Raiatea, Yesterday and Today: A Guided Tour

4 Hours
Group Activity
Shore Excursion with Guaranteed Return to Ship

From (USD) $67 Per Adult / $34 Per Child

Raiatea, Yesterday and Today: A Guided Tour

4 Hours
Group Activity
Shore Excursion with Guaranteed Return to Ship

From (USD) $67 Per Adult / $34 Per Child

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Adult (Ages 12+)

Child (Ages 3-11)

    For Groups of 8 or more, please contact our GoTo Crew.


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      Raiatea, Yesterday and Today: A Guided Tour

      Raiatea, French Polynesia
      From (USD) $67 Per Adult / $34 Per Child
      • Inside scoop: Get a journalist's view on the island as your guide, Christian, fills your tour with anecdotes about Raiatea and its people, shows you odd objects at uncommon and picturesque places, and introduces you to local personalities.
      • Taputapuaeta Marae: Visit the most sacred marae (open-air temple) in Polynesia, founded by the legendary King Hiro – the site of human sacrifices to the war god and the launching point to discovery journeys to other islands.
      • Vanilla plantation: You'll know you're getting close by the wonderful scent in the air. Stroll among the climbing orchids that produce vanilla pods, and tour the facilities to see how vanilla is cultivated and processed.
      • Black pearl farm: Visit a working Tahitian pearl farm, explore the grounds, and learn how Tahiti's incomparable black pearls are grafted and harvested.
      • Uturoa: Explore the island's largest village; see the harbor, visit the market, walk around the city center, and take time to browse in the many shops.
      • Roundtrip transportation: Hotel pick-up and drop-off from most local hotels is included; a small fee may apply at some locations.
      About This Raiatea Tour

      There are 118 islands in French Polynesia, none more revered than Raiatea. The island they call "faraway heaven" and "sky with soft lights" is where intrepid explorers boarded ocean-worthy canoes and sailed off to discover, settle, and populate the islands in the Polynesian Triangle, from Hawaii to Easter Island to New Zealand.

      More specifically, on this tour you'll visit Taputapuaeta Marae, the actual spot where religious ceremonies before and after the voyages took place. Some voyagers, including the one who discovered Aotearoa (better known as New Zealand) returned to share the discovery.

      It was here that the sound of the conch pierced the air, bringing people together. Here the high priests performed chants, invoked prayers, and made offerings to the gods. Here the departing explorers prayed for protection during their journeys. And said their goodbyes.

      And from this most sacred of all marae, the ancestors of people who now inhabit Samoa, Tonga, the Marquesas, New Zealand, the Cook Islands, Hawaii, Easter Island, and the rest of French Polynesia set sail.

      Today, you can see petroglyphs carved in the stones by the shoreline at Taputapuaeta. And know that as the most important marae in all of Polynesia, Taputapuaeta saw everything from major tribal meetings to human sacrifices to the spread of Polynesian culture throughout the islands of the South Pacific.

      Ancient mariners

      It takes a lot of courage to travel hundreds of miles of open ocean in a canoe. But those ancient Polynesian mariners had something special on their side: the vaa-tauati. This twin-hulled voyaging canoe could stand up to violent storms, and was easily handled even when loaded with multiple families, domestic animals, and provisions for several weeks. No wonder the designers of today's competitive catamarans continue to borrow from those long-ago mariners.

      Getting prepared
      Tour Participation Requirements
      Great photo opportunities Great photo opportunities
      Wear sunscreen Wear sunscreen
      Bring money Bring money
      Bring water Bring water
      Wear comfortable shoes Wear comfortable shoes
      Wear light clothing Wear light clothing
      Wear Sunglasses Wear Sunglasses
      Wear Hat Wear Hat
      Cancellation policy

      Non-refundable if canceled within 7 days of requested services.

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