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  #41  
Old May 6th, 2012, 01:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Kinkacruiser View Post
Yes they are and here are their prices. I think you can do better at Kmart and you really don't need fins. In fact the private tour operators don't like you to use them in the coral gardens at Raiatea, as you can damage the coral.
Snorkel & mask $42
Fins only $40
Fins and mask/snorkel $99
Long fins and mask/snorkel $116

Shuttel to Kauai?.... from memory no as we saw lots of folks walking back to the ship Saw an ABC store there and some other touristy places. I guess it's a 10 min walk from the ship.
.

Thanks Heaps and Heaps...We didn't know about the Coral Gardens......wonder if it will be the same in Bora Bora.....

Also thanks for the update for the Kauai shuttle.....
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  #42  
Old May 6th, 2012, 11:43 AM
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Best snorkelling is in the Coral Gardens off Tahaa's NW coast. Bora Bora coral is not a spectacular.

Message for Bob,
Doing a Shorex with friends on Noumea, so won't be able to catch up...sorry
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  #43  
Old May 6th, 2012, 04:41 PM
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  #44  
Old May 6th, 2012, 05:02 PM
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Originally Posted by Kinkacruiser View Post
Best snorkelling is in the Coral Gardens off Tahaa's NW coast. Bora Bora coral is not a spectacular.

Message for Bob,
Doing a Shorex with friends on Noumea, so won't be able to catch up...sorry
Anna, no problem and i'll catch up to you another time

bob
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  #45  
Old May 7th, 2012, 05:53 PM
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editing to add......

and not very clear...but from the cam at the Bora Bora Pearl Beach Resort ,
you can just make out Dawn Princess at anchor in the lagoon...


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Last edited by Kiwi Kruzer; May 7th, 2012 at 06:01 PM.
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  #46  
Old May 7th, 2012, 06:07 PM
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That's nice, David. I "snapped" it on S/W at least 5 mins ago and it's still trying to save it! Doh. One place I'd love to visit.
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  #47  
Old May 7th, 2012, 07:28 PM
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Here it is a bit further round. Beautiful - love the rugged mountains.
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  #48  
Old May 7th, 2012, 07:54 PM
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Default Raiatea

Hi Anna

What did you end up doing in Raiatea?

I'm on the HAL 30 night Hawaii and Tahiti cruise in October out of San Diego (I wanted to avoid the time-wasting immigration queues in Hawaii) and at the moment I'm booked on a HAL excursion but wondering whether to cancel and take my chances on the dock.

I had read somewhere that as we're visiting on a Sunday most things, including the tourist desks would be closed, so any recommendations or thoughts you have would be appreciated.

Thanks
Bev
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  #49  
Old May 7th, 2012, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Bescotti View Post
Hi Anna

What did you end up doing in Raiatea?

I'm on the HAL 30 night Hawaii and Tahiti cruise in October out of San Diego (I wanted to avoid the time-wasting immigration queues in Hawaii) and at the moment I'm booked on a HAL excursion but wondering whether to cancel and take my chances on the dock.

I had read somewhere that as we're visiting on a Sunday most things, including the tourist desks would be closed, so any recommendations or thoughts you have would be appreciated.

Thanks
Bev
Bev we have been to Raiatea and not a lot in the town unless you get on a tour....being a sunday i dont know will be open.....when we were there last year they had an open air truck/bus which was very good and we had a few hours tour of the island and they take USD

maybe Anna can come up with more ideas and i didnt see to many taxis in town
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  #50  
Old May 7th, 2012, 09:09 PM
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Bev we have been to Raiatea and not a lot in the town unless you get on a tour....being a sunday i dont know will be open.....when we were there last year they had an open air truck/bus which was very good and we had a few hours tour of the island and they take USD

maybe Anna can come up with more ideas and i didnt see to many taxis in town
Thanks for your input. At present I'm booked on a coral drift snorkling excursion so was wondering if it was easy and obviously less expensive to pick up a similar tour dockside. So far all my other tours are private but if there wasn't going to be much available once off the ship I wanted to ensure I had a snorkling trip booked.
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  #51  
Old May 7th, 2012, 09:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Bescotti View Post
Thanks for your input. At present I'm booked on a coral drift snorkling excursion so was wondering if it was easy and obviously less expensive to pick up a similar tour dockside. So far all my other tours are private but if there wasn't going to be much available once off the ship I wanted to ensure I had a snorkling trip booked.
Bev, Anna had something arranged in Raiatea so she'll get back to you

bob
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  #52  
Old May 8th, 2012, 12:21 PM
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Hi Bev,
Just off the Tahaa Island Resort ( NW coast) are the famous coral gardens and it's by far the best coral formation experince in French Polynesia. This is what I did in Raiatea. It's a 30 min boat ride out there and our guide took us on two drifts (about 300m each). You glide down canyons and see lots of carla and fish. Our last drift was more challenging, but exciting. Fins are OK and helps you in the drift current. There is abou 1ft-3ft between you and the coral, but here's not sharp bits. I actually used some of the smoother formations to help me manoeuver. Our guide had snorkel and fins onboard.
The Princess price was $140 which is overpriced, but I wanted to be sure of getting to this spot. Some of the ashore guide will take to an inferior and closer site for $40. The guide we had was a very nice Frenchman (contracted by Princess) but his boat had West Coast Charters (or tours?) signwriting. Maybe a google would help.
Bruno Fabre goes to Tahaa gardens and a few other places around Tahaa, otherwise be off the ship as early as possible and seek out a local guide but insist on the drift snorkel at Tahaa.

