Raiatea was the third port of call on our Inspiration Cruise in French Polynesia.
The boat actually pulled into the harbor in the late evening after spending all day on Ta'haa, and we spent a very fun night with the entire boat eating dinner under the stars and listening to an incredible concert by Steve Green. (Have you heard of him? He's a Christian singer. We got to know him and his wife Marijean and they were literally some of the nicest people i've ever met!)
During one point in the concert, Chuck Swindoll and two others joined Steve and the four of them sang in a quartet on board. It was hilarious and so so much fun. That dinner was one of the aspects which made the choice of going with Inspiration Cruises & Tours so enjoyable. They had so many fun surprises planned for us that were not only lively entertainment, but true faith building experiences. Steve's songs were so encouraging:)
The next day Kevin and I went on a bike ride with Steve and Marijean. The boat let us rent bikes, and we biked through a pretty large section of the island. It was absolutely gorgeous...so lush and green. At one point we all stopped at a little mini-mart and bought some cold drinks. As we sat there and chatted, I had one of those out of body experiences where I thought "this is so unbelievable. Here I am with this amazing Christian singer and his wife, drinking sodas and sparkling water in the most random location ever." I really got a kick out of it, haha!!
After biking, we headed back to the boat for lunch. Once fed, we explored the tiny port. There were all sorts of interesting arts and craft stalls, some cute coffee shops, and a quaint little harbor with lots of yachts parked. It was so relaxing just sitting at the coffee shops and taking in the ambiance.
In the afternoon, Inspiration had quite the treat for us! They planned an event with a local singing group from Raiatea called "the mommas and the papas" to come onboard and sing some traditional Tahitian songs. They danced, taught us how to make flower bracelets, and then called us all up to learn their local dances. It was hilarious. I must say, Kevin really got down with the music. Everyone was cracking up at his antics!! This was a total highlight of the day, as we also got some time to just spend with the ladies and chat with them. Learning about the local culture was quite fascinating!
Raiatea was a blast, and i'm sure glad we got the chance to explore it!! If you've missed our other islands posts, you can see them here:
ps-my flowered dress is from here