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Marquesas Islands Cruise aboard Aranui 5

Private Travel | Cruises | Non-exclusive 17 Days & 14 Nights Lead-in price: £6695 Current prices from: £6695

Following in the footsteps of Paul
Gauguin, Robert Louis Stevenson and
Thor Heyerdahl, a voyage aboard the
Aranui 5 offers a unique opportunity
to explore the enchanting Marquesas
Islands, set in the distant reaches of
French Polynesia and the most remote
set of islands in the world. Setting
sail from Tahiti on a 4,000-kilometre
journey, the Aranui 5 visits all six of the
inhabited islands of the Marquesas, as
well as Fakarava and Rangiroa in the
Tuamotu Islands and Bora Bora in the
Society Islands.

The Cox & Kings signature experiences

  • Sail through the South Pacific on an once-in-a-lifetime adventure
  • Visit French Polynesia's outer islands where few tourists venture
  • Discover local culture and traditions such as the Marquesan bird dance and pig dance
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Standard Private Tour in brief

Day 1: Fly to Papeete

Overnight flight from London to Papeete. (N)

Day 2: Fly to Papeete, Tahiti

On arrival, transfer to the Hotel Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort – Managed by Sofitel. (N)

Day 3: Papeete

Board the Aranui 5 this morning in the capital of Tahiti and begin your 12-night cruise. (L, D)

Day 4: Fakarava (Tuamotu Archipelago)

Arrive this morning into Fakarava, a Unescolisted biosphere reserve and the second largest atoll in French Polynesia. There will be the opportunity to visit the small village of Rotoava, where a church has been built out of coral. Afterwards, enjoy a refreshing swim and snorkel in the translucent lagoon among tropical fish before setting sail this afternoon. (B, L, D)

Day 5: At sea

Today, relax on board your vessel and enjoy the views of the endless South Pacific Ocean on your way to the captivating Marquesas Islands. Lectures on Marquesan culture and history will provide an insight into this ancient civilization. (B, L, D)

Day 6: Nuku Hiva (Marquesas Archipelago)

Stop at Nuku Hiva, the largest of the Marquesas Islands and the home of their administrative capital. As the Aranui 5 unloads its goods to the locals, enjoy a full-day tour. Visit the Cathedral of Taiohae, the petroglyphs at the archaeological site of Mea’e Kamuihei and take a hike that finishes with a traditional Marquesan pig dance performance. After a Marquesan lunch, continue south to Taiohae with its spectacular bay – a giant volcanic amphitheatre dominated by towering cliffs streaked with waterfalls. (B, L, D)

Day 7: Ua Pou

Watch the soaring mountain spires as you arrive into Ua Pou. Explore the quaint village of Hakahau and meet the island’s talented artisans or take a hike to gain views over the mountains, village and valleys. At lunch, sample local delights such as curried goat, sweet red bananas and poisson cru, a dish made from raw fish marinated in lime juice and coconut milk. Before departing there will be a dance performance including the bird dance, a routine traditional to the island. (B, L, D)

Day 8: Hiva Oa

The Aranui 5 will arrive at Hiva Oa this morning, where there will be time to explore Atuona, the second largest village in the Marquesas. This is where Paul Gauguin lived and created some of his best work. Return to the ship for lunch while sailing to Koku’u beach, where visitors can swim and snorkel. (B, L, D)

Day 9: Hiva Oa • Tahuata

On arrival into Puamau on Hiva Oa, travel by 4×4 to one of the most impressive archaeological sites for ‘tikis’ outside of Easter Island. Only a small part of the site has been restored. While here, learn the stories of these haunting statues. After lunch on board, enjoy the afternoon in the small village of Vaitahu as the ship anchors off the island of Tahuata. Tahuata is where the French first settled in the Marquesas in 1842. The island is famous for its exquisite bone and helmet shell carvings. (B, L, D)

Day 10: Fatu Hiva

Today’s stop will be at Fatu Hiva, the most lush and remote island of the Marquesas which can only be accessed by sea. Learn about tapa (traditional cloth) in the tranquil village of Omoa and meet skilled woodcarvers. Before lunch, sail to the other side of the island to the scenic Hanavave Bay, where adventurous guests can take a 16-kilometre hike for breathtaking views of towering cliffs and waterfalls. Witness the stunning sunset in Hanavave Bay and then enjoy a Polynesian evening under the stars with a buffet dinner served out on deck. (B, L, D)

Day 11: Ua Huka

Arrive early this morning into Ua Huka for a full-day tour of the island. View exquisite replicas of Marquesan art at the small museum of Vaipaee and explore the island by 4×4. Lunch will be served at a local family restaurant. Continue discovering the island by visiting the fishing village of Hokatu, or hike up to one of Hane’s viewpoints. (B, L, D)

