12 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2019
We chose this cruise specifically due to the smaller number of passengers. We like a less crowded experience. We really loved the locals who entertained us and helped with local crafts. What a way to learn! If was fantastic. We ... Read More
We chose this cruise specifically due to the smaller number of passengers. We like a less crowded experience. We really loved the locals who entertained us and helped with local crafts. What a way to learn! If was fantastic. We haven't cruised in a long time, but found getting aboard and finding information about the excursions we chose very easy. Of course there was no shortage of people to help you! We dined in all of the restaraunt's and they were all superb. Staff were very courteous and never seemed so overwhelmed with passengers that they couldn't provide good service. I loved the ports. I especially liked Huahine but maybe it was our tour guide. We did the 'Sacred Sites' one and our guide was very well educated and also could answer random questions about plants, shells, animals........and what a sense of humour! Of course the picnic on Motu Mahana was so incredibly relaxing.....or busy if you wanted to partake in water actvities. Did I remember to say how beautiful the Motu is!! On our last day at Mooreau we spent at the InterContinental Resort and Spa, my husband enjoyed to rest by the pools and read. A rest after nearly 5 weeks of traveling. It was our 40 wedding anniversary and we had a wonderful sunset cruise of the bay in Bora Bora and a private dinner on the ships marina! It was so romantic, the highlight for sure. The staff did such a good job of keeping this a secret from my husband and he loved the surprise. Thank you for that! Loved the entire experience and would love to do it all again........ Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
I had heard it was luxurious and a once in a lifetime experience. Wrong. The ship is 20 years old and showing every day of it. For the price we paid and the fact that it was an exclusive French ship, I expected the best French food. ... Read More
I had heard it was luxurious and a once in a lifetime experience. Wrong. The ship is 20 years old and showing every day of it. For the price we paid and the fact that it was an exclusive French ship, I expected the best French food. Even perhaps a small French creperie on board. No such luck. The food was average, and not particularly French. I have been on may cruises and most ships have excellent entertainment. Not on this one. There wasn't actually any entertainment to speak of, apart from a Tahitian group who were amateurish at best. The lead singer if you could call her that was often off key. The best thing about this cruise was that the staff were amazing. Highly trained and couldn't help enough. There was also the fact that you could drink as much as you like and didn't get charged for it. There were also a large amount of free in cabin movies. Most of the shore excursions were very expensive, and a bit disappointing except for the Dolphin experience. That was amazing. Being able to get into the water with the Dolphins and get a photo kissing one was worth the trip. Read Less
5 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: September 2018
Everything about this cruise was wonderful, including staff, food, and excursions. We were particularly impressed by the food and restaurant service, with the exception of the on deck restaurant which at night was purportedly a fine ... Read More
Everything about this cruise was wonderful, including staff, food, and excursions. We were particularly impressed by the food and restaurant service, with the exception of the on deck restaurant which at night was purportedly a fine dining restaurant which needed special booking.Unlike the other La Veranda fine dining restaurant, which had amazing food and wonderfully attentive service, Le Grille food was limited in choice and in our view mediocre, and there was little ambiance when we went on 14th September. Our six thirty booking was early, and they must have overbooked for later because our three courses were rushed to the extent that by 7.20 pm 50 minutes later we were being asked if we wanted coffee with our desert! Couple this with a waiter who firstly forget my order for Cointreau without ice with my coffee, and when reminded took another ten minutes to bring a bottle over and asked if I wanted it on the rocks. I confirmed again no, and he went off for a further ten minutes, and then came back with it on ice! When the maitre de asked how things had gone I told him, and he was almost rude in his defence of the rushed meal (we always serve the coffee with the desert) and his defense of the waiter (he's very busy and he has to go all the way to the bar for drinks) What a let down on an otherwise wonderful cruise! So, forget special bookings at Le Grille, and make extra ones at La Veranda, but the main restaurant was also superb both in food choices and great service. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2018
We chose this cruise ship because we were on it 2 years ago, and LOVED it! There are no words to describe the service on this ship. It is absolutely THE BEST service you will ever receive anywhere in the world! EVERYONE, and this goes ... Read More
We chose this cruise ship because we were on it 2 years ago, and LOVED it! There are no words to describe the service on this ship. It is absolutely THE BEST service you will ever receive anywhere in the world! EVERYONE, and this goes for every person that is on that ship, is amazing! I cannot say enough about the waiter staff, or the housekeeping staff! Kudos Paul Gauguin for hiring people that care about their jobs! The outings were good too, most of the time. The only negative I would give is that they have apparently switched their shampoos and lotions to another brand that is really terrible. Last time we were there it was so wonderful, as far as shampoos and conditioners and lotions go, that I didn’t bring any this time hoping to save some weight in my luggage. BIG mistake! So take your own, if you go! Read Less
14 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: January 2018
Visiting the South Pacific has always been a dream of mine. As my wife was approaching her 60th birthday we decided to make this dream a reality and chose Paul Gauguin cruises. First, we are ardent cruisers having done more than 30 to ... Read More
Visiting the South Pacific has always been a dream of mine. As my wife was approaching her 60th birthday we decided to make this dream a reality and chose Paul Gauguin cruises. First, we are ardent cruisers having done more than 30 to date. We are not brand loyal and choose our cruises based upon their itineraries. Prior to Paul Gauguin, our smallest ship had been the Oceania Nautica at 682 passengers. There was quite a bit to like about this cruise: staterooms were much larger than expected given the size of the ship and number of passengers. There was a lot of shelving space available, more than enough for all of our clothing and other assorted goods. Embarkation was a breeeze. We were told in advance that boarding would begin at 3:00 pm. At 2:55 we were given the OK and were in our stateroom within minutes. Our bags were promptly delivered within a half hour. The food and service were the best we've experienced on any of our cruises. Whether in the main dining room or either specialty restaurant, service quality was high and the food was excellent, though I would give La Verandah a slight edge in ambience and menu. I would really like to highlight amazing service offered by Raffy, one of the head waiters. My wife has a gluten allergy which we reported prior to sailing. Raffy was in charge of 36 people with dietary issues. Each night, he would find us and present us with the menu for the next day, whether it be in the main dining room or one of the specialty restaurant. One