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Dunner

Suggestions for tours for someone with a bad back?

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This is my friends first time on the Paul Gauguin and the first time to the French Polynesia islands. We will be doing the 11 night Society and Cook islands. I have been raving about this area for 5 years so want his experience to be as special as ours was!!!

 

 Our stops with be:

Tahiti-

Huahine-

Aitutaki-

Rarotonga-

Bora, Bora-probably a half day at the private motu other half a day?

Bora , Bora

Taha- already have plans at the private motu

Moorea-maybe rent a car and ride around--but is that really bumpy??

Moorea-

Some of the tours I did the last time I was there I am not sure he could handle because we had to take a very bumpy speed boat or a very bumpy truck.

I know we can pick and poke through shore excursions but was wondering if someone had any suggestions? His wife really wants to go but we have to find things he can do.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

In Bora Bora there is a very gentle snorkel excursion we took in December. Good size catamaran accommodating 8-12 people. Very calm in the lagoon as you probably remember, if the weather is favorable. It was a relatively slow boat. The operators are extremely solicitous and able to update you on your cruise as to weather conditions. It is Lagoon Service  http://lagoonservice.com/

They have a pristine private island where they serve a wonderful lunch. The thing I enjoyed most about it is that it did not feel touristy at all- the snorkeling sites were quite varied but all doable with a sensitive back. (We've done may other snorkel excursions but portions of them could potentially be too taxing for your buddy.) Our guide was very aware of passengers limitations.

 

In Huahine I can recommend a wonderful day afloat on a 12 passenger sailboat. We've done it twice and both times it was superb. Lunch is BYO, and there is a huge grocery store next to the dock (right where PG is anchored). Lovely English speaking French couple run things and they are both characters. You get a nice taste of what your day sailing would be like on the website- very lazy and scenic.  https://www.tahitisailingcharter.com/index.php?lang=english 

 

Driving around Moorea might be bumpy- being in and out of the car all day maybe not so good. But the dolphin whale watching tour with Dr. Poole is WONDERFUL and should not missed. I do not recall it being bumpy. PG most likely offers this and you can contact Dr. Poole direct to ask if it is appropriate for someone with back difficulties. Here's the reviews on TA https://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g309685-d1160332-Reviews-Dr_Poole_s_Dolphin_and_Whale_Tour-Moorea_Society_Islands.html

His website is here http://www.drmichaelpoole.com/

and email is listed on it if you want more details. I'd be amazed if PG isn't offering his tour.

The other thing you might consider is a day pass at the Hilton Moorea. Beautiful property and some of the best snorkeling on Moorea. Very reasonable with a fantastic full menu lunch included. You can hire a service to pick you up at the dock- about $30-40 RT for 2. Albert's or Torea Transport.

 

You might want to post this on the PG board as well. Your buddy's limitations should not prove to be a challenge. I'm envious of you and anyone else going to FP soon! Can you tell by my wordiness that I kind of like it there? (My next trip not till 4/2020) Have a wonderful cruise..

Edited by Petoonya

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Thanks so much for the suggestions!! I will pass on this info. Petoonya- We are looking at Oct. 3, 2020 so you will be getting a P.G. fix before me!!. We will be getting together with my friends to discuss tour possibilities. If you or Tiki or anyone else has more options feel free to post them. P.S. We stayed at the Hilton on Moorea and loved it so that is a good idea. We also went on Dr.Poole"s tour--couldn't remember if the ride was really bumpy so now I can add that tour on their list to ponder.

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22 hours ago, Dunner said:

Thanks so much for the suggestions!! I will pass on this info. Petoonya- We are looking at Oct. 3, 2020 so you will be getting a P.G. fix before me!!.

Be getting an FP fix on O, not an FP fix on PG, lol. (These abbreviations!)

I hope you're considering a trip to Coral Gardens in Tahaa despite the day on the motu? It maybe *could* be too much bumping on rocks (but it's soft bumping) for your buddy but OMG, it is magnificent. It's like watching an IMAX of fish except they are right there in fingers reach. Never done anything like it! I know you said that you're doing the motu on Tahaa....so maybe it's off the table but if you can get a pass from your friend for you to do it for just part of the day it is soooooo worth it. I hope your your friend's wife decides he can go. My husband had spinal cord surgery and he tolerates a lot except for the bumpity stuff on boats. There was nothing he couldn't do except for zodiacs. We did the Coral Gardens on Tahaa twice and he had no trouble at all.

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Petoonya-We are getting together tomorrow to make our final decision!!! Maybe your info will relieve their minds. One of my favourite days is the P.G. all exclusive motu day. -----but------I will definitely look into the coral gardens. Need two days on that island to do both things at our leisure---wouldn't that be great! Thanks for giving me other ideas.

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Petoonya- I just looked up the coral garden. It refreshed my memory that I did look at that tour last time but I read that it wasn't really suitable for non swimmers and you should be moderate snorkeler and the current was quite swift so it made me a little nervous. I don't swim, but do lots of water sports with a lifejacket (of course) and I have snorkeled about 7 times. Not sure if 7 times is a beginner?

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I've done the drift snorkel at least a dozen times …. and last year was my time to get a coral cut. It can be a swift ride and if you don't feel comfortable maneuvering around coral and rocks on your own ability you might want to take a pass. Still have the scar from last year  ….

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Dunner- if you don't feel confident in the water it's probably not suitable. It's shallow and not more than 5 feet deep anywhere but the current varies and when strong can knock you around. We always bring protective equipment- gloves, rash guard, pants, booties with us, but most go without. It's such an unforgettable experience and thought I'd mention if you have a few hours where you feel you can go off on your own. Snorkeling 7 times would qualify you, but if you have doubts would not attempt.