Day 12: Day at sea

Today will be spent on board. (B, L, D)

Day 13: Rangiroa (Tuamotu Archipelago)

You may see dolphins playing in the water as you approach the world’s second largest atoll, Rangiroa. The Tuamotu atolls, with their pristine environment and pure waters, offer ideal conditions for pearl farming. Today will provide an opportunity to visit a working pearl farm and learn how Tahiti’s famed jewel of the sea is produced. (B, L, D)

Day 14: Bora Bora (Society Islands)

The final stop for the cruise will be Bora Bora, famous for its idyllic turquoise lagoon. Today you can enjoy a day at the beach in this island paradise or pay to join an optional excursion such as a circle island tour by boat, a helicopter flight, or feed reef sharks and rays. This evening, depart for Papeete. (B, L, D)

Day 15: Papeete

Disembark the Aranui 5 in Papeete this morning. You will be transferred to the Hotel Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort – Managed by Sofitel for an overnight stay. (B)

Days 16-17: Fly home

Transfer to the airport this evening and fly home. (N)

Meal basis

As per itinerary – B: Breakfast, L: Lunch, D: Dinner, N: No meals.

Important Information Non-exclusive cruise:

The transfers and excursions relevant to the cruise are operated as a group with other passengers, who may or may not be Cox & Kings clients.

Booking conditions:

Cox & Kings is acting as an agent on behalf of Aranui 5 and its cancellation conditions apply.

Standard tour

This tour is based in 3- and 4-star accommodation.

Tailor-made travel

For a price quote based on alternative accommodation standards, to discuss flight options or to tailor this itinerary, please call to speak with a Cox & Kings consultant or enquire online.

Standard private tour accommodation

  • Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort managed by Sofitel
    Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort managed by Sofitel

    Hotel Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort managed by Sofitel is located on the east coast of Tahiti, approximately 10km from the airport and 16km from the capital, Papeete. The property is set within tropical grounds next to a sandy beach and has a large lagoon swimming pool with a sandy floor. Each of the rooms, suites and overwater bungalows features a blend of contemporary and Tahitian decor and a terrace or decking area. Indulge in a refined meal and quality wine at the restaurant accompanied by the calming sound of gentle waves and tropical birds. Features: 149 rooms, spa, outdoor pool, 2 restaurants, bar, tennis court. Room amenities: Television, air conditioning, minibar, hairdryer, bathrobes.

  • Aranui 5 Discover the Marquesas 12 Nights/ 13 Days
    Aranui 5 Discover the Marquesas 12 Nights/ 13 Days

    The Aranui 5 is a hybrid cruise-freighter ship, supplying the tiny communities of the islands with essential food, medication and other materials, while also taking passengers to reach otherwise inaccessible locations. To this day, the isolation of the Marquesas islands mean they remain largely unexplored, with their interiors covered by dense jungle, steep volcanic outcrops and deep plunging valleys. During the voyage there are opportunities to explore the dramatic and spectacular scenery of the islands, discover the resurgent local culture, including traditional musical and dance performances, visit important tikis (human-like religious sculptures), snorkel in translucent lagoons alive with tropical fish and watch the crew go about their extraordinary work delivering provisions to these remote communities. In the evenings, enjoy a drink at the Sky Bar or on deck, watching the sun set over the South Pacific Ocean. Excursions, lectures, selected beverages and meals are included. The ship can carry up to 254 ...

Standard private tour extensions

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Dates & prices


Guideline Prices

Low season from £6695 per person

High season from £6695 per person


Flexible Prices & Itineraries
For a quote based on alternative accommodation standards or flight options, or to tailor this itinerary, please call 020 7873 5000 or send an email enquiry

Additional Information

Please call 020 7873 5000 for more information or to make a booking.

Prices above are per person in pounds sterling (£), based on two people sharing a twin-room. The prices which were valid at the time of publication, may be subject to change, particularly as a result of variable flight costs. You will be informed of any such changes prior to booking.

  • • International flights
    • Transfers in an air-conditioned vehicle
    • 2 nights’ luxury hotel accommodationin Papeete
    • 12 nights on board the Aranui 5 cruise ship
    • All meals while aboard the cruise
    • Presentations by onboard experts &guest hosts

Destinations on this tour

  • Papeete

    Papeete is the capital and commercial hub of French Polynesia, located on...

    Read more >
  • Papeete

    Papeete is the capital and commercial hub of French Polynesia, located on...

    Read more >
  • Papeete

    Papeete is the capital and commercial hub of French Polynesia, located on...

    Read more >
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