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Nuku Hiva, Marquesas Islands

Posted by on Oct 10, 2011 in Exotic Locations | Comments Off on Nuku Hiva, Marquesas Islands

The Marquesas Islands are a group of volcanic islands in French Polynesia, an overseas collectivity of France in the southern Pacific Ocean. The Marquesas Islands form one of the five administrative divisions of French Polynesia. The capital of the Marquesas Islands administrative subdivision is the settlement of Taiohae on the island of Nuku Hiva.

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The bulk of the Marquesas Islands are of volcanic origin created by the Marquesas hotspot underlying the Pacific Plate.

The Marquesas Islands comprise an isolated group of 12 volcanic islands, of which 2 are small rock islands and only 6 are inhabited.

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Formed from two volcanoes, Nuku Hiva is the largest of the Marquesas Islands, offering tourists magnificent landscapes, intriguing archeology, quality wooden handicrafts and a plethora of activities to enjoy and experience, such as hiking, horseback riding and diving.


Nuku Hiva is a magical island with an abundance of natural wonders, like 1000-foot waterfalls, towering mountains, and rich flora and fauna.

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The town of Taiohae is the administrative capital of the Marquesas Islands, situated at the foot of the deep Taiohae Bay.

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Inspired and captivated by the idyllic tropical scenery, lush green vegetation overflowing with orchids, spider lilies and ginger jasmines, vibrant culture and warm welcoming hospitality of the locals, Marquesas Islands offer many land and water activities to make your holidays unforgettable.

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You can choose from a wide selection of adventures including land excursions, picnics on the beach or mountains, safari truck, hiking over mountain trails and to inland cascades, motorboat rides, deep-sea fishing and other water sports.

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There are four airports in the Marquesas, one each on the islands of Nuku Hiva, Ua Pu, Ua Huka, and Hiva Oa. The terrain of Tahuata is too irregular to allow for the construction of a landing strip without significant investment, and while the upland plateau of central Fatu Hiva is large enough to permit the construction of an airstrip, the island’s minuscule population makes such an exercise of dubious benefit.

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The primary accommodations in Marquesas Islands are mainly found in the islands of Nuku Hiva and Hiva Oa, treating guests to unparallel comfort and warm traditional hospitality. Hiva Oa Hanakee Pearl Lodge is a wonderful getaway with contemporary comforts and breathtaking views of the rugged coast.

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Facing the fantastic mount Temetiu (3,903 feet), the hotel boasts 20 bungalows, each with a private terrace and other room amenities. You can find an elegantly designed swimming pool with plenty of nearby activities. Baby sitting is available upon request.

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In contrast to the common perception of lush tropical vegetation that goes culturally hand-in-hand with the appellation “Polynesia”, the Marquesas are remarkably dry islands.

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Although the islands lie within the tropics, they are the first major break in the prevailing easterly winds spawned from the extraordinarily dry Humboldt Current. Because of this, the islands are subject to frequent drought conditions, and only those which reach highest into the clouds have reliable precipitation.

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Apart from hiking and sight-seeing, there are more activities you can do in this island. There are festivals which are held for various occasions and as this is an island surrounded by the ocean, there are water-related activities to experience and enjoy.

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Some of the resorts offer services and facilities for snorkeling and diving. Shopping and dining are also common points of interest as the locals offer an array of specialties for their visitors.

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