds of wonderful marine life.

With the sunset upon us, we all returned to the ship to enjoy a nice cocktail party hosted by our captain, and to view the compilation of photos of the trip during a special slide show, which revived all the wonderful memories of this dreamy-voyage in the South Pacific Islands!

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About the Author

Lucho Verdesoto

Expedition Leader

Born and raised in the tropical country of Ecuador, Lucho is a passionate naturalist that has been working for Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic since 1998. With a marine biology background, he started as a naturalist in the Galápagos Islands in 1994. Since then, he has filled numerous roles with Lindblad-National Geographic, such as naturalist, undersea specialist and expedition leader in the Galápagos Islands, Costa Rica and Panama, and Baja California.

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