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Old 18-01-2007, 15:47   #1
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French Polynesia Crusing Guide

Hey folks, can someone recommend a good cruising guide for the French Polynesia? Primarly insterested in Tahiti and Bora Bora, but perhaps a good guide will point me to other locations near by.

Thanks, :cubalibre
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Old 18-01-2007, 18:26   #2
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Huahine, Raiatea, Tahaa, Moorea, and Maupiti are very nice
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Old 18-01-2007, 18:35   #3
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South Pacific Anchorages by Warwick Clay. Google and you'll find where you can buy in the US. It is also available from Boat Books in both Australia and New Zealand. (Different ownership in each country, both have pretty good web sites.)
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Old 24-01-2007, 05:36   #4
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FRP Cruising Guide

A South Pacific Lonely Planet is all that you'll need. Anchorages are well marked on the charts, bouy sytem is excellent. Travel in the lagoons during daytime only though everything is well marked.

Bora Bora, and Papaette are places you can check in at. Go during the Heiva festival...Bora Bora is best as it's free and the oldest. Raiatea, Huahine and Moorea are my favorites, though Bora Bora is spectacular. Don't moor at the Bora Bora yacht club. It's not a yacht club and expensive. Don't buy food at the Heiva in Bora Bora.

You'll need to post a bond equivalent to airfare home. The banks will soak you on fees for this. Read lonely planet for what to do. Fuel and provisioning is excellent but expensive. Good boat yards in Raiatea, good industrial area in Papaette.

Most people DO NOT speak English. Business places normally do but it's more difficult with the Tahitians. Try to deal with polynesian customs officers rather then the fr*gs. If you do get a rude fr*g ask for his name and tell him your father is a senator and will complain directly to the fr*g ambassador. This will quiet them down. Some can be extremely bad tempered though most are pleasant and professional.

It's best to start in Tahiti then sail north due to prevailing winds.

ATM's are readily available and currency exchange. Many places will accept US dollars. When you leave convert all FRP Francs back into US dollars as FRP money is useless anywhere else in the world.

What else you want to know?
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Old 24-01-2007, 05:46   #5
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It sounds as though Kapena knows whereof he speaks, but as a pragmatic matter of expressive style, I’d suggest visitors not refer to the French as “Frogs”.
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Old 24-01-2007, 06:46   #6
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Charlie's Charts




TITLE: CHARLIE'S CHARTS of Polynesia (5th Ed.)
AUTHOR: Charles and Margo Wood
ISBN: 0-96863706-X
LANGUAGE: English and French
RETAIL PRICE: $33.50 (U.S.) $38.50 (Can.)
PURCHASE: Buy this product
OVERVIEW: Cruisers in Polynesia have provided many significant updating details for anchorages and marina facilities in the following areas:
  • Iles Marquises
  • Archipel des Tuamotu (the Tuamotu)
  • Pitcairn Island
  • Isla de Pascua (Easter lsland)
  • Iles de la Societe (Society Islands--Windward Islands of Tahiti, Moorea, Huahine, Raiatea and Bora-Bora)
  • Cook Islands
  • Niue
In addition to color photographs by Charles and Margo Wood there are many taken by Karin Steinkamp who has cruised Polynesian waters extensively. Her contribution has added beauty and remarkable photographs to the guide.
The introduction covers topics such as routes and passage times, weather, cyclones, currents, entry procedures and regulations for the different areas.
"After cruising the Tuamotu and Society Islands for two seasons we are convinced that there is no better and up-to-date guide and the authors have gone far to revise the charts and add new information as often as practicable."
K. Michael Marquardt, Master Mariner
We're going with this one.

See you out there!

Kirk ~~~ s/v Gallivanter ~~~ St Thomas
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Old 24-01-2007, 08:57   #7
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Kapena, Excellent post with tons of information.

There must be a big difference between the French officials in Polynesia and those in the Caribbean. I remember my girlfriend and I checking into St Barts and the immigration officer, dressed in an immaculate uniform actually got up from his desk and pulled up a chair for my girlfriend. It was such a change to have a gentleman to deal with rather than the lazy ignorant people who now populate the offices of the former British islands.

