Tuamotu & the Marquesas Islands« All Aranui cruise options
- Day 1 Depart Papeete, Tahiti
- Day 2 Tuamotu Archipelago / Fakarava
- Day 3 At Sea on the Aranui
- Day 4 The Marquesas Archipelago / Ua Pou
- Day 5 Nuku Hiva
- Day 6 Hiva Oa (Atuona)
- Day 7 Fatu Hiva
- Day 8 Hiva Oa (Puamau)
- Day 9 Tahuatu (Vaitahu)
- Day 10 Ua Huka
- Day 11 Nuku Hiva
- Day 12 At Sea
- Day 13 Tuamotu Archipelago / Rangiroa
- Day 14 Papeete, Tahiti / Disembark
|Dates||Deck + Cabin Type|
|Standard||Deluxe||Suites J-H||Suites A-D, 1-4||Suites E-G|
Jun 8 '13
Jun 29 '13
Jul 20 '13
Aug 10 '13
Aug 31 '13
Sep 21 '13
Oct 12 '13
Nov 2 '13
Nov 23 '13
Dec 14 '13
|Rates do not include cruise and port taxes ranging from $291 to $355. Contact us for details.|
Jan 11 '14
Feb 1 '14
Feb 22 '14
Mar 15 '14
Apr 5 '14
Apr 26 '14
May 17 '14
Jun 7 '14
Jun 28 '14
Jul 19 '14
Aug 9 '14
Aug 30 '14
Sep 20 '14
Oct 11 '14
Nov 1 '14
Nov 22 '14
Dec 13 '14
|Rates do not include cruise and port taxes ranging from $291 to $355. Contact us for details.|
|Deals, Discounts... Savings!|
|10%||Jun 9, 12
Feb 23, 13
Apr 6, 13
Jun 8, 13
Aug 31, 13
|These special offers are applicable only to new bookings. Discounts are subject to availability, so contact us for more details.|
- Single Supplement: please add 50% to cruise fare.
- Adults sharing cabin with Pullman (three beds), third person saves 25% off cruise fare.
- Cruise fare does not include port and cruise taxes, which will vary by departure and cabin type.
Day 1 Depart Papeete, Tahiti
Day 2 Tuamotu Archipelago / Fakarava
Fakarava is the largest atoll in the Tuamotu. There is snorkeling and scuba diving for people of all levels. You can swim and snorkel in the translucent lagoon to watch the colorful ballet of tropical lagoon fish. The entire morning will be spent on shore. Lunch will be served on board while you set sail for the Marquesas.
Day 3 At Sea on the Aranui
You can relax with a book on one of the sun decks, swim in the small pool or enjoy the immense South Pacific. Balmy evenings mean reading in lounge/library or chatting with an authority on Marquesan culture or archaeology. You’ll probably spend many evenings socializing on the upstairs deck/bar with your fellow adventurers from around the world. The spirited Polynesian crew treat you like welcomed guests and proudly introduce you to their rich culture. Almost every night, they sing and strum hypnotic Polynesian rhythms on their ukuleles and will teach you to move your hips to hypnotic beat of the tamure.
Day 4 The Marquesas Archipelago / Ua Pou
From the deck, you’ll see the soaring mountain spires of Ua Pou. Whenever the Aranui stops, villages greet it. As the muscular crew unloads supplies - from cements to sugar - and loads sacks of copra ( dried coconut meat ), you’ll explore the tiny town of Hakahau with its church with a hand-carved wooden dais. You can meet some talented woodcarvers and hike up a hill for a breathtaking view of the distant cloud-covered mountains. At Rosalie’s Restaurant, you’ll taste your first Marquesan lunch: breadfruit, a marquesan staple, along with curried goat, barbecued rock lobster, poisson cru (raw fish marinated in lime juice and soaked in coconut milk ), taro and sweet red bananas.
