5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Tahiti
PHOTO: Did you know? Tahiti went relatively undiscovered for centuries. (Courtesy Paul Gauguin Cruises)
There are a few things that probably immediately pop into your mind when you think about Tahiti.
Of course, the beaches and the sizzling tropical locale are likely among the first things you envision.
And indeed, those are some of the most popular features of this in-demand destination. But there is so much more to Tahiti than that. Here are a few things you might be surprised to discover about Tahiti – but that Paul Gauguin Cruises, your expert when it comes to French Polynesia, certainly already knows.
It boasts a completely one-of-a-kind vineyard. You wouldn’t expect to find a thriving vineyard amidst the coral of the Pacific Ocean. That’s what makes Vin de Tahiti so unique. It is the only vineyard of its kind in the world. The exotic environment infuses the wine-making grapes with their own distinctive flavor. The vineyard offers a selection of white wines and rose varieties.
This is where overwater bungalows got their start. While it seems they are now a staple of every beachfront tropical tourist destination, overwater bungalows weren’t always so common. The origins of the first overwater bungalows trace back to Tahiti in the 1960s.
It isn’t just a single island. What is perhaps most surprising to people who aren’t all that familiar with the layout of Tahiti is that it isn’t just one island. While there is an island bearing that name (which can make things confusing), Tahiti is actually a country that includes 118 islands spread over five great archipelagos. Its total area covers over two million square miles of the South Pacific Ocean. The islands are tiny, though—their total land mass together adds up to an area slightly larger than the state of Rhode Island. With so many islands from which to choose, you have quite a selection. You can head for the popular tourist destinations, or be more of an explorer and head to some of the more remote locales for peace and privacy.
It remained undiscovered for a surprisingly long time. For many centuries, Tahiti seemed to enjoy life as an undiscovered hidden jewel of the Pacific. It seemed to go unnoticed by explorers until a relatively recent era of history—much later than most of the other nearby regions. While explorers circled the region starting around 200 B.C., the first official visit to the island of Tahiti by European explorers is said to have occurred in the 1700s.
They started the food truck phenomenon. Food trucks seem to be everywhere these days, but that wasn’t always the case. While it’s probably impossible to say exactly where the first official food truck originated, Tahiti is often credited with being the inspiration with their roulottes (the French word for “caravans”). These food trucks set up every night in certain parts of Tahiti, and it is a fast and convenient way to get a taste of authentic local cuisine.
One of the best ways to tour the Tahitian islands is from the water. Paul Gauguin Cruises offers a wide variety of excursions to Tahiti and French Polynesia. You can browse the selection of itineraries and pick the one that represents your dream vacation.
More by Bobbi Dempsey
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