Encircling barrier reefs provide a habitat for sea turtles, sharks, dolphins, porpoises, colorful hard and soft coral, and more than 500 species of fish, making the Tahitian Leewards one of the world’s top snorkeling and scuba diving venues. Resorts, watersports, island tours, archaeological sites, and fine dining are just some of the delights of a Tahiti yacht charter.
Situated midway in the Pacific Ocean between South America and Australia, French Polynesia is comprised of 118 islands in the Austral, Gambier, Marquesas, Tuamotu, and Society archipelagos spread out in an area roughly the size of Europe. Papeete on Tahiti is the capital. Within the Society group are Bora-Bora, Raiatea, Tahaa, and Huahine, the jewels of the exotic cruising grounds of a Tahiti sailing vacation. Because the islands are downwind from Tahiti they’re known as the Leewards.
The Kingdom of Tonga is situated midway in the Pacific Ocean between Tahiti and Fiji, comprising 171 islands in four distinct groups: Tongatapu, Ha′apai, Vava′u, and Niuas. Nuku′alofa on the main island of Tongatapu is the capital of this constitutional monarchy.
The jewels of the exotic cruising grounds of a Tonga sailing vacation are the hilly and wooded coral islands of Vava′u. Miles of white-sand beaches, coral reefs, and crystal clear waters make Tonga one of the world’s top snorkeling and scuba diving venues. Visibility is often 150 feet.
The abundance of snug anchorages, more than 40 of them, combined with the close proximity of the islands to one another is very similar to cruising in the British Virgin Islands. The reefs assure calm waters while the trade winds assure excellent sailing virtually every day. It’s no surprise, then, that Vava′u is a sailor’s paradise, where the delights of a Tonga sailing trip inspire fond memories that last a lifetime.