Day 5 Nuku Hiva
Sail into Taiohae’s spectacular bay, a giant volcanic amphitheater dominated by towering cliffs streaked with waterfalls. As the Aranui unloads, you can explore Taiohae, the tiny Administrative capital of the Marquesas. Taiohae Bay is where a 23-year-old sailor, Herman Melville and a buddy jumped a whaling ship in 1842. Follow their escape route by jeep along steep, winding dirt mountain roads to the village of Hatiheu to visit an archeological site. Have lunch at Yvonne’s Restaurant, one of the best restaurants in the Marquesas, where the specialty is pig baked in an underground oven. You’ll meet the owner-chef, Yvonne, who also happens to be the town’s energetic mayor. After lunch, travel to the valley of Taipivai. The area is dotted with stone tiki gods and sacred ritual sites (me’ae) and immense stone platforms (paepae) where the Taipi built their houses. Enigmatic petroglyphs of birds, sacred turtles and fish are carved on huge boulders. The Aranui’s whaleboats will sail down the river to return you to the Aranui, which is anchored in the bay.
Day 6 Hiva Oa (Atuona)
You will have plenty of time to explore Atuona, the second largest village in Marquesas. This is where Paul Gauguin lived and did some of his best work. You can visit the colonial store where Gauguin shopped and go into a replica of the Impressionist’s infamous “House of Pleasure.” As you walk up the hill to the cemetery, you’ll have sweeping views of the harbor. Beneath a huge frangipani tree is a tombstone with the simple words: Paul Gauguin 1903. Nearby is the grave of another famous European who also was seduced by Hiva Oa: Belgian singer-composer Jacques Brel, who died in 1978. You’ll also enjoy another lavish Marquesan lunch at Hoa Nui Restaurant.
Day 7 Fatu Hiva
This is the most lush and remote island of the Marquesan. It’s also a center of Marquesan crafts. As our guides lead you through the village of Omoa, you’ll see women hammering mulberry, banyan or breadfruit bark on logs. They dry it and then paint ancient Marquesan designs on their famous tapa cloth. Fatu Hiva is also well-known for its hand-painted pareus (sarongs) and monoi, a perfumed coconut oil scented with tiare blossoms and sandalwood. Skilled woodcarvers will invite you into their home/studios.
The Aranui sails to the other inhabited village. Hanavave is on the Bay of the Virgins, which is one of the world’s most beautiful bays. Some athletic passengers may choose to make the trip by foot. On this unforgettable ten mile hike you’ll have unforgettable views of towering cliffs and majestic waterfalls.
Day 8 Hiva Oa (Puamau)
Travel by foot or by jeep to the most important archeological sites for tikis (ancient, human-like religious sculptures) other than Easter Island. Trained guides will show you these mysterious jungle ruins of Puamau and tell the stories of these haunting statues of an ancient civilization. Bring plenty of film.
Day 9 Tahuatu (Vaitahu)
On this leaf-shaped island, the air is thick with fragrant scent of tiare, frangipani and history. In the tiny village of Vaitahu, Spanish explorers landed in 1595 and opened fire on a crowd of the curious islanders, killing about 200. Tahuata also is the site of the first French settlement in the Marquesas in 1842. The huge church built by the Vatican, is decorated with beautiful Marquesan carvings. Picnic in the Valley of Hapatoni and swim and snorkel at a nearby beach.
Day 10 Ua Huka
Visit a museum with exquisite replicas of Marquesan art. Some Aranui passengers will explore the island by four-wheel drive; others will ride the Marquesan horses. For three hours, explore the mountain landscape with heart-stopping views of the Pacific. The wild horses (brought from Chile in 1856) thrive here, outnumbering the islands 476 residents. Have a Marquesan lunch at local restaurant and have plenty of time to visit studios of woodcarvers. Visit the arboretum and the garden of fruits and flower. Back on the Aranui, it’s Polynesian night with dancing and buffet dinner on the deck.
Day 11 Nuku Hiva
The Aranui will dock in Nuku Hiva at Taiohae in the morning. You may take the Le Truck back to the town center and spend free time there. At noon, the ship will sail to Ua Pou, returning to your first stop in the Marquesas, Hakahau. This is your last chance to buy Marquesan crafts.
Day 12 At Sea
Enjoy sun bathing on the deck, sipping exotic drinks while watching the crystal blue waters en route to Rangiroa.
