Paul Gauguin Cruises – Polynesian Paradise!


Hello Everyone,

I ended my last Blog for The World’s Greatest Vacations by promising you more about my recent amazing French Polynesian cruise experience onboard the ms Paul Gauguin of Paul Gauguin Cruises.

Our 10 day voyage took us to some of the most beautiful islands in The Society Islands as well as the Tuamotus Islands. After joining the ship in Papeete, Tahiti we sailed overnight to our first island, Huahine, in the Society Islands and after a delicious open air breakfast on board ship at Le Grill, my wife and I took the ship’s smooth and efficient tender service ashore and stepped off onto our first island paradise. The beach has almost no-one on it and it was so unimaginably perfect that, as my wife said, it was almost emotional! Bright blue tropical fish swam around us as we paddled in the warm water and a lady from one of the yachts anchored off the beach showed us how the outline of the mountains there formed the shape of a reclining lady! Later, a troupe of local children came on board ship to give us a traditional Polynesian show in Le Grand Salon show lounge.

That first day was capped off by the Captain’s Cocktail Party after we had sailed for Bora Bora, followed by an excellent dinner of Moonfish in L’Etoile dining room!

Next was two days in Bora Bora and a visit to Paul Gauguin’s private beach, which for me was the most beautiful of the whole trip. Standing just knee deep in the crystal clear water with stingrays swimming around us was truly unforgettable! We chatted there to a lovely couple who were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary and they told us that as the ship was remaining at anchor overnight, they were able to have an intimate anniversary dinner of their own on the marina section of the ship at the stern (or back) of the ship – what a delight that must have been and what an excellent service by Paul Gauguin!

From Bora Bora we sailed to the Tuamotus Islands and the atolls of Rangiroa and Fakarava. Needless to say they were beautiful and it was amazing to see the ocean waves crashing onto the outside of the coral reefs forming the atolls and then to compare it with the crystal clear and sheltered waters inside the lagoon.

After that it was two days in the stunning island of Moorea, famous for the uniquely shaped mountain used in the movie “South Pacific”. Possibly my favourite island of all, we took the circle island tour which included going to the famous lookout point for some superb views and photo opportunities. The view from the viewpoint just above the beach looking across the varying coloured seawater, past the coral reef and across to the island of Tahiti just a few miles away was one none of us will ever forget!

That evening it was back to Papeete, Tahiti from where it had all begun and after yet another superb dinner, an excellent professional and award winning folkloric dance troupe performed in the show lounge for some of the finest Polynesian music and dance we had ever seen!

It was truly sad to disembark for the long journey home, having made many new friends from both passengers and crew and all of us vowing to return to experience it all again in the not too distant future! I wholeheartedly recommend a Paul Gauguin cruise to you – you will not regret it!!

Peter Philpott
Captain (recently retired)
Queen Mary 2.