night, we went to the wrong restaurant and he still tracked us down. Unlike other ships, my wife could order anything on the menu and it would be prepared gluten free. Incredible service!!! On another occasion, I had slipped on an excursion and skinned my knee quite badly. William, one of the deck stewards, we had gotten to know quite well, noticed my injured knee and promptly brought a first aid kit and attended my injury. He cleansed the would with alcohol, sterilized it with iodine and then gave me some bandages to help protect it. Once again, great service above the call of duty. Our cruise director, Artur, was a quirky fellow... in a good way. He had a very impish personality and always seemed to have a glint in his eye. He was also a very good magician and hosted a few sessions with interesting sleight of hand. I also have to give kudos to the crew who supported the tender transfers. At Rarotonga, sea swells had to be at least 8 feet, yet they still managed to get people ashore and back. Four able bodied seamen had the routine down pat to time the swell and help passengers move to/from the ship and tender. I've been on other cruises with much calmer seas where tenders had been cancelled. On the other hand, there were a couple of concerns about this cruise that I would like to express. This ship was designed with a shallow hull to facilitate transit in lagoons. This design element was also a deficiency in the deep seas. This was without question, the rockiest ship I have ever been on. Even in relatively mild seas, this ship yawed and rolled quite a bit. The ship is also showing its age. It could use a refurb to bring it up to current cruise standards. There is some wear and tear and it lacks what is now basic technology on other cruise ships. For example, they are going paperless with their itineraries posting them electronically on the TV set in your stateroom and in the elevators. This proved to be quite a nuisance. If they want to save paper I would recommend sharing this information electronically on free WIFI as many other cruise lines now do. Finally, and I profess that I like to be entertained, I found entertainment on this ship lacking in both variety and quality. As a luxury cruiseline, I expected a higher standard. Although "Les Gaugines" were excellent hostesses, their routines became repetitive by the end of an 1 day cruise. During the day, activities were limited as well. I am used to having options on larger cruise ships and would have appreciated a bit more variety on this one. Evening shows were adequate, with British singing duo of Mark and Abby being a standout, as was the Polynesian dance troupe from Tahiti. All in all though, this was a great cruise and is one that I would recommend. Happy to answer any questions you may have. Read Less
16 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: December 2017
We went to see the different islands. If we had known in advance there are no ports with docks we would not have chosen this cruise as I have back issues. One must tender in to all the islands. I had signed up for excursions in advance of ... Read More
We went to see the different islands. If we had known in advance there are no ports with docks we would not have chosen this cruise as I have back issues. One must tender in to all the islands. I had signed up for excursions in advance of the cruise but had to cancel all. Such a disappointment. This is not the trip for older adults. I did not see any information offered by the ship in regards to tendering. From our cabin all the islands looked beautiful. Our in room service by our butler was excellent. The food was very good and we did enjoy Le Veranda for dining. The dining crew were exceptionally good. They could not do enough for everyone. We did wish there had been onboard lectures about the islands. There were experts on board but we could not find where they might lecture if they did so. Read Less
31 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
We chose this cruise line because we wanted to see as many of the islands as possible in the short amount of time we were able to leave home. We planned to choose our favorites and return another time when we can really go more into depth. ... Read More
We chose this cruise line because we wanted to see as many of the islands as possible in the short amount of time we were able to leave home. We planned to choose our favorites and return another time when we can really go more into depth. This cruise was perfect. We used their services for all our travel arrangements and were glad we did. The flight from LAX to Papeete was delayed over an hour, and we only had a two hour window from plane to ship anyway. We would have been really worried about making it had we made our own arrangements. Turned out a good 50 cruisers were on that plane! Embarkation was seamless. Clear signage and lei welcome at the airport, a comfortable bus to the ship (maybe 10-15 min ride), easy passport/docs review and right away our butler appeared to escort us to our suite (816). Shernan was incredible, start to finish, and we are so glad to have had his help. He asked us how much of his involvement we would like and gently recommended we allow him to handle things for us. He asked us a few questions about our dining habits, meal preferences, times, activity level, previous Polynesian visits, etc and we told him to take over! He handled our excursion selections, made dinner reservations, delivered our coffee every morning, hors d'oeuvres in the evening and everything in between. He really knew his business. Loved the fitness room and the spa. All the equipment was very new and thoughtfully organized. Yoga mats, yoga ball, foam rollers there too, and the space was kept spotlessly clean. The spa was great! Knowledgeable staff and be sure to check out the free hammam. You don't need to purchase a treatment to use the hammam and it's open same hours as the spa. A hidden gem! I used it several times and never once saw another person. It's huge and could easily seat 15+. Dining was impeccable. I have no idea what these folks with the negative reviews are talking about! The food was always hot, always delicious, the displays were beautifully arranged and without fail, the best staff we've encountered. They were always smiling and genuinely seemed happy to be there, any time of day or evening. Same with all the staff throughout the ship. Every staff interaction resulted in a positive experience, and most often they exceeded our expectations! Walk to the bar for a drink expecting to wait, but no, they'll happily bring it over! Missed lunch? They'll recreate your request and deliver it to you poolside, or to your suite.. the list goes on and on. While we missed much of the evening entertainment offerings, we did make it to the final one where they had a local Polynesian dance troupe aboard and the show was thrilling. Interactive, with various guests being asked to the stage, etc., and honestly, just hilarious. We were SO glad we made it. Apparently the staff talent show is something to see as well.. many guests were talking about it the next day. We had lots of questions for the excursions staff and all were met with smiles and thorough explanations. We booked one at nearly every port and were quite surprised to find their prices were very close to what we could find on shore ourselves! Normally we get off the ship and do our own thing, but after the first couple days we got on the excursion train and didn't regret it. Some of our ports of call were very small, and the provider was booked by the ship anyway! All of our excursions were handled professionally and we had a fantastic time. Do not miss the marina! It was so easy to walk down and spend an hour or two kayaking in the beautiful bays before or after an excursion. No, you can't swim there because it's unsafe. Makes perfect sense. The ship itself is understated, beautiful and maintained to the highest standard. Yes, it is 20+ years old, but so what? The ship was very clean and I never once smelled anything like mildew described by others, and I'm quite sensitive. Most everything was new and clean, like the comfy cushions on deck and the couch / pillows etc in our suite. The wood was lacquered and shone brilliantly, everything worked perfectly including the AC. Zero maintenance issues. Easy on / off the ship. Careful tender staff. We looked at other cruises like Regent Seven Seas and others and this price was several thousand dollars lower than their comparable offerings. If you cruise simply to see a ship, and want to be on something brand new, then maybe the sight of the old standard men's shaver connection in the bathroom isn't for you and you belong on a different line. If you want to sail on a gorgeous ship with thoughtful, caring staff to all the little islands you won't see on the other ships, then this is the place for you. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2017
