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Papeete was actually the end of the first half of our cruise and while some people disembarked, we were able to take a bus tour around the sland of Tahiti.

After lunch, about 400 new guests embarked.

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This was a group of "young" musicians on the wharf to welcome us

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and this building was erected to take the exchange of luggage.

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Venus Point was our first stop. This is the place where Captain Cook was to observe the passage of Venus across the Sun in 1769.

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Our tour guide was from France, but he had been many years in Tahiti and did a very good job.

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Venus Point

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A description of the event.

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Monument to the crew of the Bounty

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Message tree. The guide struck the tree with a stone to demonstrate the noise it makes.

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It was traditionally used as a drum.

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Looking North North West from Venus Point to Moorea.

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Looking inland, but unfortunately the mountains were schrouded in clouds.

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Map of the main island of Tahiti. The small part of the island is to the lower right.

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Looking inland from the bus as we drove clockwise arouind the island.

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It reminded us very much of parts of Papua New Guinea.

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Boarding the bus after visiting a restaurant and museum to Gauguin

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Here we have just arrived at a very interesting botanical garden.

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Our guide told us a lot about the various plants.

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The Pagoda Flower

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Wild Ginger

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This is known as the walking tree.

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Demonstrating the characteristics of the Pandanas palm.

The Polynesians even used the leaves to make sails for their sailing canoes. It is amazinly tough but flexible.

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Another intriguing flower.

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Blue fern.

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Alpinia Purpurata (double)

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This one was endemic to Tahiti

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A good example of a bread fruit tree,

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with a young shoot

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and the fruit.

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This was really exotic, like a Tiger's Claw

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Sunday at the beach

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and the locals are enjoying the surf.

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Back at the Regatta

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where a bottle of Champagne was welcoming us to the the next leg of our voyage.

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We brought the frangipani flowers ourselves.

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The local station

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and the train!

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We went for a walk along the harbour and had a look around the town of Papeete.

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This box fish was swimming in the harbour

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and this catamaran was a long way from home.

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The harbour side park

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and some more Polynesian canoes.

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An interesting mural.

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The local Catholic church.

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A madonna with Polynesian features.

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