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Old 06-01-2022, 19:08   #1
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Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Hi all!

Happy New Year 2022!!!

I'm doing a bareboat charter next month (end of February 2022) in Tahiti. Chartering a 44-foot monohull from Raiatea for 10 days... looking to visit:

Raiatea (south side)
Huahine (west side)
Taha'a (south and east side)
Bora Bora (all around)
Tupai (just sail by)
Maupiti (south and east side)

I've done some research already, but would love to hear your tips and recommendations. Especially from those of you who have done bareboat charters there in the past. Hopefully others can learn from this, as well!

I've done Thailand (twice), Belize, BVIs (three times), St. Martin (twice), St. Lucia, and Bahamas. Looking forward to add French Polynesia to my list.

Thank you in advance!!
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Old 06-01-2022, 21:00   #2
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

With the caveat that I have no idea what you’ll find in the current climate...

Maupiti is my favorite on that list. Watch the swell forecast, I’ve heard the pass can get a bit nasty with a big swell from the S - never seen it myself. A walk around the island is very nice, and a climb to the top will reward you with great views. Mantas frequently in the lagoon about halfway between the pass and the main island, absolutely worth a snorkel if they are around. If your dinghy is capable, the snorkeling at the NE end of the lagoon is among the best in FP, but it is a trek.

We do enjoy Taha’a a great deal as well. The anchorage off Coral Gardens can get rolly, so usually just a day stop, but the snorkeling can be fun. The coral isn’t in great shape, but better than in many places. We usually see a fair amount of wildlife there. Lots of other pleasant stops, guide books are pretty good. Most of the island is pretty laidback.

Bora-Bora I generally find a mixed bag, but that’s usually because of the hordes of tourists on land and in the water. Maybe a dearth of tourists this year will ameliorate. We like the area behind To’opua and then all the way along the south side. To get to the SE corner can be a long trek, but a good dinghy, again, makes it easier from Matira. The shark feeding in the SE corner is a tourist show, but the giant flocks of eagle rays seem to get a lot less notice.

Been a while since we’ve been to Huahine, and for us Raiatea has been more of a provisioning stop.
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Old 06-01-2022, 21:58   #3
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

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Originally Posted by HeywoodJ View Post
With the caveat that I have no idea what you’ll find in the current climate...
Thank you sooooo much for the awesome post!!!

I'll keep checking the weather, tourist situation, COVID situation, travel restrictions, etc., etc., etc.

Will definitely post pics upon return
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Old 07-01-2022, 03:36   #4
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...-230400-2.html
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:31   #5
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Several charter companies have free on-line cruising guides.

See also:

https://www.tahiticruisersguide.com/

https://www.cruiserswiki.org/wiki/French_Polynesia
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Old 07-01-2022, 04:41   #6
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cool Hand Luke View Post
Hi all!

Happy New Year 2022!!!

I'm doing a bareboat charter next month (end of February 2022) in Tahiti. Chartering a 44-foot monohull from Raiatea for 10 days... looking to visit:

Raiatea (south side)
Huahine (west side)
Taha'a (south and east side)
Bora Bora (all around)
Tupai (just sail by)
Maupiti (south and east side)

I've done some research already, but would love to hear your tips and recommendations. Especially from those of you who have done bareboat charters there in the past.

Thank you in advance!!
Here's a sailor who is in Raiatea right now, and from what she says, was in Maupiti before that.

Trouble at the Top of the Mast and Black Pearl Farms
https://youtu.be/WiZOEjOhAII

Maybe will give you a taste of what's to come. Hope you have a frabulous time!
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Old 07-01-2022, 10:17   #7
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Save myself some typing here are some of my thoughts I posted after Sunsail charter there:

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ml#post3307279

https://www.cruisersforum.com/forums...ml#post2701754

We loved it trying to figure out how to get back.

Caveat: this was 6 years ago so things surely have changed, and there wasn't a pandemic on then...

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Old 07-01-2022, 13:51   #8
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Happy [and healthy] New Year!

Hope you will enjoy your voyaging. So love French Polynesia.

Recommend reviewing Noonsite and the many links regarding French Polynesia & immigration - voyaging Covid regulations.

https://www.noonsite.com/place/french-polynesia/

https://www.noonsite.com/place/french-polynesia/tahiti/

https://tahititourisme.nz/en-nz/covid-19/

Also, keep a watch out for any change in travel restrictions from your country to French Polynesia as with Covid things remain fluid.

By way of example,

Updated to 03/01/2022

IMPORTANT INFORMATION
Inclusion of the United States on the list of countries in the red zone
Considering the significant progression of the OMICRON variant in the United States, this country has been placed in the list of countries classified in the red zone by the National Ministry of Health as of January 2, 2022.

The decree of 1 June 2021 prescribing the general measures necessary to manage the exit from the health crisis subjects travelers who come from "red" zones to special provisions to enter any point of the national territory, and in particular to the presentation of a compelling reason when they are not vaccinated.

With regard to the particular case of French Polynesia, the updating of the texts is under way at the national level and will be completed in the coming days.
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Old 07-01-2022, 15:47   #9
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Tough to do Maupiti and Huahine in ten days and see anything else. Each is a full day over and back from the Raiatea base.

Taha resort (Pearl) previously was welcoming of Yachties. Haven't been there for a while. Raiatea and Taha are beautiful and untouristed and are within a single lagoon system so great for those not conditioned to the open ocean.
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Old 08-01-2022, 07:30   #10
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Spent two weeks there a year ago. I have a complete pdf with charts and itinerary. I researched for one year before going. I'm happy to send it along.

