Day 1: Embark in Papeete, Tahiti
Day 2: Huahine, Society Islands
Day 3: Day at Sea
Day 4: Aitutaki, Cook Islands
Day 5: Roratonga, Cook Islands
Day 6: Day at Sea
Day 7 & 8: Bora Bora, Society Islands
Day 9: Taha’a, Society Islands
Day 10 & 11: Moorea, Society Islands
Day 12: Disembark in Papeete, Tahiti
Day 1 Papeete/Embark the m/s Paul Gauguin
Embark the m/s Paul Gauguin in the afternoon and have time to settle into your cabin before dinner onboard later in the evening. The ship will set sail later that night.
Day 2 Huahine
Huahine is actually two islands, Huahine Iti and Huahine Nui, and the ship anchors between the two in Maroe Bay. This strikingly beautiful pair of islands boasts a crystalline lagoon, colorful villages, and a wealth of Polynesian archaeological sites. Rising 2,200 feet above the sea, Mount Turi is the islands’ high point and provides a dramatic backdrop. While you’re here, you can cruise the lagoon, explore the island’s culture, or picnic on the beach. More vigorous pursuits including a hill trek and SCUBA diving are also available.
Day 3 At Sea
Take a day to enjoy shipboard life: relax poolside, watch the South Pacific pass by, play some table tennis, or read up on our next port at the Reading Gallery.
Day 4 Aitutaki, Cook Islands
Aitutaki’s coral reefs enclose a particularly large and beautiful lagoon. Uninhabited, palm-clad islets (motus) dot the reef, and even the main island is only eight square miles in area. Bask in the sun and enjoy breath-taking views of the shimmering lagoon during a lagoon cruise and beach visit. Or venture to a nearby marine reserve for some snorkeling. Arutanga village is the island’s town, home to the oldest church in the Cooks, which dates from 1829.
Day 5 Rarotonga, Cook Islands
Call today at Rarotonga, capital of the Cook Islands and the most mountainous of the group. Although this is one of the most beautiful places in the world to do nothing, you have a plethora of options for getting as active as you want. Snorkel in the crystalline waters of Muri Lagoon, or encounter the lushness of tropical nature in the Takitumu Conservation Area. Take an easy ride all the way around the island, or make a rugged hike into its lush interior with “Pa,” a local naturalist.
Day 6 At Sea
Spend another day experiencing Paul Gauguin‘s Polynesian ambience: casual, leisurely, and graceful. Take in a lecture on local wildlife or history, and relax this evening over classic French cuisine.
Day 7 Bora Bora, Society Islands
Pulitzer Prize-winning author James Michener described Bora Bora as “The most beautiful island in the world.” You might wish to explore the island with a number of activities, such as a tour of the island paradise that affords breathtaking island views. Or, glide over crystalline waters on a glass bottom boat to see the island’s famous marine life without getting wet, take a thrilling helicopter ride over the ship and island, or simply spend a few hours lolling on the island’s beautiful beach.
Day 8 Bora Bora
Bora Bora’s lagoon is constantly replenished with ocean water from the swells that crash between sandy motus and over the lagoon’s fringing reef. Perhaps today you will discover its charms while swimming, snorkeling, or via an outrigger canoe.
Day 9 Taha’a (Motu Mahana)
Motu Mahana, an islet adjacent to Taha’a, is our very own South Seas paradise featuring white sand beaches with swaying palms, crystal-clear waters and gentle breezes. As an exclusive Paul Gauguinevent, guests will spend a full day exploring this idyllic, isolated island, and relaxing with a delicious barbecue lunch and Polynesian entertainment featuring strolling musicians and singers.
Day 10 Moorea
Covered in an abundance of fresh fruits and flowers, spectacular mountain peaks, peaceful multi-hued lagoons and palm-fringed beaches, Moorea’s awesome beauty is unsurpassed. White-sand beaches lapped by the translucent shimmering lagoon water and shaded by palm, coconut, and ironwood groves stretch for miles. Moorea is another haven for humpback whales at this time of year, and during your visit, you might wish to take an optional whale-watching cruise. Or embark on an optional air-conditioned coach ride around the island to admire the stunning views.
Day 11 Moorea/Papeete, Tahiti
Perhaps today you will try an optional SCUBA diving excursion among the sea turtles and the staggering number of fish species that call Moorea’s waters home. Or simply relax and revel in the island’s natural splendor.
Day 12 Disembark in Papeete
In the morning you’ll have brunch aboard ship, then disembark in the spot where you began your trip of a lifetime.
EXTEND YOUR STAY
Author James Michener referred to Bora Bora as “the most beautiful Island in the world,” and once wrote, “Anyone who has ever been there wants to go back.” It is a playground for the wealthy and the romantic, an icon amid an entire region of islands known for their idyllic beauty.
Velvety mountain peaks… white-sand beaches with swaying palms… sheltered azure bays… gentle breezes… Moorea is the very picture of the ideal island getaway. And you can immerse yourself in its splendor with a hotel stay at a luxury hotel that offers world-class service in a spectacular setting.
Tarry a while in Tahiti, where rugged headlands tumble down to soft sand beaches and tropical gardens scent the air. Here, on Polynesia’s most cosmopolitan island, you’ll experience a welcoming ambiance with a touch of French flair.