This is the third time we cruise with Paul Gauguin and we were so glad that we picked the right cruise to the S. Pacific islands. We cruised from Fiji to Tahiti and each island was so lush vegetation and beautiful The food was good and we ... Read More
This is the third time we cruise with Paul Gauguin and we were so glad that we picked the right cruise to the S. Pacific islands. We cruised from Fiji to Tahiti and each island was so lush vegetation and beautiful The food was good and we were so impressed by the restaurant staffs with majority of them were Filipinos from the Maîtres' D to the busboys and all of them gave us excellent service. We've been cruising a lot and we have to say that this is the best restaurant staffs we ever experienced in the past 25 yrs. of our cruises. Our cabin maid was also a Filipino and she was courteous and v. responsible too. The Excursion head was also excellent, he was from a European country which we forgot where was the place and he has a lot of patience to answer many of our questions regarding booking of the excursions. We took a v. special excursion in Bora Bora, the Aquatic Walk under 12 feet in the water to see the tropical fish, corals and sting ray. My wife and I are non-swimmers and yet we had a ball going down in the ocean to see so many terrific fish. One draw back of this cruise was they have the show kind of late at night, it starts at 9:30 p.m., with a full day visiting the islands and by the time we finished dinner was already time to go to bed. We only saw two show, the first one was performed by the Tahitian dancers on ship and they were very good..........then the second time was the last night when we arrived in Papeete, Tahiti and they invited a top professional Tahitian Dance Group to perform and they were really great. We really enjoyed visiting Aitutaki, Cook Islands, this is a small island but all the houses have a nice mowed lawn, the guide told us that it is mandatory by the gov. that each house must mow their lawn or else they will have to pay a fine. The island itself has beautiful Blue Lagoons and tons of coconut trees, mango, banana, noni fruit trees in the whole island. During the cruise they have 2 great speakers who conducted a few lecturers, first one was Jean Michel Cousteau who is a v. famous lecturer, environmentalist, educator marine & flim producer. The second lecturer was Steven Hooper, a specialist in the arts of the Pacific region and North America. He gave great lectures of the culture, history and the customs of the Polynesians. On the whole we would highly recommended this cruise to everyone who are nuts about the S. Pacific islands. Read Less
7 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: August 2016
Tahiti & the Society Islands. I had very high expectations for this trip. The Paul Gauguin exceeded my expectations in every way. The ship is small (332 passengers) and that is a huge plus. Staffing is 1.5/1 and that is great. We had ... Read More
Tahiti & the Society Islands. I had very high expectations for this trip. The Paul Gauguin exceeded my expectations in every way. The ship is small (332 passengers) and that is a huge plus. Staffing is 1.5/1 and that is great. We had an upgraded suite that was just terrific in every way. Our butler and housekeeper were on top of our every need. Dining - fresh locally caught fish every night - every night! There are themed lunch buffets every day. Breakfast buffet is also wonderful. You also can order from a menu at breakfast and lunch. The food was terrific! The fish at dinner was just phenomenal. Any of those dinners would be a $40+ price in Hawaii. Go to the Crew Follies. You will be pleasantly surprised with the talent some of these young folks have. And while in port you can do several water activities right off the back of the ship. Service... Let me say this... I never heard the word "no" all week. Everyone went out of their way to say "yes". This was a World Class way of creating raving fans. The other thing about the staff is that we had a blast with all of them. I told them when we left that we will talk about them for years to come and we will miss them. They were an integral part of an amazing experience. Our travel partners who have gone on more than a dozen cruises said that this staff was the best they have experienced. Shore Excursions run the gamut from active water sports to cultural tours. If you get bored on this trip, that's on you. Can't happen as far as I am concerned. We hope to cruise again with Paul Gauguin in the near future. To sum up, when we filled out our satisfaction form we had to add a page. Read Less
19 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
We picked this cruise line and itinerary because we needed to go during the summer, and wanted to go to the south pacific (only 2 cruise lines do this in the summer). Celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. Also, we brought along our ... Read More
We picked this cruise line and itinerary because we needed to go during the summer, and wanted to go to the south pacific (only 2 cruise lines do this in the summer). Celebrating our 25th wedding anniversary. Also, we brought along our 13-yr old daughter for an adventure of a lifetime. Flight Is included from Los Angeles to Tahiti in cruise fare. Air Tahiti Nui, 2x5x2 configuration. Comfortable, with modern in-seat entertainment system, better than major domestic carriers (UA, AA). Food was excellent or terrible… hit and miss. Free drinks including mini-champagne bottles. Tahiti airport is tiny! One baggage claim, etc. Hotel We elected to spend a couple nights before cruise in Tahiti at the Intercontinental, did the package deal. Transfer from airport to hotel was uneventful, agent waiting for us to take us to the bus (air conditioned). Check in uneventful, but recommendation: ask about your view! It was 10pm local time when we checked in for a lagoon-view room, so we could not see our view. We were disappointed in the morning to see that our primary view was of the buildings and parking, not really the lagoon. I felt like we got a “left over” room... :( (I attached photo). I could have complained then, but we only had that day to spend at the hotel, so it was not worth my time to go complain. Any of the pool/lagoon view rooms would be fine. Nice pool, makes you feel like you are really on vacation. Lagoonarium wowed us until we went snorkeling around the islands. Sat am we had to check out at 11am, but couldn’t go to ship until 3pm…so dead time, I guess we could have swam, or taken a taxi to the market and back in time for lunch (which is included)… but would have been nice if they coordinated timing and offered “market with lunch” shuttles, etc that we figured out AFTER 1pm. Hotel staff did not volunteer this info to us, we learned from other guests. Overall, nice, but expensive way to adjust to the local time zone. Cruise Embarkation - Bus picked us up from hotel just in time to check in at