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Our 25 guests can relax in comfort and style on the 3 French Polynesia Master decks as she cruises the Tuamotu Archipelago. She has 13 modern twin/double en-suite cabins, with comfortable beds, each with ample personal storage space and individually controlled a/c units.
Guests can relax in our indoor saloon or outdoor shaded relaxation area, or take advantage of the sundeck and our 2 jacuzzi’s! Dinner is served buffet style in our upper outdoor deck.
The dive deck provides individual set up stations and additional storage for each individual’s personal items. As well, there is a camera table with a large entry to the rear and 2 deck heads.
Our experienced crew is waiting to welcome you aboard to show you the wonderful diving and snorkeling that French Polynesia has to offer with our 3 large tenders.
The newly built for 2016 French Polynesia Master offers superb diving year-round to the incredible dive sites of French Polynesia. With pristine white beaches and clear, warm water, French Polynesia is a divers paradise. Largely untouched, diving in French Polynesia means seeing hundreds of sharks including grey reefs, hammerheads, tigers, black tips and silky sharks, usually joined by manta rays and dolphins. Stunning colourful reefs, wrecks and channels are part of the normal dive day around this cluster of tiny islands located in the heard of the Pacific Ocean.
The dive deck is located at the rear of the of the upper deck and has a dedicated outdoor seating area and on deck shower hoses. All guests will be allocated an individual set-up station which includes under bench storage for personal gear such as masks & fins. There is also a camera table and separate rinse bucket for dedicated photographers.
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Located on the lower deck, each cabin has an en-suite bathroom but no windows. Cabins can be adapted to either double or twin bed . Cabins have private safe, hair dryer, towels, bathrobes and toiletries.
Located on the upper deck, each cabin has en-suite bathroom with centrally heated hot water. Cabins can be adapted to either double or twin bed configuration. Cabins have private safe, hair dryer, towels, bathrobes and toiletries.
Located on the upper deck, each cabin has en-suite bathroom with centrally heated hot water. Cabins have private safe, hair dryer, towels, bathrobes and toiletries.
Route Description - Tuamotu Archipelago 11 Days / 10 Nights (Rangiroa - Fakarava)
11 Days / 10 Nights (Approximately 28 dives in total)
The diving day aboard the French Polynesia Master has a typical schedule as follows:
Light Breakfast followed by a briefing & Dive 1
Full Breakfast, relaxation period, briefing & Dive 2
Lunch, relaxation period, briefing & Dive 3
Snack, relaxation period, briefing & Dive 4 (where possible)
The following is a description of the dive sites we may visit during your liveaboard safari as The M/V French Polynesia Master cruises between Rangiroa and Fakarava. We have included the highlights; however the yacht may also stop at numerous smaller islands along the way including Arutua, Kankura and Niau. On a typical 7 - night itinerary we will offer between 18 - 20 dives.
Rangiroa Island - Tiputa Pass: Dropping in at the outer edge divers can hook in to the reef wall and watch the amazing shark display. Hammerheads, tiger shark and huge schools of grey reef shark are the main draw. Drift on the incoming tide through The Canyons, where schools of big eyes hang out and mantas can be seen hanging in the cross current. End the dive at Shark Cave where white tips typically come to rest. Other common fish species are grouper and Napoleon wrasse.
Tiputa Reef - On the ocean side of the pass the reef plateaus out at 20m into a magnificent coral garden. Schools of barracuda, turtles, white tip sharks, small wrasse and many colourful reef fish species can be seen. Mantas put in an occasional appearance, bottle nose dolphins too.
Deep Blue - Or simply “The Blue” is the deep water on the ocean side of Tiputa Pass. Here we drop divers directly from the boat to descend to 20m and hang in the blue as the sharks are tempted up to the shallower depths by dropping stones. Expect to see grey reef, silky and silver tip sharks as well as bottlenose dolphins.
Nuhi Nuhi – A shallow coral garden where angel fish, butterfly fish, anthias and all manner of small creatures can be spotted. Look out for leaf fish.
Mypristis – The coral reef acts as a nursery for grey reef sharks in season. Typically divers can see large numbers of marbled grouper and many anemones with resident clown fish.
Avaturo Pass - Strong currents are to be expected but bring forth a wide range of pelagic species from reef sharks to tuna and the occasional sailfish.
Apataki Island: Tehere Pass – The strong currents through the pass mean divers can literally hang like a flag in the breeze! Reef hooks are essential if you want to stay and enjoy the hundreds of grey reef sharks hunting on fusiliers. Tuna, dolphins and swordfish can also be seen. The seabed and wall is more rubble than coral reef so simply drift in the current and enjoy the large pelagics.
Pakaka Pass - A more gentle drift than the Tehere Pass brings you through a pristine coral garden with table and staghorn corals. Silver tip and black tip reef sharks are seen darting in about the shallow corals, whilst numerous eagle rays are frequently sighted.
Toau Island: Otugi Pass – The 400m wide channel is best dived on an incoming tide for the schools of grey reef sharks and silvertips.
Teahuroa – The outer reef wall is where huge schools of snapper congregate. Reef sharks, Napoleon wrasse, barracuda, surgeon fish and big eyes join them, whilst manta ray sightings are possible too.
Fakarava North: Garaue Pass – The northernmost channel of Fakarava Island and arguable the best site in the region for consistent shark sightings. The pass itself is 1600m wide and should only be dived at slack water due to the very strong currents. Starting at the outer wall we encounter the huge “wall of sharks” where hundreds of greys congregate. Black tip, white tip, hammerhead, tiger, silky and oceanic white tip are amongst the other species seen. Napoleon wrasse, surgeon fish and the typical schools of big eyes and yellow snapper swarm over the reefs, joined by turtles, morays and lionfish. In June and July, large numbers of grouper aggregate to spawn, a truly spectacular sight. Manta rays also visit.
Maiuru - A submerged plateau on the outer edge of the pass, levels out at 18m into a lovely hard coral garden. At the ‘drop off’ you can encounter shark activity, whilst over the reef paddletail snapper and barracuda form large schools. Manta rays and eagle rays come by for cleaning and a quick meal and there are plenty of smaller creatures including nudibranchs and crabs to spot amongst the corals and sponges. v
Ohutu – The second plateau starts at 12m and drops to 30m with vibrant corals this is a superb place to watch manta rays.
Restaurant Pier – This shallow site is perfect for an afternoon dive where schools of snapper, black tip reef sharks and Napoleon wrasse are common with a stunning atmosphere for photography.
Water temperature ranges from 24-28°C (75-82°F) with June-October being the coldest months. For most guests a 3mm long wetsuit will be sufficient, however those who feel the cold easily may wish to bring thicker exposure protection.
Diving Rangiroa’s reefs and channels you can expect to see grey reef hammerhead, black tips, silky, tiger and silver tip shark species cruising the reef, hunting on schools of snapper and fusiliers. Whilst drift diving through the 1200m wide channel at North Fakarava Island, you can experience incredible shark action, see huge Napoleon wrasse and witness marbled groupers spawning. A typical diving day will see you cruising through channels and exploring the outer reefs of the atolls, yet there are numerous of shallow dive sites within the Tuamotu Archipelago, each with stunning hard corals, sheltering all manner of crustaceans and molluscs.