Day 13 Tuamotu Archipelago / Rangiroa
On lovely Rangiroa, the largest atoll in the world, picnic on coral beach. Aranui passengers can swim and snorkel in a translucent lagoon. Excellent snorkeling and scuba diving are available for people of all levels. “Rangi” is an underwater jewel box with stunning colors of corals and clouds of tropical fishes. You’ll have the opportunity to purchase black pearls from local black pearl farmers. These rare black pearls are French Polynesia’s main economic resource.
Day 14 Papeete, Tahiti / Disembark
Disembark this morning for your continued journey home.
Itinerary NotesCruise fare includes:
- 13 nights accommodation in selected cabin type aboard the freighter/passenger ship Aranui
- All meals for the duration of the cruise, including meals spent on shore
- Complimentary wine at meals
- All shore excursions
- Guided tours and educational opportunities
Cruise fare does not include:
- Port, cruise and tourist taxes. Total will vary by departure and cabin type selected (please contact us for rate schedule)
- Fuel surcharge of $80 per person
- Any airfare
- Travel insurance
- Gratuities and personal expenses
Deposit & Payment
Initial deposit is 30%, and most travelers will call our office and pay the deposit with a credit card. We accept Visa, Mastercard, AmEx, and Discover. Alternatively, you can send a check to our Missoula, Montana, office or register online at: https://www.adventure-life.com/forms/fourways.php
Final payment is due 70 days prior to departure.
Final payment by bank transfer, travelers checks, check or Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or Amex. Credit Card payments subject to 3% convenience fee and maximum $15,000 charge.
Booking last minute? No problem! Please contact one of our trip planners, and we can get you on your way if booking less than 70 days prior to departure.
Click here to see a copy of our Terms and Conditions.
|Days Prior to departure||Fee|
|61 days or more||$250|
|60-45 days||50% cruise cost|
|44-0 days||100% cruise cost|
- Ship Highlights
- Passengers : 200
The Aranui is a mixed passenger/cargo vessel that operates between Tahiti and the Marquesas. The name "Aranui" means "The Great Highway" in Maori, another great Polynesian culture.
She offers comfortable, air-conditioned accommodations for about two hundred passengers. Passengers will be able to sunbathe on deck, swim in the pool, or enjoy exotic tropical drinks while the Aranui wens her way among the islands of the Marquesas.
Accommodations classes are three classes of Suites, Deluxe, and Standard cabins.
The ship features a small boutique where various sundries, clothing and souvenirs are available. There are washing machines and dryers aboard, but dry cleaning is not available. There is also 2 bars and video room, which has a television, VCR and a small collection of videotapes. She also has a swimming pool and sunbathing space.
The electrical current in the cabins is 220 volt 50 cycle AC, using French-style plugs. The vessel accepts traveler's checks and credit cards for on-board purchases. Lock boxes are available on board for passenger convenience.
All meals are included in the price of the cruise. Meals are served in the Aranui's dining room in an informal setting. Depending on the number of passengers, there will be on or two seatings. There is buffet breakfast. Lunch and dinner menus will vary depending on what fresh ingredients are available. Complimentary wine is provided at both lunch and dinner. For shore excursions, a picnic lunch or a delicious meal at a local restaurant will be provided.
The vessel operates under the French flag, and her crew are all Polynesian, primarily Marquesans. They are extremely skillfull and very hospitable. It is often their custom to give an impromptu concert in the evenings, both for their own and for passengers pleasure.
The Aranui was built in Romania as a freighter and passenger vessel. Because of the number of passengers the vessel can carry, she was reclassifed as a passenger vessel. Thus, meeting the strict requirements of international SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) regulations and many safety features including life boats and lifte rafts and fire safety systems.
Two lower berths, outside cabin with private facilities.
Large outside cabin with queen bed, refrigerator, private facilities with bath. Navigation deck.
Suites J, H. Large outside cabin with queen bed, refrigerator, private facilities with bath and with or without balcony.
|Suites A-D, 1-4|
Suites A, B, C, D, 1, 2, 3, 4. Large outside cabin with queen bed, refrigerator, private facilities with bath and with or without balcony.
Suites E, F, K & G. Large outside cabin with queen bed, refrigerator, private facilities with bath and with or without balcony.