ship. They have this coordinated very well! Waited in AC bus til the tent line diminished, and then breezed through to ship, to elevator, to theater lounge, where we were checked in, photographed, and given id cards in less than 10 minutes. Total time from hotel to our ship room, about 45 minutes! We were escorted to our room immediately, shown around. Our luggage was waiting in our room. Nice so that we can unpack immediately. Then went to make dinner reservations, and were checking out the ship by 4pm. Disembarkation – we have to put our luggage out the night before (like most cruises), and leave our carryons with us. We did have time after we got off the ship to id our luggage, and put some toiletries into our bags before they were taken to the airport for us. Very smooth process. Bus was waiting for us for the airport. We realized that the majority of people on the flight from LA to Papeete were doing the same exact itinerary as us, so you will get to know those folks! And we were able to say our good byes on the 8 hour flight returning from Tahiti to LAX. Meals/drinks Drinks are included in the cruise price. Drinks of the day, daily, yum! The staff started remembering our favorites by day 2 – wow! I couldn’t even remember their names! Breakfast – room service (early to ontime every time), restaurants – mixed buffet/service. Nice variety. Eggs benedict to toast and jam. Lunch (after our morning snorkel excursions) – we ate in the French (but not French food at lunch) and Tahitian restaurants (but not Tahitian food at lunch). Buffet/service combo. Salads, to fresh pasta, to burgers/pizza, to local specialties like tuna cru. Dinner – 3 dining choices, 2 of which need reservations. Main dining room was just as good as the others. Food was presented very attractively, very French style. Very attentive service from staff. I mentioned casually of my lactose intolerance the first night at dinner. Next thing I know, specially assigned staff provided me the next night’s menu (regardless of where I planned to dine, they KNEW somehow!), and I would select menu items that the chef would ensure were prepared without dairy for me. That’s service! Without reservations, we never had to wait for a table, we typically went between 6:30-7:30pm to dinner. Summer dresses, nice slacks/tops, would be fine for all 3 venues. Bring a pareo/scarf/etc for multitasking in chilly rooms/lounges. Men – my hubby wore “Hawaiian” shirts (any buttoned shirt) and slacks (dockers) every day, and was fine. Entertainment We attended the evening show after dinner most evenings. Note they start late: 9:30pm, and we were up and out of our room most mornings by 7:30am to do snorkeling, so long days! Some activities throughout the day, most without huge turnouts, sometimes just a couple of people. Minimal activities, if any between 4:30 and 6pm. Happy hour? Again, drinks free, and freeflowing. Kids/Cousteau program – no activities geared just for kids outside of the Cousteau program. We originally were thinking of having our 13-yr-old daughter do this, but when we went to register on day2, we saw that the average age/gender of kids was 10 and boys, even though target was 9-17. Most of the activities overlapped with excursions, so we skipped the program. Excursions We did not reserve any before the start of the cruise. Most times we were fine signing up 2 days in advance. Day before had limited choices as excursions for the next day were filling up. We did get lucky and reserve (in the am) a same-day (afternoon) excursion once. Most days we went snorkeling. Tahaa, private motu had plenty of self-guided snorkeling, so just did that. Stingray/shark encounter was fabulous and even doable for non-swimmers in 3-4 feet of water. Dolphin/whale watching was amazing, even saw tiger sharks, sea turtles, and advanced surfers. Service Excellent – friendly, willing to help. Wow! I could get used to this lifestyle! By the way, we did the laundry package for $60 pp. Package said that it would be next day service, but if we submitted by 9am, we always got back same day by about 4pm. If I had known this, I would have brought only 3 dresses, and 2 swimsuits (I brought 5 dresses and 3 swimsuits for 12 days). Ship I had read some reviews that claimed the ship was in poor shape, I did not experience this. I have been on Princess and Celebrity ships that were just 2 years old, and in the same shape as this ship. This ship looked like it was well maintained. Our room was very well maintained. My understanding is that the ship is scheduled for dry dock remodel next year – please check. Cabin We had room 738, middle of the ship, category C. Not more than 1 min walk to either elevator. And just below “deck chairs?” – 6am most mornings…but next door neighbor did not hear them. Room itself was very nice, rich wood interior, LOTS of storage space. Our suitcases fit under the bed. We each had a small closet, plenty of drawers, shelving to put everything in its place for 3 of us. Bathroom also had plenty of storage, I was pleasantly surprised. Only one outlet in the bathroom though, for shavers only. We had queen bed set up, with the armchair converted into a pullout single bed. Cozy, but doable for 3 of us. Overall Was it worth the PG price? Yyyyeeeessss, for a once in a lifetime adventure to be treated luxuriously, spoiled, and snorkel daily. Read Less
8 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: July 2016
Fabulous experience. Took a one week cruise from Tahiti to Tahiti through the Society Islands and loved every minute of it. Love that the cost is all inclusive so drinks, either alcoholic or soft drinks are included. Great crew. Wait staff ... Read More
Fabulous experience. Took a one week cruise from Tahiti to Tahiti through the Society Islands and loved every minute of it. Love that the cost is all inclusive so drinks, either alcoholic or soft drinks are included. Great crew. Wait staff is primarily from the Philippines and the captain, first mate, etc from Croatia. Could not have better service. Excellent cuisine. We particularly enjoyed the main dining room but also enjoyed the restaurant on the lido deck. My daughter fell ill one day and the medical staff were equally terrific. The cabins are about what you expect. Nicely appointed, small, nice amenities. The lectures were excellent. We didn't partake of the evening entertainment which is typical "cruise ship" fare. Instead, after dinner we headed to the back deck for cocktails, conversation and dancing. This is a perfect cruise for honeymooners or babymooners btw. As to our stops, we loved them all but Bora Bora and Moorea were over the top wonderful. Don't miss the mutu on Bora Bora. We ventured out there the first morning of our 2 day stay and, hardly any other passengers were there. We felt as if we were on our own private island. I don't know if it is because we spend the day on the motu at Tahaha the day before or the fact that there were no facilities on Bora Bora but, we considered ourselves blessed. Also included in your fare is unlimited use of the water toys - kayaks, paddle boards and snorkel gear. We're not much for taking organized excursions so we rented our own car on Bora Bora and explored the island. They have an electric car that's quite cool. It's one seat wide with the other seat behind it and half the price of a regular vehicle. Friends of ours rented that which we didn't discover until we returned our "regular" car. If I had known, I would have gone for the electric. Do take time to spend pre or post cruise in Tahiti. We spent our last night in an over the water bungaloo at Le Meridian and it was just fantastic. Overall: I have always wanted to go to French Polynesia/Tahiti and all I can say is that it is even better than you think it might be. It's only 3 hours further than Hawaii and is way less crowded, the people are wonderful and the French influence is everywhere but primarily in great cuisine. Next time you're thinking of headed to Hawaii, think about Tahiti. Read Less