Charlies Charts looks excellent and for us Brits its very cheap too, even with very high postage charges having a great exchange rate at the moment.
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Old 24-01-2007, 13:42   #8
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Sorry about the "frog" reference. The only problem I had was Bora Bora when checking in. An extremely angry French gendarme met me at the door and berated me for 10 minutes, in French, which I only understand a few words. Red faced with anger, yelling at the top of his voice, standing inches away from my face. I hadn't said a word to him, and still don't know what it was about. I had just walked in, directly from the boat. Later, two embarassed Tahitian gendarme's gave an apology...for their boss....still have no clue as to the outburst.
I had no other problem, including in Tahiti where some of the officials were also French. Still the Tahitian officials will make a better effort in answering questions. Just this one incident, but quite a shock when you have just landed in a country and the first person you meet is going off on you and there is no clue as to what the reason is.

More cruising notes:
You have to check in and out at each island.

You med-moor at the quay in Papaette (check in). The harbor has a chain running the entire length which used to be used to moor tugboats...many people snag their anchors on this chain, some require divers to free it though a lot of times the Harbor master will provide the divers free. It's best when you are leaving to leave the anchor down, power forward a few hundred yards and pull the anchor around to the opposite direction. I had no trouble doing this.

The quay has water and 220 electric available but it's very noisy. I recommend the marina.

When passing the airport you must call for clearance. It's well posted with signs.

You can easily get around Tahiti on the bus...just flag them down and they'll pick you up. Take a map and mark where you want to go. Remember the people on board will not speak English but pointing to the marked spot will be sufficient to get directions or help as to where to get off.
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Old 25-01-2007, 17:20   #9
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Aloha!

I just ordered Charlie's Charts French Polynesia from West Marine - On Sale! $27.88 + shipping.

I LOVE it when things turn out to be cheaper than expected.

See yawl in the Marquesas next year!

To Life!

Kirk
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Old 26-01-2007, 01:39   #10
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Gallivanters, I've tried the West Marine site but can't find these charts. I've input Charlies Charts but just get the Alaska option. I've tried other ways of searching too but no luck. Can you please give me a pointer to help me get to the right product.

Thanks
David
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Old 26-01-2007, 02:07   #11
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When searching the web, exact spelling is paramount.

Charlie's Charts of Polynesia
by Charles E. Woods, updated by Margo Wood
available ($33.50) at: Charlie's Charts Cruising Guides

and

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* NYN Home Page
* Imray Nautical Books and nautical Charts from Imray, Admiralty Charts and pilots for sailing navigation from Imray, Laurie, Norie&Wilson Ltd www.imray.com
* Kelvin Hughes - Marine Radar, ECDIS, VDR, Integrated Bridge systems, Charts and Navigation Products, SOLID STATE RADAR
* www.safenav.com
* Maryland Nautical Sales sells nautical charts - nautical books - navigation instruments etc 10 percent discount on all on-line orders. 800-596-7245
* Hjem - Nautisk Forlag
* Nautical Mind- Home
* West Marine - Make Boating Better with New Boating Gear from West Marine
* NYN Home Page
* Test Page for the Apache HTTP Server on Red Hat Enterprise Linux
* nautical charts deliveries Islamorada Internacional admiralty charts
* Basically Books
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Old 26-01-2007, 19:54   #12
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Sail Whisper

These folks have a very nice web log portraying their travels across the pacific.

Sail Whisper
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Old 04-06-2008, 23:24   #13
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Please see my latest post:
http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...ons-15934.html
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Old 05-06-2008, 04:26   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
It sounds as though Kapena knows whereof he speaks, but as a pragmatic matter of expressive style, I’d suggest visitors not refer to the French as “Frogs”.
Sounds like Kapena met a few toads...
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Old 05-06-2008, 06:19   #15
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Marsha Davock's guide is dated, but good. I also see a newer Guide to Navigation and Tourism in French Polynesia by
Patrick Bonnette, Emmanual Deschamps , but have not used it
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