Hi Bob,
I'm sue we will cross paths again onboard. Enjoy your cruise.
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Last edited by Kinkacruiser; May 8th, 2012 at 12:26 PM.
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  #53  
Old May 8th, 2012, 12:52 PM
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I just lost the entire post on Bora Bora , so you'll have to wait for that awesome blog until tomorrow....
Some days the internet speed is worse than ever.
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  #54  
Old May 8th, 2012, 08:44 PM
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Hi Anna

Many thanks for the info on the coral drift snorkelling. At this stage I might stick with the HAL excursion because I'm not high enough up the food chain (yet) to get early tendering at Raiatea so there will possibly be hundreds of others ashore ahead of me. The HAL excursion is US$129 so I'm happy to pay that to be guaranteed the coral drift snorkelling at the best location. I found West Coast Charters online but I know from past experience the operators the cruise lines use are generally entirely contracted to them for the day the ship is in port.

My cruise is in Bora Bora for 2 days and I'm doing different excursions with Patrick on both days so I look forward to reading of your experience there also.

Bev
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  #55  
Old May 8th, 2012, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bescotti View Post
Hi Anna

Many thanks for the info on the coral drift snorkelling. At this stage I might stick with the HAL excursion because I'm not high enough up the food chain (yet) to get early tendering at Raiatea so there will possibly be hundreds of others ashore ahead of me. The HAL excursion is US$129 so I'm happy to pay that to be guaranteed the coral drift snorkelling at the best location. I found West Coast Charters online but I know from past experience the operators the cruise lines use are generally entirely contracted to them for the day the ship is in port.

My cruise is in Bora Bora for 2 days and I'm doing different excursions with Patrick on both days so I look forward to reading of your experience there also.

Bev
Bev Raiatea is not a tender port...you dock there
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  #56  
Old May 8th, 2012, 10:24 PM
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Thanks Bob, for some reason I thought it was a tender port so this will make it a lot easier all round if it docks.

Bev
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  #57  
Old May 9th, 2012, 11:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bescotti View Post
Hi Anna

Many thanks for the info on the coral drift snorkelling. At this stage I might stick with the HAL excursion because I'm not high enough up the food chain (yet) to get early tendering at Raiatea so there will possibly be hundreds of others ashore ahead of me. The HAL excursion is US$129 so I'm happy to pay that to be guaranteed the coral drift snorkelling at the best location. I found West Coast Charters online but I know from past experience the operators the cruise lines use are generally entirely contracted to them for the day the ship is in port.

My cruise is in Bora Bora for 2 days and I'm doing different excursions with Patrick on both days so I look forward to reading of your experience there also.

Bev
Hi Bev,
There's no tendering at Raiatea by the way. To travel so far and not experience the Tahaa Gardens Coral drift would be disappointing, so I'd stick with the Hal tour.
I can guatantee that Patrick's Bora Bora tour will be the best day of your cruise..at least the shorex side of it. Go with a group of friends/shipmates/roll call members, as you'll have more fun (just my thoughts). Patrick has the edge on all other circle lagoon operators as the men have great fun-loving personalities and are warm, sincere, informative and give the tour the ambiance it truly deserves.The tour also come with it's unique traditional packaging...decorated boats, traditional dress, cooking and local food (except for the French champagne). The website photos doesn't do the tour justice and yes, we did all of those things...ray feeding, snorkelling, swimming and feasting on a wide variety of hangi and BBQ foods. I'm giving this tour a 20/10 rating. I hope you enjoy it as much as our roll call group did. We filled 2 outriggers but I know there are 3 outriggers, each hold 12. The "bed" at the front on the outrigger is fabulous.
Anyone who misses this excursion hasn't expeienced Bora Bora.
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  #58  
Old May 9th, 2012, 12:01 PM
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I guess most of you know that the Dawn is being spruced up in Brisbane at the end of this cruise. Some of the passengers are looking to extend the cruise by 2 days. The word is that the Dawn will be going to Japan next year and so will the Sun, but I have no idea what ships will replace her.

We ordered 2 seats on the bus to the airport ($29 each) and there is a Captain's Circle cocktail party tonight. No more Vista Lounge handshake, rather an Atrium affair.
Tomorrow we are in Pago Pago, so I'll share the good oil with you from there. We have a private tour for 6 booked with Betty.

It's 6am and still dark, so me thinks our clocks will be going back from tonight.
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Last edited by Kinkacruiser; May 9th, 2012 at 12:03 PM.
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  #59  
Old May 9th, 2012, 06:35 PM
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I guess most of you know that the Dawn is being spruced up in Brisbane at the end of this cruise. Some of the passengers are looking to extend the cruise by 2 days. The word is that the Dawn will be going to Japan next year and so will the Sun, but I have no idea what ships will replace her.
.
gosh I hope not... she is suppose to take us to europe next year !!!
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  #60  
Old May 9th, 2012, 06:44 PM
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gosh I hope not... she is suppose to take us to europe next year !!!

The Sun will be going to Japan ..Heres the article from Princess

http://www.princess.com/news/article...ticleId=na1225
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