10 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2016
We are from British Columbia, Canada, My list of world travels was Tahiti area and West Polynesia. I am a avid Tripadvisor reader and learned from reviews that this vessel was" All Inclusive" and visited 8 islands and had ... Read More
We are from British Columbia, Canada, My list of world travels was Tahiti area and West Polynesia. I am a avid Tripadvisor reader and learned from reviews that this vessel was" All Inclusive" and visited 8 islands and had excellent service. We flew to LA then to Papeete Airport (8)hrs. The Papeete Airport is not fun and took us over 1 hr to get through customs as only two agents and very crowded and hot standing then waiting for luggage. We flew with Tahiti Air and very good service, got breakfast snack. But enough leg room and made us comfortable with their flying kit, blanket ect. Gauguin people got us on a bus and took us to the Intercontinental Resort. This was a nice perk, as little sleep on the plane. Got a adequate room, sleep, meal, and transportation to the ship. Thanks and wish the meal was included also at the LeMeridien Resort. The Gauguin Vessel had 318 passengers and can get on 332. I think it was 277 deck workers. Christopher pool deck ask our name and he had his name tag on and looked nice in white uniform. Christopher knew our names every day all the 11 days! He knew our drinks also! Was attentive and the best service we had on the pool deck. When Christopher was not working we felt the service was much slower for drinks ect. He was not pushy, quiet, calm, smiling, concerned how we felt in choppy, windy weather and very friendly in nature. I think one of the best deck employees we have had and been on a few other cruises. Another bar and waiter was very nice man, my wife felt him sincere, friendly and very help full was Franciso. Worked at the piano bar, decks, also restaurants. Knew our drinks, and name every day, thanks guys, great work, and the best! We did like every day the piano bar and listening to Marius Baetica piano tunes. Nice guy, great melodies of old and new and movie tunes. Thanks for nice music and atmosphere. Must mention Phillip at the Le Veranda Restaurant always wanted his section, his dry humour was good, best service and recommendations. The breakfast and lunch areas are smaller but adequate. The dinner restaurants are 5* and meals excellent quality. Now for our maid Eleanor who was so friendly, knew our names every day, smiled, greeted us all the time, very excellent room maintenance, very clean state room we liked the decor, all things very clean, bathroom items appreciated, fruit, fridge full all days, turn down every day, with chocolates so nice! She works very hard, effeciate timing of cleaning rooms and maintenance. We missed seeing her face and greetings, all the best in life Eleanor!! The information desk lady's Tahitian ALL great, friendly, speak English, beautiful, pleasant. This ships itinerary, route, islands and time at islands,in Polynesia is the best way to see the area. Enough time is given also to take tours, relax onboard. The Tahiti entertainment group is much appreciated and worthwhile for the atmosphere and pictures. The gift shop supplies seemed to be short in mens clothes as wanted a Paul Gauguin shirt, T-shirt but not in a Large seize. Told by manager all purchased previous trip. I suggest more souvenirs, postcards, picture books be available. Shirts of Polynesia in my seize also not available. Why not replenish every trip? I always have purchased a shirt for a memory. We happened to get the first big storm, lots of wind, waves but the ship did well and so did the captain. Spent another extra day at Bora Bora. The Jean Cousteau lectures and helpers were great to hear and appreciated the pictures. We talked to people on board who had been on 14 trips and still booking more! Check out the ship islands and own Moto To's(islands) and you might be interested. The rooms are a good seize with port holes or windows, we had deck 3, queen size bed and good location to get tenders a shore. Quiet and no vibration on this ship as some we have taken had. Yes we would take this vessel to the Cook Islands next time because of the ships crew service and the seize. Most were adults (40-70), only (12-14) children on this trip. Great Experience and a dream come true! Softsand-13. Read Less
3 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2016
Heard about how good this line was and tried it. It was better than expected. 5 Star/Excellent rating in my book. Check in was speedy and EXCELLENT Cabin was clean and perfect EXCELLENT Ship ... Read More
Heard about how good this line was and tried it. It was better than expected. 5 Star/Excellent rating in my book. Check in was speedy and EXCELLENT Cabin was clean and perfect EXCELLENT Ship was EXCELLENT Staff was EXCELLENT Excursions were EXCELLENT Food was EXCELLENT Dinning was the highlight every day. 15 staff in dining room each meal including trained sommelier with excellent wine suggestions. Cruise is all inclusive with no tipping of staff, wine and drinks included (some special liquors have a charge), mini-bar in cabin included. Absolutely the best trip we have ever done. If I had to find something less than perfect it would be that two singers sang off key :-) Tours of the bridge, galley and engine room are not advertised but ask at reception desk on first day.. Small ship, 330 pax and 550 feet long. If you want a great cruise this is the one! Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: October 2015
We've travelled on other cruise lines and ships so this review is relative to those cruises. The price we paid was more than twice as much as we have paid on other lines for similar accommodation. The cabins and balconies are no ... Read More
We've travelled on other cruise lines and ships so this review is relative to those cruises. The price we paid was more than twice as much as we have paid on other lines for similar accommodation. The cabins and balconies are no bigger but the food however was better and the service impeccable. There are lots of staff and they go out of their way to help you, for example, taking buffet plates out of your hand as you walk back to your table. Wine is included and I was pleasantly surprised by the high quality of the wine provided. Negative points are down to the way the ship is run. We were told that embarkation was 15:00. With other cruise lines if you turn up a bit early, they look after you but not Paul Gauguin. They make you wait on the quayside in the sun with only enough chairs and cover for a few people. Some cruise lines allow you on-board ship even in the morning, though not to your cabin. The security on the gate was unhelpful and so we just waited. 6 star all inclusive cruise lines usually include shore trips in the price but not Paul Gauguin, though cruise prices are similar. Shore excursions are extra and expensive. We wondered if they were trying to push them when we anchored for two days off Moorea. There are two main bays, Cook's Bay near the main town and the other, Opunohu bay, not. We were in Opunohu bay and if you went ashore you soon came back as there was nothing to see. There was room in Cook's Bay and no other ship there when we were, so I just wonder why we were isolated. The ship is great and it's a great way to see the islands but for the cost it should be better. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2015
Before boarding I made an error by reading the very few negative reviews about this ship. It left me apprehensive about our upcoming cruise. It did not take long to realise I would have been better to read the several thousand ... Read More
