Considered the second largest island in French Polynesia, Raiatea is situated approximately 120 miles northwest of Tahiti. For the Polynesian "Maohi," ancestor of today's Tahitian, Raiatea was known as "Sacred Havai'i" and was the center of royalty, religion, culture and history. The principal village is Uturoa, with a population of over 10,000. This bustling port town features a colorful market and arts and crafts shops along the waterfront. Raiatea is currently undergoing a renaissance, with special attention being given to preserve the island's rich culture and heritage.
Raiatea's importance as both a religious and historical center for all of Polynesia is complemented by a wealth of archaelogical sites, tropical scenery and reef fringed lagoons.
Board a covered motorized catamaran for an exciting lagoon cruise across the turquoise lagoons of this majestic island once called "HAVAIKI" by the original Polynesian settlers. Enjoy spectacular views of Tapioi mountain and the mythical Temehani plateau surrounded by lush deep green valleys. Learn from our local guides fascinating stories and legends of yesteryear to unveil the history of its people and fauna. A stop at Marae Taputapuatea, a UNESCO protected site, our guides will accompany you for a walk through these sacred grounds to witness the ancient stones and learn of ceremonies and worshipped practices of yesteryear.
On your return route, we pass Faaroa bay where the original sailing canoes departed from to discover distant lands including New Zealand, Hawaii and Easter Islands.
Glide along the tranquil Faaroa River on this half-day kayak adventure that makes the most of Raiatea's natural wonders. Follow your guide along the waterway lined with dense foliage, verdant cliffs and a vibrant bird and wildlife population. Take in the scenic beauty, and bring your camera for wonderful pictures.
Board a covered motorized catamaran for a lagoon cruise to the north-west of Raiatea to discover the magical lagoon that is shared with sister island, Tahaa. Explore subaquatic fauna and flora with our naturalists guides in pristine waters from our easy staircase extension into the turquoise waters.
Tour the Anapa Pearl Farm Reef House situated over the lagoon, and then, don snorkel and mask for a swim amongst the oyster beds. You'll have time to shop for black pearls afterwards. Fresh fruit, juice, and local beer are included on this excursion.
Join a drift snorkel excursion for experienced snorkelers. From an isolated motu off Tahaa, let the current carry you through a channel in the reef to your waiting boat. Afterwards, enjoy free time in the lagoon or on the motu. Fresh fruits and juices are included on this half-day excursion.