Tales from the South Pacific
21 June 2010 | On passage to Tonga
First Mate Hels
After the busyness of Papeete on Tahiti island it has been a delight to escape to nearby Moorea and visit Cooks Bay and Oponuhu Bay for some superb snorkelling and general chilling. Johns's sister and husband joined us for this and beyond including an overnight to Raitea/Tahaa and then Bora Bora.
Each island is unique and quite different and stunning in its own way. With high volcanic peaks and surrounded by coral reef forming a natural lagoon it is really a yachties paradise. It has been lovely having Kimberly and Roland on board - the kids have been spoilt rotten and we have all been treated to Kimberley's fabulous galley creations.
After a quick overnight at Maupiti, a beautiful unspoiled island which is apparently like Bora Bora 30 years ago, and fortunately due to its treacherous narrow lagoon entrance it should remain unspoiled , we then headed off on passage to Tonga. We had originally planned to either go via the Southern Cook islands of Aitutaki and Palmerstone and then Nuie or via the idllyic tropical island of Suvarov but due to the boisterous trade winds conditions we have decided to continue blasting across to Tonga in one fell swoop! The kids are coping admirably and continuing their studies although yesterday with the rising seas schoolwork was abandoned in favour of DS andTV. I guess you can't blame them??!!
I almost forgot to mention but our new purchase up on the foredeck is a green plastic lightweight kayak. Nicknamed Diskarina (the model is the Discokayak) and next to the yellow Nikarina dinghy our foredeck is emblazoned in Aussie green and gold. We are also back flying the Red ensign maritime flag (essentially a red version of the Aussie flag) as now people seem to recognise the southern cross stars whereas in Europe we were constantly mistaken for flying a British flag (not that there is anything wrong with that!!!). The kayak has already proven a huge hit with the grown ups and littlies. Next to our friends on Aussie boat Grace with their 3 kids we have seen a few hilarious water gun fights between their kayak and ours (girls versus boys but of course!).
We are looking forward to exploring the island group of Vava'u in northern Tonga with its 36 anchorages over the next few weeks. After that it will be Fiji, New Caledonia and then Oz.
Ciao for now - the Nika crew