Before boarding I made an error by reading the very few negative reviews about this ship. It left me apprehensive about our upcoming cruise. It did not take long to realise I would have been better to read the several thousand possative reviews. The food was fantastic and the free wine and cocktails just kept coming and coming. The crew were mixed but most dining room and housekeeping staff were wonderfully obliging Fillipinos. they worked well together and seemed to truly enjoy looking after us. At just under 20,000 tons she is classed as a small cruise liner but it was good in that we got to know many of the other passengers. launch transports were frequent to all ports and advice on what to see ashore was given but generally not in writing. (Pitty) Plenty of written information was provided on the optional activities. The prices of these activities to an Australian seemed way over the top. I did only one a snorkeming trip af a couple of hours with 8 or so others each paying $119 US. Most activites were much dearer. I did look at the diving activites and found them quite reasonable with many around the same cost as my snorkelling trip?? The diving was handled by the ships diving team where as most non diving activities were using shore based contracters. I think the shipping company is making as much as the contracters and doing nothing to earn it. My only other negative was the cost of internet usage. I opted for a package of around $50 US for the 11 days but could not send photos or search the net or I would have run our and have to purchase a second. Free internet is expected and quite normal in most of the world today. But don't let an old Australian put you off it was a wonderfull experiance Read Less
4 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: May 2015
We had cabin 813 on the top deck. It came with a butler. The cabin was great,,a king size bed and all the closet space we needed. The veranda was large with sufficient room to have butler delivered breakfast served on it. The ship was ... Read More
We had cabin 813 on the top deck. It came with a butler. The cabin was great,,a king size bed and all the closet space we needed. The veranda was large with sufficient room to have butler delivered breakfast served on it. The ship was immaculate, the employees very pleasant and helpful. Food was superb, as good as any I have had (and I have dined in many Michelin rated restaurants) so I rate the ship as six stars. We took tours at each island and we were not disappointed with any. We had only 240 passengers on a ship that holds 350 so we never had any crowds during the ship. June is the start of the dry season so we never had rain on any of the days. There was entertainment on every night, as well as special shows on some afternoons (native dancers form a island, etc). We were met at the airport by a Paul Gauguin representative and from then on everything was taken care of. On boarding the ship we were met by our butler and escorted to our room. In short order, our luggage arrived and the butler gave us advice on unpacking which we wanted to do ourselfs. There was fresh fruit on the table in the cabin and also small finger sandwiches. We had fresh fruit every day, renewed as necessary. At 4PM small treats were delivered by the butler. The bars served a special cocktail every day as well as anything you could want. The wines available were excellent with a wide selection available. A after dinner drink of fine cognac or port was great. All were included in the cost and we never paid for anything extra except the tours. A cautionary note, the store on the ship has a great selection of gifts. If you purchase anything over $500 you have to get a tax stamp at the airport. The line at the airport to get this stamp was long and only one employee working at one window. It took over 45 minutes standing in line with only fans blowing to get the paperwork stamped. It was terrible. The airport itself was a nightmare, crowded, hot and you have to walk out to the plane and climb up the portable stairs to the claim. Disabled beware. Again, the Paul Gauguin is a fantastic experience, The 11 day cruise to the Cook islands and the Society Islands was six stars. Read Less
Sail Date: May 2015
Try a different cruise around French Polynesia and visit different ports. The cabin was large with a sofa. There was a full bath tub in the bathroom and plenty of space of the shelves for personal items. The was a small desk to place my ... Read More
Try a different cruise around French Polynesia and visit different ports. The cabin was large with a sofa. There was a full bath tub in the bathroom and plenty of space of the shelves for personal items. The was a small desk to place my laptop and other work items. The ship is small with a capacity of about 700 passengers. One main dining room and a specialty dining room. There is a restaurant with a buffet. The meals were all very good and the staff was outstanding. The entertainment was limited due to the size of the ship with one large public room. The ship has most of the activities of a larger ship but smaller in size. The ship can dock in small ports were large ship must anchor off shore. The is great for snorkeling all the equipment was free to use. The Internet service was fair. Read Less
2 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: March 2015
We were three senior couples on the ten day Paul Gauguin cruise in the Society Islands starting from Papeete, Tahiti. It's a trek getting from the east coast US to Tahiti which required a 12 hr layover in LA before boarding our ... Read More
We were three senior couples on the ten day Paul Gauguin cruise in the Society Islands starting from Papeete, Tahiti. It's a trek getting from the east coast US to Tahiti which required a 12 hr layover in LA before boarding our flight and arriving in Papeete before daybreak. The cruise package included a bus pickup at the airport (two busloads of us) and a short ride to the Intercontinental Resort which went well. This was necessary because boarding the ship is not scheduled until late afternoon. Check-in at the resort went smoothly considering the number of people needing rooms to rest up until the afternoon bus ride to the port. The resort was beautiful and the included buffet lunch was quite nice. However, it was very hot with no breeze that day and after being required to vacate our rooms late morning, there were limited places to go to get out of the sun. There were some loungers in the shade by the pool and lobby seating but not enough to accommodate the many wanting some relief. Then, the air conditioning on the bus to the port was not working so the start of our cruise was not off to a good start. All of us had been on Seabourn cruises before so it was natural for us to compare Paul Gauguin to Seabourn and this may not be fair as Seabourn is the top of the line and more expensive. We stayed in the deck seven veranda cabins which were nicely equipped and well-appointed. Everything is all-inclusive except premium wines and there is a well stocked cabin mini fridge with beer and soft drinks but no wine. We requested a bottle of wine for our room but were told room service woud bring us glasses of wine but not a bottle. I would think it would be more costly and more inconvenient for the staff to serve wine by the glass in the cabins than to just leave a bottle at the guest's request....and what do you do if you want a refill? The three dining facilities aboard were quite adequate for the 300 or so passengers so there was no problem getting seating, although some evening hours were more popular than others and required booking the day before. The meals were excellent and very well presented and the wait staff was good. In fact, we found all of the staff on board equal to the touted service of the Seabourn cruises. The sommeliers, on the other hand, were like so many around the world..........all-knowing and a bit snooty with their guests while trying to make inexpensive wine sound like top of the line products. Yes, the wine at the meals was, in our opinion, not very good and we are not wine snobs. (Good box wines are not excluded