Aug 13, 2018 - National Geographic Orion
Famous for the pristine and diverse reef ecosystem, Fakarava is a snorkeler‘s and diver’s paradise. Due to conservation protections in place here, the marine environment around Fakarava is considered one of the most spectacular, so much so that we found spending another full day in the waters around the south pass of the atoll well worth our time. Fed by daily tidal flushes pouring through the narrow, but deep, break in the atoll, we witnessed a healthy and thriving reef which in most places achieved 100% coral coverage. This provides a habitat for the largest aggregation of grey reef sharks in the world, numbering in the hundreds. With that balance in place, the remainder of the trophic levels are represented as well. The morning was spent exploring our own private motu (a small coralline, and sand island making up part of the atoll) by paddleboard, snorkel, kayak, and on foot. The afternoon was spent drift snorkeling through the pass taking in the reef life as if it were a movie passing us by, as we casually cruised with the current. In the evening cultural specialist Tua Pittman and naturalist Tom Ritchie gathered us on the bow of the ship to learn about the night sky.
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