Marquesas – First We Had to Cross the Pond

Crossing the Pacific is often called Crossing the Pond. It took us 26 days to sail from Puerto Vallarta, Mexico to Hiva Oa, Marquesas. A 2,700 nautical mile passage.

IMG_2388

In that passage we broke and fixed our monitor-wind-vane, tore our jib, a slide on our mainsail split in half, and our auto pilot quit working.  We also encountered a few squalls and had a brown-footed boobie (its a bird) harass us for a few days.  In the mornings we’d wake up to a few dried flying fish on deck and beautiful sunrises.  Most evenings were clear, so we have a canopy of stars to guide us in the night.

Passages can be a challenge as well as rewarding, but the best part of a passage is  the destination.  This time is was the Marquesas.

Hiva Oa

The Marquesas is fragrant.  The scent of flowers and burning coconut husks waft out to the boat like a light floral incense.  Fruits is abundant here.  Pamplemousse (large sweet grapefruit) limes, papayas, bananas, mangoes grow in many family yards.  Chickens run loose and goats are tied up in the back.

IMG_2421

Like with many of the Polynesian cultures, the Marquesans take pride in their culture preserving the old ways while incorporating the new.

Traditional Polynesian Boat

Traditional Polynesian Boat

Multi-hull with sail and paddlers

Multi-hull with sail and paddlers

Flowers are a part of celebration

Flowers are a part of celebration

Christianity is strong

Christianity is strong

Remembering loved ones

Remembering loved ones

 

Fatu Hiva

This used to be called Bay of Penises by the locals.  When the missionaries found out, they banned the name.  Can you blame the locals for their descriptive name?

IMG_2547

This island is remote and only accessible by boat.  Locals are willing to trade their carving and fruits for quality items.  We traded two life preservers for turtle, dolphin and stingray carved in cherry wood.

There is a half-hour hike to a waterfall where you can cool off with a fresh water swim.

Walk through the village

Walk through the village

A cool dip under the water fall

A cool dip under the water fall

 

Ua Poa

One of my favorite islands in the Marquesas.  Excellent bakery with chocolate stuff croissants and 40 cent baguettes.  But you have to arrive before 5 AM because their all sold out by 6.

IMG_2657

The bay is beautiful.  The village quiet and quaint.

Local fisherman

Local fisherman

 

Kids playing in our dinghy

Kids playing in our dinghy

Local church

Local church

A quaint town

A small  town

 

 

Nuka Hiva

The main island of the Marquesas.  A larger population and more stores to choose from to provision for the next stretch of ocean to cross to see the Tuamotus.

IMG_2720

IMG_2716

IMG_2706

During out time in the Marquesas, we rode our bikes on each island we visited, swam, sweated and read.  Did our laundry by hand and fixed things we broke.  We had gorgeous views of the towering spires on many of the islands, touched old rock carvings and hiked in the tropical bush.

IMG_2584

Discovered that computers and the internet aren’t a big deal, in fact its a place that steps back in time and teaches us to enjoy the moment.

Kelly Girl

The Books