from our personal consumption at home.) One white and one red are selected each evening by the staff but you could ask for something different if you did not favor the selection. One evening the sommelier left our table and did not return after we requested something other than what we had started with for that night. The menus were nicely varied over the course of the cruise with cuisines from various countries featured each day, especially at the lunch buffets. For the evening meal, if you didn't want anything on the menu, you were free to choose from a good selection of anything from a standard menu. This was the same for breakfast and lunch where you could choose from the menu if nothing from the buffet line suited you. The evening entertainment in the main salon was varied and fun as well as most of the afternoon lectures. The ship schedule included enough activities to keep everyone interested, even for those who might not choose to go ashore any particular day. Even the fitness center had enough equipment and was never crowded. A particular delight was the Gauguines and Gauguins, a group of eight Polynesian performers who danced and sang in the daily onboard and evening shows but were seen every day throughout the ship and on shore playing music and helping guests. If you like a drink in a quiet place with friendly conversation before dinner or even after dinner, forget it. There is absolutely no place on the ship to go to relax with a drink in the evening because every venue has music so loud, conversation is impossible. Even in the small piano bar, the music is electronically amplified. The performer, Luis, is very talented and does not need any artificial enhancement to display his huge repertoire. We found we could arrange the chairs in the side aisle outside the wall of the piano bar to accommodate the six of us while using the wall to shield the amplification and give us an opportunity to talk. We did this most of the nights and to our amazement Ray, the bartender, knew all of our drink selections after the first night. One evening while preparing our chairs in the aisle outside the piano bar, Ray saw us enter. As I walked around the wall to order drinks, he was just finishing up pouring our usual selections, remembering what all of us had the previous evening. That's some service! As a suggestion, they might convert the casino area to a more intimate and quiet cocktail area since we never saw anyone at the tables or at the slots the entire ten days we were on board. As for shore excursions, we selected some from the ship and some private. We took informative island bus tours on Huahine, Bora Bora and Moorea and snorkled on Bora Bora, Moorea, Rangiroa and Fakarava. The ship sponsored bus tour on Moorea called Island Drive and Belvedere went around the entire island which was informative but there were stops solely set up with certain vendors for us to shop. Late in the afternoon, the bus pulled into a regular shopping center to let us off and the troops rebelled at more shopping. The driver politely drove on. We have snorkled extensively in the Bahamas but for water clarity, comfortable temperature and different fish including swimming with docile sharks and rays, you can't beat the Society Islands. On Bora Bora, we took a private snorkeling trip with Fabien of Pure Snorkeling (www.puresnorkeling.com). He is a very knowledgable guide, taking us places for good snorkeling without strong currents even on a very windy day. He is also very congenial and funny and highly recommended. On Fakarava, we had a five person private tour with Ato Lissant (google Ato Fakarava) and went to a motu with a small lagoon. We snorkeled while he and his mate cooked a fresh fish kebob lunch with salad and coconut bread made on the same fire. The cold Hinano local beer was also refreshing. Later, we went outside the reef and anchored close to the shore where Ato and the mate took a net and snorkeled, catching about 100 fish near the reef in 15 min. On Rangiroa, we snorkeled near the entrance reef where there were an abundance of fish. The snorkel tour boat crew would toss fish scraps at you and you would suddenly be surrounded by a wall of fish inches from your face mask, some gently nipping at your body. Fascinating! We found a combination of island tours and snorkeling gave us the best overview of the Society Islands in the short time we were there. We were told by several locals that the 9/11 attacks devestated the economy of the islands because air travel from all countries after that came to a screeching halt. Several times we were thanked for coming to the Society Islands. Those who live there are not pushy in the least, are friendly and truly act as if they welcome you. What a vast difference from other parts of the world. The Paul Gauguin experience is a luxury cruise on a smaller and more intimate ship with no crowding or waiting in lines. For those wanting to know how they might fit in with other passengers, it appeared the average age of guests was about mid-fifties but there were a few families with very well behaved kids in the 10 to 16 yr range. With few exceptions, the staff is supurb, the dining top notch and the ports visited both varied and fascinating. Read Less
6 Helpful Votes
Sail Date: June 2014
I’ve traveled twice with the M/S Paul Gauguin, and in my experiences it has been a world apart. That’s its strength and its weakness. When it comes to Tahiti and the Society Islands, PG has a legendary reputation and nearly a cult ... Read More
I’ve traveled twice with the M/S Paul Gauguin, and in my experiences it has been a world apart. That’s its strength and its weakness. When it comes to Tahiti and the Society Islands, PG has a legendary reputation and nearly a cult following for the quality of the experience it provides. As evidence of this, more than half the travelers on my recent cruise were “repeaters.” PG’s Tahiti reputation is hard earned and well deserved on several fronts. As a floating restaurant, PG mixes quality, style, elegance, and informality into a unique brew. There is an endless variety of food, the option to order “off menu” at every meal, and choices for restaurants — all at no extra charge. No matter what dining option you choose, the wait staff is attentive, enthusiastic, and responsive to your needs. This is not to say the food service couldn’t be tweaked. For example, I don’t really need Mexican, Italian, or America-themed lunch buffets. I’m in the South Pacific for heaven’s sake. How about local-themed buffets every day? As a hotel, the service excels at every level. When calling Reception for assistance with everything from an uncooperative safe to the services of a tailor to a need for an extension cord, I never waited more than five minutes to have a person at my door. As with any hotel, there are some glitches like the lingering smell of mildew in some of the cabin corridors or the inability to get air conditioning to work consistently — or at all — in some cabins. In all of these areas the staff is more than willing to do everything they can to ensure your satisfaction. With PG you are in a world apart and they brings their full attention to every aspect of your food and lodging. Unfortunately, PG does not do a very good job of connecting with the world beyond Tahiti. When PG steps outside its geographic sphere of familiarity, it stumbles. This is true in matters both small and great. And it has been true for me twice. For example, on my recent cruise we went to Vanuatu, Guadalcanal, Papua New Guinea, and Cairns. Nonetheless, the ship’s program ran as if we were in Tahiti. The ship offered language lessons in Tahitian and French even though no locals within a thousand miles of our itinerary spoke those languages. How hard would it have been to have classes teach a few words in the dialects of the people we visited? We also had the opportunity to learn how to tie — pareos which no one in the area wears — and to buy