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Well,

it sounds like fun and boy do I hate to miss something fun-but I am only comfortable in the water to a certain extent so I guess I will leave it to others to enjoy. I would hate to say afterward--boy was this a mistake.  Thanks so much to the two of you for your input.

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Dunner. Found a Youtube that shows pretty well what it's like so you do don't miss anything! It would definitely not be for your friend but it's like nothing else.

   

 

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Kahuna- curious.....when you say "our little video" of the Tahaa snorkel....are you married to Zelle Olson by any chance who took this video? Zelle is a videographer in Paso Robles CA where I lived for many years. Maybe you cruised with Zelle? It's a lovely video and Zelle does phenomenal work but when you say "our video" I wonder if it's your family? If not and anyone is having a wedding or gathering near Paso Robles  she's the very best! She was on a Tahiti cruise we did not long ago.

 

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1 hour ago, Petoonya said:

Kahuna- curious.....when you say "our little video" of the Tahaa snorkel....are you married to Zelle Olson by any chance who took this video? Zelle is a videographer in Paso Robles CA where I lived for many years. Maybe you cruised with Zelle? It's a lovely video and Zelle does phenomenal work but when you say "our video" I wonder if it's your family? If not and anyone is having a wedding or gathering near Paso Robles  she's the very best! She was on a Tahiti cruise we did not long ago.

 

 

Zelle and I have been married 20 years this month. I promised if she married me we would go to FP every year, I've kept that promise. I am a Bearcat, class of 1973  ….

 

We shoot pictures and video together, then Zelle edits the videos and I edit the pictures. 

 

No that I've been exposed  ….. do tell who you are 😉

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WOW Kahuna you are amazing! I LOVE your work. Went to a wedding several years back and it must have been you and your wife working. Your video of Tahaa drift snorkel is breathtaking.

I'm a nobody, a retired RN who just enjoys grandkids- and Tahiti.

Wow- it's an honor to meet Tahitian Big Kahuna and Zelle! Best wishes to you.

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50 minutes ago, Petoonya said:

WOW Kahuna you are amazing! I LOVE your work. Went to a wedding several years back and it must have been you and your wife working. Your video of Tahaa drift snorkel is breathtaking.

I'm a nobody, a retired RN who just enjoys grandkids- and Tahiti.

Wow- it's an honor to meet Tahitian Big Kahuna and Zelle! Best wishes to you.

 

Come on now  …. you can't get off the hook that easy …. tip me off with something so I know who you are.

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I'm a keep to myself person these days Kahuna! You would not have known me then I left PR in 1968 for Santa Monica. My husband went to med school with a guy who practiced in PR so we still visit from time to time. You do have a fantastic professional reputation! On Sirena, May 2017 someone told me you two were on board. Is that possible? Now I understand why you post all those drop dead gorgeous photos on this board- and also why you keep going back.

 

We don't go back to Tahiti until April 2020 and it's the PPT to SFO on Regatta. Week in BB before. Then not back again till 17 day 11/2020 on Wind Spirit. Dang if Wind Spirit is still cruising then! You've heard the story about her losing propulsion for a short time in Raiatea a couple weeks ago and she's grounded in PPT last 2 cruises. Soooooooooo sad for those people. We cruised Wind Song the year before she was scuttled.

 

How about you- when do you go back?

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5 minutes ago, Petoonya said:

I'm a keep to myself person these days Kahuna! You would not have known me then I left PR in 1968 for Santa Monica. My husband went to med school with a guy who practiced in PR so we still visit from time to time. You do have a fantastic professional reputation! On Sirena, May 2017 someone told me you two were on board. Is that possible? Now I understand why you post all those drop dead gorgeous photos on this board- and also why you keep going back.

 

We don't go back to Tahiti until April 2020 and it's the PPT to SFO on Regatta. Week in BB before. Then not back again till 17 day 11/2020 on Wind Spirit. Dang if Wind Spirit is still cruising then! You've heard the story about her losing propulsion for a short time in Raiatea a couple weeks ago and she's grounded in PPT last 2 cruises. Soooooooooo sad for those people. We cruised Wind Song the year before she was scuttled.

 

How about you- when do you go back?

 

March 2020  …. 

 

You do know the PG took on several from the Wind Spirit …. so some got a great cruise. 

 

Let me know when your in town, we'll meet up and talk FP 🙂

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It was great that some were taken on PG. Wind Spirit looks like a new ship on the outside but the crew told us the insides were headed for the last roundup. UGHHHHH- so sad. Having a family reunion in PR in the fall- be fun to meet. We're WS and O people and realize you are PG, but who knows what the future may bring. Would love to do L' Excursion Bleue with you. Bruno is one of our favorite people and know he's your buddy too. Best wishes TBK.

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13 hours ago, Petoonya said:

It was great that some were taken on PG. Wind Spirit looks like a new ship on the outside but the crew told us the insides were headed for the last roundup. UGHHHHH- so sad. Having a family reunion in PR in the fall- be fun to meet. We're WS and O people and realize you are PG, but who knows what the future may bring. Would love to do L' Excursion Bleue with you. Bruno is one of our favorite people and know he's your buddy too. Best wishes TBK.

 

I believe I said …. "talk French Polynesia" 😉

 

Lets plan on it

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I agree with Petoonya------that video was spectacular!!! I could it watch it over and over again!  Thanks!

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