Day 76 of Traveling the World, Papeete, Tahiti Nui, French Polynesia. April 17, 2018.

Such a busy, large city! Papeete is probably the second-largest city in the Pacific after Honolulu. It is full of activity, with cars going every which way, and shops line the esplanade opposite the port. The primary language is French….we went to a cafe and ordered a quiche, and the young server said it was ham with…..epinard. He struggled, telling us it was a stringy green vegetable. I said….spinach? ….and he smiled and confirmed that it was spinach. We ordered it, and it was absolutely fantastic. Since we only eat a low-carb diet, we left the crust and ate the filling, which was great.

The Pomare dynasty on the island of Tahiti, which formed at the end of the 18th century, lasted about 100 years, before Europeans began to settle the region. In 1820, the Pomare dynasty’s last queen officially declared Papeete the capital city of the dynasty. The city didn’t gain popularity until the French artist Paul Gauguin relocated here to focus on paintings of Tahitian life.

The last time we were here, in early 2015, we drove around the main island, Tahiti Nui, and then drove on the little peninsula called Tahiti Iti. Outside the city, it resembles Bora Bora. Today’s photos are of the downtown, the port, and some local musicians greeting and welcoming us to Tahiti. The fifth photo is an overview of Papeete, taken from the 15th deck of our ship. The last photo is the walkway along the ocean, which is dotted with real Tahitian huts to escape the sun for a while.