TX7G Nuku Hiva Island2014-08-09 16:49:29
TX7G,Nuku Hiva Island,Marquesas Islands
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Nuku Hiva (also known as Ile Marchand, Madison Island) is largest island of Marquesas islands, French Polynesia.
Nuku Hiva Island
Nuku Hiva Island is a jewel dropped in the South Pacific among the fabulous Marquesas Islands. If a desert island type of vacation is what you’re looking for, then your search ends here!Majestically rising from the sea are the twin volcanoes that gave birth to the island. On one of these volcanoes, one of the sides has eroded to such an extent that farmers use the plateau that has been left behind. The other volcano has a side that has given way to form Taiohae Bay. Here, visiting yachts pull in to explore the interior of the island.The volcano is a breathtaking backdrop to Taiohae town, which is the capital of the island and boasts a beautiful curved harbor at its base. The town can only be reached by water or by a dangerous cliff face.
Oddly enough, and quite unusual for this part of the world, one-third of the island has been made into a desert by the trade winds that constantly blow. The mountains protect that portion of the land, but have also turned it into something reminiscent of the outback in Australia. Apart from a few cattle ranches and such, not much activity goes on in this area.
Things to See and Do on NukuHiva Island
French Polynesia is well known for its pearls that are harvested from the sea and NukuHiva is no exception. There are, however, exquisite examples of carving to be seen around the island. The locals carve wood, bones, or stones to show off intricate designs that can also be seen on their tattooed bodies. Visit the Monument de Herman Melville or the Cathėdrale de Notre-Dame des Marquises to see exceptional examples of their work. In fact, artisans are only too happy to have visitors watch them at work and sell a piece or two for their labors.
Drop into Rose Corser’s Boutique to view many ancient pieces of art in the museum that she created to house these rare antiquities. Some pieces date back almost two thousand years, but there are also some great souvenirs available to purchase.
For Lazy Beach Days
Of course, visiting a desert island-style destination like Nuku Hiva would not be complete without venturing down to the beaches and dipping your toes in the ocean surrounding the island. There are boat trips, snorkeling, scuba diving, and just about any other water-based sport that you can imagine. Avid reality TV watchers may also notice that this island is where one of the Survivor series was filmed!
Trips off the Island
For an interesting day trip, take a boat over to UaHukaIsland, which is approximately one-quarter the size of NukuHiva and only has about six hundred inhabitants. Its diminutive size does not mean that there is nothing to see. It has no less than four museums and houses the only botanical garden in the entire region.UaHuka is also the base for a huge colony of sooty terns (birds) that number in the millions. They are so noisy that passing ships can hear them from far out in the ocean!
Lastly, NukuHiva has very little in the way of roads, so even the locals travel from place to place by boat instead. Bookings for these trips can be done at most accommodations and the locals often hire out their own vehicles as taxis as well. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a friendlier place for a desert island vacation!
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TX7G, Nuku Hiva Island, Marquesas Islands
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