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Tahiti & the Society Islands Aboard The Gauguin. 8 Days.

Tahiti, in the South Pacific, is part of the Society Islands archipelago. Taken as a group, these islands define a waking dream: crystalline lagoons, chalk-white atolls, pristine isles, mountains that wear a halo of tropical mist. Life—both below the ocean and above it—is good here in French Polynesia. Come poke around aboard The Gauguin, a small ship whose size allows us explore just as we wish. Our cruise begins and ends in Papeete, Tahiti, with time on Huahine, Taha'a and Motu Mahana, Bora Bora, and Moorea.

     Isn’t it time you checked into Utopia?

8 Days

French Polynesia

Type:Ocean Cruising



On this journey, R. Crusoe partners with Paul Gauguin Cruises, and Crusoe travelers share the Paul Gauguin with other, non-Crusoe travelers.

This journey departs January through July, October, and December 2019.

Day 1: Papeete, Tahiti
• Embark the ship.
Overnight aboard The Gauguin
Day 2: Huahine Island
• Cruise to Huahine.
• Beach time at a lagoon.
• Shore excursion options
• Cruise toward Taha'a Mahana.
Overnight aboard The Gauguin

Day 3: Taha'a Mahana, Motu
Taha'a Island, aka Vanilla Island, with options including a visit to a vanilla plantation.
Cruise to Motu Mahana Island, owned privately by Paul Gauguin Cruises. Time at leisure, or join a shore excursion.
Overnight aboard The Gauguin
Day 4-5: Bora Bora Island
• Cruise to Bora Bora.
• Full range of options including Coral Gardens exploration, swim with rays, glass-bottom boat ride, wave-running, Blue Lagoon exploration, and overland tours.
Overnights aboard The Gauguin
Day 6: Moorea Island
• Cruise to Moorea.
• Shore excursions including dolphin research station visit, mountain exploration, rain forest hike, Circle Island tour.
• Optional sunset catamaran cruise.

Overnight aboard The Gauguin

Day 7: Moorea, Papeete
• Leisure time in Moorea.
• Cruise to Papeete, where we dock overnight.
Overnight aboard The Gauguin

Day 8: Papeete
• Disembark in Papeete.
• Optional shore excursions for those with flight departures late in the day.

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Pricing changes based on stateroom availability. Speak to your R. Crusoe travel specilalst for up-to-the-minute fares.

For more information, to book, or to speak to an R. Crusoe & Son tour specialist, please call us at 800-585-8555.

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About Our Ship.

The Paul Gauguin, a luxury ship, is small enough to sail gracefully through the French Polynesian lagoons and large enough to meet all your needs while you’re onboard. Custom designed to navigate narrow passages and shallow waters of the South Pacific, she is at once beautifully versatile and sturdy.

     All of the staterooms have ocean views, and nearly two-thirds have private balconies. Cabin categories B and above offer en-suite bar set-ups and butler service.

     The crew-to-passenger ratio is quite remarkable; 217 crewmembers attend to just 332 passengers, max. Do the math, and you discover that this is among the highest ratio available today among ships on the high seas.

    The Gauguin’s fare takes full advantage of the local larder. Meals include the culinary creations of Jean-Pierre Vigato, chef propriétaire of the world-renowned, two-Michelin starred Restaurant Apicus in Paris. Meals are served in the open-seating main dining room as well as in two other dining rooms that offer both indoor and al fresco tables. The latter two take reservations for dinner.

     Other amenities aboard ship: a fitness center, spa and beauty salon, casino, performance venue, three bar-lounges, outdoor pool with bar, retractable water sports marina, boutique, Internet café, and photography shop.

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French Polynesia: Captain Cook & Mutiny on the Bounty.

In the second half of the 1700s, an intrigued King George III of England was interested in finding an unknown southern continent, Terra australis incognita. To that end, he sent several seafarers to find the elusive land, but all (including the grandfather of Lord Byron) came back empty-handed. One of them, however, Captain Samuel Wallis, did stumble upon the South Pacific island of Tahiti in 1767

     King George then dispatched a young lieutenant, James Cook, to Tahiti. A product of the Age of Enlightenment, Cook was a master navigator, mathematician, astronomer, and physician. His primary mission was to observe the transit of Venus across the sun, an astronomical event that when measured from separate points on Earth, would enable scientists for the first time to draw our planet’s longitude. Cook’s secondary mission? Find the elusive southern continent.

     Though Cook’s measurements proved of little scientific value, he did make a careful study of the island and its inhabitants during his six-month visit. Using Tahiti as a base, he also discovered the Society Islands to the northwest and the Australs to the south, and he explored the coasts of New Zealand and Australia.

     On two subsequent voyages, Cook discovered Fiji, the Cook Islands, Tonga, Niue, New Caledonia, Norfolk Island, and Hawaii. His ships were the first to sail below the Antarctic Circle.

     Cook returned to London in 1771 and shared his firsthand observations about Tahiti, including the abundance of starchy breadfruit that grew there and on other South Pacific islands.

     A group of plantation owners in the Caribbean heard about the breadfruit and petitioned King George to transport breadfruit trees to Jamaica as a cheap source of food for their slaves. In 1787, the king dispatched William Bligh, one of Cook’s former navigators, to captain the HMS Bounty. One of Bligh’s officers was Fletcher Christian.

     The Bounty was late arriving in Tahiti, missing the current breadfruit season entirely. Christian and the crew frolicked on Tahiti for six months as they waited for the next season, enjoying the easygoing lifestyle and the company of island women. In 1789, Christian and a group of crewmen staged a mutiny off the Tonga archipelago. He set Captain Bligh and 18 of his loyal crewmembers adrift in a longboat with a compass, a cask of water, and a few provisions. Meanwhile, Christian sailed the Bounty back to Tahiti, where he put ashore other crew members loyal to Bligh. Then Christian, eight mutineers, their Tahitian wives, and six Tahitian men disappeared into history.

     Bligh and his men managed to row their longboat some 3,000 miles to the Dutch East Indies, where they hitched a ride back to England. Bligh, incidentally, later returned to Tahiti to collect breadfruit, but the venture was a bust: Turned out the slaves on Jamaica insisted on rice instead.


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