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Adventure Unveiled: Leading Expeditions in Moorea, French Polynesia

Written by: The Gowings Boys
Adventure Unveiled: Leading Expeditions in Moorea, French Polynesia

Swimming with Majestic Creatures

Moorea's waters are a haven for marine enthusiasts, offering intimate encounters with a mesmerising array of sea creatures. Imagine swimming alongside majestic humpback whales, the gentle giants of the ocean – groups of 2, 3, 5, sometimes 9 whales interacting with you at the same time. Mums and calves, adolescents, juveniles, all with unique behaviours. I did this for the first time in 2018 and fell in love with humpback whales. This year was my first time swimming with Sperm whales, a species of toothed whale much rarer to see (let alone swim with in Moorea). I was fortunate enough to get in the water with a large male who was leading the way for his pod. This experience will stay with me forever; the sound of his clicks as he passed us was so electrical, like nothing I’ve ever experienced. My group also got to swim with pilot whales a few times this year – these guys are my favourite; they’re like a cross between a dolphin and whale and can be very inquisitive. They’re often followed by oceanic white tip sharks. When in the water with these sharks, you need to stay calm and not act like prey. If they swim towards you, you need to hold your ground, and sometimes I would put my camera housing between me and them to ward them off. Other species we got to swim with include rough-toothed dolphins, spotted Eagle rays, lemon sharks, and grey reef sharks. There were two orca sightings while I was there, so I’m hoping to get to swim with them next year!

 

Island Exploration in a Day

Despite its compact size, Moorea's charm lies in its diverse landscapes. With the ability to circumnavigate the island in just an hour, expeditions allow guests to explore various peaks, each offering breathtaking panoramic views of the surrounding turquoise waters. This intimate exploration creates a sense of connection with the island's natural beauty. My favourite thing about being on land is actually the roads. The views of the peaks and mountains from the winding roads are so picturesque.

 

A Week-Long Expedition

The seven-day expedition, designed for a limited group of five guests, emphasises intimate encounters with the island's wildlife. This exclusive approach ensures that participants not only witness the beauty of Moorea but also forge a deeper connection with its marine inhabitants. The carefully curated itinerary allows for unhurried exploration, fostering a sense of awe and appreciation for the island's biodiversity.

 

Gowings Whale Trust Sponsorship

The expedition is further elevated by the sponsorship of Gowings Whale Trust, enabling the capture of stunning photographs that document the island's marine life. This collaboration enhances the educational aspect of the expedition, contributing to the conservation efforts of these incredible creatures.

 

Poisson Cru: A Culinary Delight

A gastronomic journey through Moorea is incomplete without savouring Poisson Cru, a local delicacy that captures the essence of the island. This dish features fresh raw fish, often tuna or mahi-mahi, marinated in a symphony of coconut milk, lime juice, vegetables, and a dash of island spices. The result is a refreshing and flavourful dish that perfectly complements the tropical surroundings. The food has French, Polynesian, and Chinese influence.

 

In conclusion, leading expeditions in Moorea offer a harmonious blend of culinary delights, awe-inspiring marine encounters, and the exploration of a pristine island paradise. With a focus on intimacy and appreciation for nature, this seven-day adventure promises to leave a lasting imprint on the hearts of those fortunate enough to embark on this once-in-a-lifetime journey.