so many islands, so many questions

I like to indulge in a little Tahitian research while on my breaks at work. While browsing the interwebs today (by using GoodSearch for Theatre of NOTE!) I’m feeling overwhelmed by many things. First, the abundance of islands, atolls, lagoons, and archipelagos (what even IS an archipelago?) that make up French Polynesia. Look at the first sentence of the Wikipedia entry for Tahiti and you’ll quickly understand my fluster.

“Tahiti is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia, located in the archipelago of Society Islands in the southern Pacific Ocean.”

That’s a whole mess of groups and sub-groups. I clearly have a lot of research to do in order to get a handle on this whole Tahiti thing. See my problem is this; I’m the type of person who has to weigh every single option before I make a decision. It’s a curse. I cannot pick an ice cream flavor until I’ve carefully considered every single flavor available in the store. If I ever get married, I will be the god-awful bride that has to try on a thousand dresses before she can make a purchase. I’m just always worried that the next option I see will be better than the last. I mean how do you know it won’t be? How do you know??! I’ve never been good at that whole leap of faith thing. I realize how neurotic this is and I do actively try to engage my gut instinct and follow it blindly. That tactic has been successful at times, but I often revert back to my indecisive self. Which is why I now feel like I’m going to have to do extensive research on over 130 tropical islands before I can make travel plans.

130 islands! Yes, we’re going to running to Tahiti as our primary stop, but we want to venture to at least one other island. Out of 130, holy atoll batman, how do we decide???

More on the islands later, but if you are one of the lucky people in the world who has actually been to French Polynesia, can you help a beleaguered traveler out and send me some personal recommendations? These are the major questions on the table:

  1. Which islands are best for diving/snorkeling?
  2. How much time does one REALLY need in French Polynesia? In my dreams I’m hoping for a 2-week vacation but we’d have to bump the savings up to $2 per mile to make that happen. Will we be satisfied with 1 week?
  3. Should we stay on an overwater bungalow or are they really bad for the local flora and fauna?
  4. Which island should we visit besides Tahiti?
  5. How much spending money do we need daily?
  6. Should we use a travel agent? Even asking that question is antiquated in this day and age, but I’m seriously overwhelmed and might just need someone to hold my hand when I press the Purchase Tickets button
  7. Which island is the least populated, yet still accessible to clueless American tourists?
  8. Where can I find a zip-line in French Polynesia. I want to zip-line!

Whew! So many questions, but that is a good start. I’m glad I’ve got two years to plan this vacation. Yes yes, I know there are plenty of websites and travel books out there that I could read, and I will, but honestly there is nothing in the world like a personal referral. So if you have any advice, please do send it my way by leaving a comment on this post. I would love to hear your juicy Tahiti stories!

In lighter news, this is where we’re going. So purdy. Now if only I knew exactly which island this was:

Tahiti hut

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2 thoughts on “so many islands, so many questions

  1. Now I know why you were asking me why you can’t make up your mind:) I have a feeling that the coast line would take a life time to explore. We’ll have to go every two years. You need to get certified! I heard that the sharks are friendly in Tahiti.

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