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Papeete is located on the island of Tahiti in French Polynesia, the only urban area of any significant size in the region. It is no tourist-oriented town but a down-to-earth place with plenty of options for enjoying the simple pleasures in life: eating, drinking and people-watching. The small area makes it easy to walk around, and the waterfront is a busy promenade which comes to life at night with a range of culinary delights from food trucks.
From the amazing black pearls on sale everywhere to the incredible seafood and ubiquitous water views, the ocean and its fruits are an intrinsic part of life in the Pacific city. Departing on a cruise out of Papeete is a great way to get amongst the seagoing tradition of this busy port and bid farewell to urbanity for the natural delights of French Polynesia.
Papeete cruise lines and destinations
There are a range of cruise companies offering cruises out of Papeete, from big-ship to small-ship and mainstream to luxury, offering a spectrum of different cruise experiences. International line Princess Cruises offers departures from the city, and on the luxury end of the spectrum is Tahiti-based Paul Gauguin with their all-inclusive cruises, specialised boutique ship and top-notch service. Falling somewhere in the middle of the two is Oceania Cruises, a premium line also offering cruises from Papeete. Other major cruise lines which pass by the beautiful Tahitian isles include P&O Cruises, Celebrity cruises, Carnival and cruises with Royal Caribbean.
Many of the cruises leaving Papeete stay nearby and visit the islands of Tahiti and French Polynesia. When there are so many idyllic spots right there in your backyard, why leave? Some of the most common destinations include Bora Bora, Moorea, Raiatea and Nuku Hiva. Papeete also makes a handy halfway point for transpacific journeys, and you can sometimes find cruises from there heading southwest to Australia or northeast to the United States.
Papeete cruise port
Ships cruising to and from Papeete dock at a convenient quay downtown, close to the waterfront promenade, the municipal market and a tourism office where cruisers can find out all they need to know about the city.
From the dock, all of Papeete's attractions are within walking distance, and the airport is a short taxi ride at fixed-fare rates with surcharges for additional luggage.