Finding Paradise in the Marquesas Islands with Aranui 5 Cruises.

French Polynesia is by far one of the most beautiful places in the world I’ve been, and the Aranui 5 cruise is a fantastic way to see some of the more remote islands of French Polynesia (Marquesas Islands) like Fakarava, Nuku Hiva, Ua Pou, Marama, Bora bora, Fatu hiva, Hiva Oa, and Ua Huka.

Part cargo ship, part luxury liner, the Aranui 5 cruise is unlike any other I’ve experienced. It’s utilitarian function to bring much needed supplies to these remote outposts afords intrepid travellers to opportunity to see places not normally tread by the average instagrammer. These are wild islands, with locals who keep traditions alive not for the tourists, but for their own pride of culture. It’s full of beautiful lore, legend and history, and to be able to step back in time to these pristine island paradises is a rare experience indeed.

This is just a little teaser film of some of the experiences I’m going to be sharing in this upcoming 10 part series to hopefully give you a glimpse into this wonderfully rare corner of the world. If you would like to read the article I published for Get Lost Magazine, hop over to my website where you can download it, and enjoy. https://www.robertoserrini.com/stw
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ARANUI FAREWELL PARTY! Goodbye Tahiti, Marquesas and beautiful Polynesia!

You want to talk about epic trips? This was one of them … cruising around for 10 days aboard the crazy Aranui 5 through some of the most remote, beautiful, idyllic islands of French Polynesia was an adventure and a treat. And this party the last night aboard was the bomb. A feast unlike any I’ve seen before, with dancing, partying and just all around good times with some of the nicest people I’ve ever met. So glad I got to have this one of a kind experience with such special, lovely people. Thank you Aranui and of course, thank you Get Lost Magazine for giving me experiences that I could never have wished for in my wildest dreams. So grateful.

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The Aranui 5: Life aboard a cargo/luxury cruiseliner in Tahiti.

The Aranui is a very special cruise ship, part cargo, part luxury liner, and all love. The dual nature of the vessel allows it to travel to some very unique destinations that most cruises do not service, mainly, the remote Marquesas Islands. The fact that you can visit this lost paradise island chain, free of commercialism and tourists, is a dream to the seasoned traveler looking for something a bit more unique.

Onboard the Aranui you are part of a family. The rooms are finely appointed, the lounges swank, and the parties lively. There’s all sorts of activities, from hulu dancing, traditional weaving, cooking, and even fashion shows. What’s more, there is music all around, either in big dance parties, or impromptu jam sessions from the crew at the bar. It’s never a boring moment and always a lovely break from the intense relaxation the cruise provides.

This was a trip for the ages, and definitely worth checking out if you are looking for a novel way to see a slice of paradise. You can read about my entire experience at Get Lost Magazine, or, check out one of the other videos I’ve done highlighting the individual islands. Paradise awaits.

 

 

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Fatu Hiva: The best of the Marquesas.

Today aboard the Aranui we visit perhaps my favorite of the Marquesas Island chain, Fatu Hiva, which has some of the most amazing culture, local arts, beautiful bays, and amazing hiking that Polynesia has to offer.

From Tahiti Island Travel: At about 75 kilometers from Hiva Oa, Fatu Hiva is the southernmost island in the Marquesas and has a striking outline, particularly when approaching the famous bay known as the Bay of Virgins. The island offers a number of interesting excursions, the cross-island road that joins the two villages of Hanavavae and Omoa, a 4-hour long hike, is unmissable. The route has spectacular views and passes through luxuriant tropical vegetation, with its heady mixture of exotic fragrances.

The 650 inhabitants live mainly from fishing, coprah production, growing nono – a fruit with astonishing medicinal virtues.
The talented Local sculptors have a vast array of materials to choose from, including sandalwood, rose wood and coconut wood. There are also a variety of vegetable fibers, at hand, the island continues to produce tapa or bark-cloth, decorated with traditional designs – it is a forgotten art on many other islands.
Fatu Hiva is a world lost in time, even within the Marquesas!

Fatu Hiva is the island of tapa, a magnificent cloth which is made using the bark of the Banyan, Breadfruit and Paper Mulberry trees. These large sheets of fabric, laboriously made by beating the layer of bark, were traditionally used to protect ones’ privacy, making curtains, coverings or clothing. Large lengths of cloth were worn during important ceremonies and tribal war, the length and quality of the cloth being a sign of wealth and status. Today the smaller pieces are more commonly decorated with geometric or natural designs.

There is also a unique opportunity to visit the turn of the century home of M. William Grelet, a Legion of Honor general who’s amazing island home has been perfectly preserved, right down to the bed linens. Very cool to be able to walk through history.

The highlight of the trip for me at least was the hike up the center of the island which is a plateau covered largely by tall grasses and pandanus trees. To the south of the plateau, running to the south, is a mountain ridge, called Tauauoho, its highest peak, at 1,125 m (3,691 ft.) is the highest point on Fatu-Hiva. From there you can almost touch heaven.

Stay tuned as we explore these amazing Marquesas Islands aboard the dope Aranui 5 for Get Lost Magazine!
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