Last updated: 04:00 PM ET, Mon May 30 2016

Take a South Pacific Cruise and Get a Tattoo Onboard Aranui 5

Cruise Line & Cruise Ship | Jason Leppert | May 30, 2016

Take a South Pacific Cruise and Get a Tattoo Onboard Aranui 5

Photo courtesy of Aranui 5

Already the Aranui 5 offers a unique cruising experience as a hybrid cruise/cargo ship deep in the South Pacific, and now the vessel can take travelers even deeper, so to speak, by getting a traditional Polynesian tattoo during a shore excursion.

"The best vacations leave lasting impressions, but some of our passengers go a step further and opt to imprint a symbol of their experience directly on their skin," said Jules Wong, marketing director for Aranui. "We aim for full cultural immersion and this is one of the many ways travelers can take a piece of the Marquesas home with them."

READ MORE: New Aranui 5 Ready to Cruise

A limited quantity of the ship’s 254 guests will have the chance to be permanently marked by a native artist where tattooing is believed to have originated. One of the crew members, primarily from the Marquesas and Tahitian Islands, named Mahalo (pictured above) may even take inspiration from his own ink.

In Polynesian culture, tattoos represent everything from significant life events to religious importance. Once applied, the onboard physician can be on hand to treat the healing of the tattoo.

Of course, for those less interested in such extreme endeavors, other shore excursions include hikes, sacred ritual site and pearl farm visits, art appreciation, snorkeling, picnicking and even stopping at Paul Gauguin's grave.

READ MORE: The Aranui Experience Turns 30

Fourteen-day itineraries leave from Papeete, Tahiti for Takapoto and Rangiroa in the Tuamotu Archipelago and Bora Bora in the Society Islands, as well as Nuku Hiva, Ua Pou, Hiva Oa, Fatu Hiva, Tahuata and Ua Huka in the Marquesas Islands.

The fully air-conditioned Aranui 5 passenger freighter features 103 cabins, a reception area, casual restaurant, four bars, two conference rooms, two lounges, a library, video and computer room, boutique, outdoor swimming pool, fitness room, full-service spa and two elevators. Plus, the crew extends to expert lecturers and guides.

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