In brief, Raitaia to Utroa and visit the ancient grounds there. Then, huahine. Rent a bike at huahine and explore. Once at huahine, it's a downwind sail to the rest. From huahine to Apu bay, tahaa. Go to champon pearl farm. From there sail to hurepti bay, and go on the vanilla tour with Alaine's son. He was awesome. An astrophysicist turned environmentalist. Best day, ever!! You will also go to the rum distillery, too. (Vanilla tours, Tahas). They have a mooring ball in Hurepti bay if you do the tour at some point .

From hurepti, sail around and drop the hook for a quick snorkel at the coral gardens, then head to Bora Bora. Definitely go to bloody Mary's. Spend two nights in the lagoon. It's magical!

Maupiti is a challenge. You must hit the entrance at slack tide. Too much current goes in there. Also, you'll be sailing upwind on the way back.

I paid extra to have a captain sail the boat back (one way charter) so we could have more time at each place rather than having to make a loop.

I treated my wife and myself to the intercontinental on Bora Bora for two nights and flew home from Bora Bora. The IC has a launch that will take you to Bora Bora airport.

One warning! FP is not the BVI! Very few restaurants, bars, etc. It's an amazing experience! You will be with natural beauty, but not much else. Provision well and have a blast!!

Also, I had all the paper charts, but I found that iSailor on my ipad (my only electronic nav on my own boat) was spot on.

Last thing, FP is IALA A. Be aware of that. Most entrances have range markers. Line them up we outside and you'll have no problem entering and exiting the reefs.

Have fun!!!!

Ben
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Old 08-01-2022, 09:46   #11
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Not a year ago, three years ago. Sorry 'bout that.
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Old 08-01-2022, 11:54   #12
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleWing77 View Post
Here's a sailor who is in Raiatea right now, and from what she says, was in Maupiti before that.

Trouble at the Top of the Mast and Black Pearl Farms
https://youtu.be/WiZOEjOhAII

Maybe will give you a taste of what's to come. Hope you have a frabulous time!
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Old 10-01-2022, 15:21   #13
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

I certainly hope you are not chartering with Dream Yacht. We just got back a few weeks ago from 5 weeks in FP, including a 2 week charter with Tahiti Yacht Charters. They were wonderful, by the way.

We did Maupiti by air. We were in FP for a charter 2 years ago, and wanted to do Maupiti, however the entrance/exit is dicey, and it's not uncommon for sailors go get stuck in there for days or sometimes weeks.

For 10 days, it's my opinion that you can do either Bora Bora, or Huahine. Not both. You can do both, but it would be a busy 10 days, and you will miss a lot. Of the 10 islands we visited on this trip, Huihine is #1 or #2. Bora Bora is down the list. However, it's had to go 1/2 way around the world and NOT go to Bora Bora.

Feel free to contact me via PM, and I'll share my phone number. It's way quicker than trying to type. I've started the writeup, but not finished.

P.S. Bloody Mary's: We now been there twice for dinner. It's tourist trap. There is no priced menu. The owner goes over the selections, looks you over, decides how much you can afford, and charges you. Go, and have a beer or drink for Happy Hour, but avoid the food.
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Old 10-01-2022, 15:53   #14
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

We were there on our boat for 7 weeks between early October and the end of November 2021. The boat has been stuck there (Papeete) since mid-2019 and was not a pretty site. A couple of things.

1. Noonsite published this in December 2021. I would agree with some of the views expressed here and though we encountered sailors who experienced some of the negativity described, we did not.

https://www.noonsite.com/report/fren...adise-no-more/

2. Covid is becoming an increasing problem again. There are credible reports from the WA group that you can join via the link below that visitors are being stranded when they test positive during the critical period prior to boarding a return flight back to the US and other destinations. Note also that hospital space is constrained but medical services are of high quality when they are available. We had to have PCR tests to return to Canada and the Louis Mallarde center in Papeete was very accommodating in helping us to get the timing right. They went out of their way to do this.

This WhatsApp Group is for sailors by sailors in FP. A very useful source of very current information regarding Covid in FP: https://chat.whatsapp.com/HjJGn5j9MW9JArZUWnt3Fp

The following WhatsApp group is for sailors by sailors as a forum for sailing information. The question posted to this Cruiser's Forum thread will provide very current information from people spread throughout FP and in various anchorages spread throughout the archipelago.

https://chat.whatsapp.com/DPDegNr0Phn1SvcPneRK7p

Anchoring is officially very restricted in many of the previously most popular anchorages in Tahiti, Moorea, Bora Bora, Raitea etc. But the degree to which the new rules (PGEM) are being implemented is variable. We were told and it turned out to be true that because we were there during the off season, finding a mooring ball shouldn't be hard. Also, it was clear in Moorea that the PGEM was not being strictly enforced. No doubt the charter company will provide some useful and current advice.

It was quite hot, very humid and the weather (wind) was highly variable between early October and the end of November. We lived for 10 years near the equator in SE Asia so we are familiar with the energy sapping tendencies of this kind of weather.
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Old 11-01-2022, 00:50   #15
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Re: Doing Tahiti bareboat next month (02/2022); any tips?

Wow! You guys are great!! Tons of useful posts! I hope this helps others in the future, as well.

I'll go through all your posts again and will PM the few of you that offered help directly. Thank you, again!!

We were going to go with DYC, but ended up going with Sunsail.
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