Tahiti page 1


Having spent a wonderful three days on Bora Bora our time came to move to our final adventure ... Tahiti!

Before continuing let's put the name "Tahiti" into perspective. Close your eyes for a minute and repeat the word "Tahiti" over a few times. What images appear before your eyes? Images like you've seen on the pages for Rangiroa, Moorea, Huahine and Bora Bora. Those are the images that the name "Tahiti" conjures up in one's mind. Those were the images Anne and I saw before our trip. The name, itself, was everything a beautiful south seas island should be. But, having been there and done that, we've changed our perspective. No, don't misunderstand me. Our trip was wonderful, another of those once in a lifetime trips we have been so fortunate to have taken, but we will no longer think of "Tahiti" in the same way.

Tahiti is the common reference for anyone going to French Polynesia. Tahiti is where all the international flights arrive and depart from. It is but one of hundreds of islands that make up this island nation. The island of Tahiti is the least favored by tourists. When you step off the plane in Tahiti you realize that the magic of your vacation is truly over. Unlike the other islands, Tahiti is the commercial center of French Polynesia and home to most of its residents. What was the magic of being in French Polynesia, the beauty of its beaches and water, the friendliness of its people, the relaxed atmosphere and focus on enjoyment, is, for the most part, lost and forgotten on the island
of Tahiti.
Hillside on Tahiti while landing Tahiti is beautiful from the air. Being one of the larger islands it is easy to spot in the distance. It has majestic mountains covered with lush tropical greens, and the white clouds that shroud them make for a beautiful sight when viewed against the beautiful blues of the ocean. But, as you get closer to touching down at Faaa International Airport, it becomes evident that Tahiti is the island with the population. Houses dot the hillsides and the valleys (right).

Where we were met by friendly representatives of the hotels on the other islands with a flower lei greeting, on Tahiti we were met by a baseball capped van driver holding a sign with our name on it. A reminder of returning from one to many business trips I'm sorry to say. No flower lei greeting. A completely different feeling from when we first landed in Tahiti. Perhaps because we were tired after 20 or so hours of travel and we knew we were heading to Rangiroa immediately. This time we were staying and it was different. Hillside on Tahiti while landing
Arriving at the hotel, the Sofitel Maeva, we found what appeared to be a modern high-rise hotel. Six stories of building aligned so that it faced the water with our room having a balcony and view of Moorea in the distance. The room, however, was small and cramped. There was a bed, dresser and chair, and very little room to maneuver around them. Worse yet, the bathroom was a total disappointment. Where we had spacious bathrooms with open showers in the other hotels, here we had this tiny small bathroom with a narrow, high tub. Definitely not the paradise we had learned to expect on Rangiroa, Moorea, Huahine and Bora Bora. Unfortunately, our vacation to paradise would soon be over and we knew it all to well. The Sofitell Marara Hotel The
Anne standing in the garden at the Sofitel Marara The hotel grounds themselves were the most beautiful part of the hotel. They were immaculately groomed with large flowering plants and a few lily ponds near the restaurants. Speaking of the restaurants, more bad news. We arrived on Friday and were on the meal plan. The restaurant that honored our meal plan was strictly buffet each weekend beginning Friday nights, and, by now, I was buffeted out! There was a large pool and a pool bar. I have to admit I had a mean Virgin Mary, but I had to direct them every step of the way. It was good even if I say so myself.

Perhaps the most wonderful thing about the view from the hotel grounds was Moorea in the distance (below).
A lilly pond at the Sofitel Marara
The island of Moorea in the distance
Moorea across the Sea of the Moon.
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Direct links to other Tahiti album pages
Tahiti pages --The Last Sunset | Touring the Island | Top of this page
Links to Tahiti pages
Polynesia Home Page | Getting To Tahiti | Rangiroa | Huahine | Bora Bora | Tahiti | The Diving
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Anniebees Home Page | Annie's Kites | Drewry Family History | Vacation Paradise | Web Design Service