Quick visit to Moorea

Moorea Travel Blog

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Yuck! The weather was horrible when we awoke at 8:00; very low ceiling and rain. The ship was anchored in Cook’s Bay, Moorea. (It's not "Moo-ray-ah", it's Moh-oh-ray-ah") Having no plans for the day, we had a leisurely breakfast with Russ & Janet and finally left the ship around 10:45. Consistent with our luck, the rain had slowed down a lot by then and it stopped minutes after we got ashore! We tried to rent a car at the Avis booth on the dock but they had no more available. Here we saw the trip’s only example of visible greed on the part of the locals. There were two people in the parking lot each trying to get passengers to take their “free” shuttle to their pearl shops. They were quite pushy and were almost fighting over the passengers.

We’ve seen far worse in places like Jamaica but I’m hoping we weren’t seeing a harbinger of things to come in these islands. That would truly be a shame. Let’s hope we just happened to see two local people who happened to be rude.

Anyway, about that time, a woman drove in to the lot and asked whether we wanted to rent a car. The price was reasonable so she drove us about a kilometer up the road to the office of “Albert’s Rent-a-Car” and we got a nice little Citroen for 6000 cfp for the day. Now, I say “nice” but let me explain that this is relative as every one of the cars we rented anywhere in these islands were pretty beat up. Lots of dents, scratches, etc. The tour books all say you must have them make a note of every flaw.

If you've ever rented a car, you're familiar with the little pictures on the rental contract that they mark with the locations of any damage. Here in the islands we found that the papers were often so marked up that I think you could drive off a cliff and be covered! Invariably, though, the agents were helpful in even pointing out flaws I’d missed. The other thing is that none of the cars we rented had full tanks when we got them. You were simply expected to return them at the same (sometimes very low) level.

Once in the car, we headed clockwise around the island (not sure why we always go that way…) and stopped at a great lookout on a hill. There was a bus there and who should get off the bus but Winston & Natalie. They said they were bored to tears having already spent several hours on the bus trip.

We invited them to come with us but, since that meant retracing their steps and since they were almost back to the ship, they declined.

The Tiki Village Theater looked interesting so we stopped but found it closed. However, the shop was open and the owner was most gracious. The village has a number of artisans living there and on all but Sunday they are doing their work in the open for visitors to see. He also showed us a floating honeymoon cottage and his own floating cottage next to it. He “commutes” to work in a tiny outrigger canoe. They also have shows and you can get married there. Pretty nifty; I wish it had been open.

We stopped for lunch at “L’Aventure Steack House & Grill” (their spelling, not mine). There we had a fondue Bourguignon.

It was fantastic but HUGE. We ate until we were stuffed and still fully 50% of the beef went back to the kitchen.

We dropped off the car and returned to the ship by about 3:15. Russ and Janet dropped by for a visit and to drop off a book Russ thought I might like. After they left we packed (sigh), changed and had the bags outside by about 6:00. I played roulette ‘til about 7:15, then we headed for the Night Club. The duo started on time but after only one tune, the guitar man walked off! This guy is bad news. It worked out well, though, because, we went down to deck 5 and ran into a Jesse, Pat, Chris, Christa, Brian, Sandy and, eventually Maggie & Robert. We were especially eager to see these last two as, while the rest of us would spend the next day on the ship, they would be disembarking in the wee hours for Australia. After taking lots of pictures and exchanging cards, we had dinner, attended a Polynesian show and hit the sack.

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Moorea is located only 9 miles from Tahiti. A number of ferries connect the two islands and even large trucks can be accommodated on some of them. The smaller, faster ferries can make the trip in about 30 minutes. The ferry dock in Moorea is located Vaiare but there's not even a restaurant there! If you want to do more than ride over and back, you need to either take ground transportation with you or find some once you arrive. We were in Moorea on two different days but both were overcast so the island was not at it's best. Even at that, however, the water colors were absolutely vibrant so I can only imagine what the sun brings!
Gaugin allegedly lived here.
Gaugin allegedly lived here.
Russ & Janet
Russ & Janet
Krista & Chris
Krista & Chris
Pat & Jesse
Pat & Jesse
Maggie & Robert
Maggie & Robert
Moorea
photo by: SheLuvz2Fly