Hao Atoll to Fakarava
||Hao Atoll, Fakarava Lagoon
||May 11 - May 21, 2014
The far southeast end of the Tuamotu archipelago is just about as far away from nothing as you can get. Stretching across 1,000 miles of French Polynesia, the "dangerous archipelago" are all ancient mountains, now disappeared below the surface and only their fringing reefs have survived. At eye level the Tuamotus can hardly be seen (which is where the "dangerous" comes in- wrecks abound in this part of the world) - little more than coral outcrops that barely clear the surface. Palm trees and the hardiest of plants take purchase in a few places, but real estate is certainly in short supply. But this lack of terrestrial abundance belies an infinite sea of wonder. Each atoll typically has at least one navigable pass from the deep ocean to shallow but navigable lagoon. These lagoons fill and empty every day on the tides- creating powerful currents. These passes give those of us daring enough to venture into these areas two magnificent delights: 1) Epic waves and 2) Epic sea life.
It was on this very itinerary in 2008 that we were able to snorkel with literally dozens and dozens of reef sharks, and even had an encounter that got a little ugly spearfishing (not to worry, I got the fish!). When I think back on all the trips we operated during the Best Odyssey, this one still has a very special place in my heart. We got almost no wind (very unusual for this time of year), but it was just simply a radical adventure. Hopefully Seon has more sense than I did and not take you to our secret spot on Hariaki en route from Hao to Fakarava as it remains to this day the diciest pass I have ever navigated, but if conditions do go totally calm, you're in for a treat. The flight from Tahiti to Hao Atoll will blow your mind- this is a very, very special part of the world.
To read about this trip back in 2008: SHARKS. And an article for your viewing pleasure: Pleasure and a Little Pain.
To see a video from this part of the world (note- it's not Tahiti!):
Getting there: International flight to Papeete, Tahiti (PPT) on Air Tahiti Nui, then domestic on Air Tahiti to Hao Atoll, and return from Fakarava.
- Awesome kiting
- Fantastic Remote Pearl Farms
- Insane Shark snorkeling/ Diving
- Radical Flat water lagoons
- Zero chance of other boats
- Distance between Hao and Fakarava (all downwind though)
- Unreliable wind this early
- Very tricky navigation
|Air||24C / 76F|
|Mean Avg Wind||16 kts|
|Cabin 1 - Cabrinha - Guests: Cabrinha|
|Cabin 3 - Cabrinha - Guests: Cabrinha|
|Cabin 4 - Cabrinha - Guests: Cabrinha|