Faaite, Tuamotu Archipelago

Aug 14, 2018 - National Geographic Orion

Today we were welcomed onto the atoll of Faaite of the Tuamotus with a fanfare of melodious music. The pulsating drums and the constant strum of the guitar and ukulele were close by as our guests were treated to the laughter and greetings of the local people. The activities for the day included a drift snorkel in the morning and afternoon through the channel, a guided walk through the village of Hitianau, and a scuba dive session for the divers. In Hitianau channel, snorkelers drifted past the many fish traps.

Faaite has an approximate population of 400 people but as we walked around the village, we saw very few people around. The streets were very quiet and peaceful with next to no traffic except the odd tricycle pedaling by. The homes and gardens of the residents were immaculately tidy with beautiful scented flowers and trees, setting the scene for a nice casual stroll through the village.

After a brilliant day on the Island of Faaite and enjoying the beauty of her lagoon, it was a grand sight to see our ship basking in the glory of the setting Polynesian sun to the west. Ahhhhh, another great day of expedition….Cheers!

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About the Author

Tua Pittman

Cultural Specialist

Internationally acclaimed as a traditional master navigator, Tua has navigated canoes across the great oceans of our planet from the coastlines of Asia through to the shores of the Americas for more than 30 years, without the use of modern instruments. This Cook Islander, also of New Zealand Maori and Tahitian bloodlines, uses an ancient navigational system based upon careful observation of celestial bodies—sun, moon, and stars—as well as using ocean swells, flight patterns of birds, and other natural markers. 

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