postcards picturing Tahiti. How hard would it have been to stock some more relevant postcards in the Boutique? We were traveling through an area rich in World War II history, but were treated to lectures about Paul Gauguin. Don’t get me wrong, these lectures were great. If we had been in Tahiti, they would have been phenomenal, but we were in Papua New Guinea. Of course, there were wonderful — and on point lectures— by Cousteau, and a guest was allowed to give an impromptu lecture on Guadalcanal, but there had been no advance effort to connect the ship’s lectures to its itinerary. A further disappointment was the replacement of the promised anthropologist with some combination of a magician and a performance artist. These acts would have been better left in third-tier Vegas lounges. Though this lack of effort to intersect with a world beyond Tahiti was merely somewhat odd in most cases, in others it was a major problem. The ship’s programs are well-honed for PG’s standard itineraries, but there didn’t seem to have been any inclination to connect to what was a new world for it to travel through. For example, when traveling in the Society Islands, the ship will exchange money for its guests. This was not done — except after vociferous complaint, and then only for a few stops — on this trip. Surely the need for local currency could have been anticipated. As a result, passengers were often in situations where their money was not accepted and where there were no ATMs or banks. The saddest thing about this was the local craftspeople who went without sales. Perhaps the worst of the failures concerned shore excursions. The port talks were abysmal. There was no more information or accuracy from the presenter — and frequently there was much less — than a person could get on the web. I can understand, I suppose, that the person in charge of shore excursions hadn’t been to the particular ports we visited. But I can’t understand not doing a better job of learning about them. For example, people would ask, “Is there good snorkeling nearby?” or, “Are US dollars accepted?” or, “What’s the shopping like?” In all cases, the answer was some variation of “I don’t know?” The shore excursions themselves were poorly researched, uneven at best, and flat out unsafe at worst. Even if the ship hadn’t been to these ports previously, surely there are experts who could have informed the planning. Excursions took guests to swimming holes at low tide when they were closed, to a museum that wasn’t open, to a promised three-hour walking tour with snack that lasted 25 minutes without a snack, and to a snorkeling experience that was an exercise in staying alive in the water. PG was responsive to most of the shortcomings and refunded all or a portion of the cost for some of the most egregious excursions, but people who are paying a premium for a cruise should not be expected to serve as guinea pigs. Finally, there was great unhappiness among many of the divers on board. For a host of reasons, many who had traveled thousands of miles just to dive were unable to sign up because all the spots were taken. This was not because people were late in trying to sign up. It was because all the spots were taken before everyone had even been processed for embarkation and allowed to sign up. Again, the staff did what it could to open more spots, but they should have known in advance that the large number of divers on board would not be compatible with the limited spots available. To be fair, I have to add that this trip included the most remarkable shore excursion I’ve ever taken. We were the first cruise ship to visit Bougainville in decades and we received a carnival celebration of a welcome. Wave after wave of dancers surrounded us and invited us into their community. We were literally immersed in an unaffected local culture. The last matter of concern for me was the itinerary. It changed at the last minute and Port Moresby was substituted for Rabaul. Port Moresby is a town that virtually no cruise ships or tourists go to because of concerns about violence and instability. Guests on the Port Moresby excursion weren’t even allowed to get off the tour buses at the main viewpoint because it was judged unsafe. In addition, we stayed in Port Moresby for far longer than any other port. We were also told not to get off the ship after dark. We were informed that this itinerary change was because of the ship’s need to refuel. Really? It wasn’t possible to figure this out before advertising a much more attractive port stop? I’d suggest that radical changes in itinerary such as this be accompanied by an option to cancel reservations at no charge. Finally, you can trust PG to provide full value for your lodging and dining dollars, but their charges for pre/post lodging and transfers were at least 30% higher than it was possible to book independently. The bottom line for me is that if I travel with PG again — and I would like to — I would only book an established itinerary that the ship has traveled multiple times over many years. When PG tries to go outside its comfort zone, passengers can become most uncomfortable. Read Less
Sail Date: August 2011
My DH and I went on this cruise to be able to mark off one more destination on our bucket list. It may get crossed off, but won't be forgotten. What a wonderful relaxing and truly magnificent vacation. One thing I have to say about ... Read More
My DH and I went on this cruise to be able to mark off one more destination on our bucket list. It may get crossed off, but won't be forgotten. What a wonderful relaxing and truly magnificent vacation. One thing I have to say about everyone that works on the Paul Gauguin, is that you can see they are so happy to be working there. They always have a smile on their face and they truly all get along with each other. It is like a big family and you can feel this thruout the ship. We flew into Papeete the day before the shipped sailed. We stayed at the InterContinental and it was great. Nice and clean rooms and the grounds are beautiful. Breakfast and lunch came with the package which was really nice. Embarkation was the easiest we have ever had. You walk upon the ship and are handed a cold cloth, then a glass of champagne. Before you finish the champagne you are escorted to your cabin and luggage is already there. SHIP--As everyone else has said, the ship is in need of a total update. It is tired looking, but still very clean. Wish I would have taken the cruise next year. I would like to see the improvements. But, that did not take anything away from the best cruise we have ever taken. When they say all inclusive, that is what they mean. You want it....you got it. Top shelf everything. After we booked the cruise we read that someone else had cabin 731 and it is right below the pool deck. Chairs being moved in the evening and early morning. One thing about it is that it makes you get up early in the morning and that is ok, because we did not miss a thing. Sitting on your balcony, drinking coffee and watching us come into the ports is beautiful. You really get to see the islands in a different way. Don't miss it! FOOD---I have read over and over that food is 5 Stars. I would not go that far, but I do have to say that it was very good. We only ate at one of the restaurants that needed reservations,The Grill, and the rest at the main restaurant. The main restaurant was the best. Very good variety of entrees were offered each night and was able to sit with other people and make alot of good friends. Take advantage of sitting with others. The ship is so small you become acquainted with so many great and interesting people. DRESS CODE---CASUAL for dinner. We totally over packed. My DH wore Dockers with Polo shirts or Hawaiian shirts and top-siders for shoes. I wore sun dresses or Capri's with a light weight top. That was so nice not having to wear formal attire after a full day in the sun and water. Make it easy on yourself and pack light. ISLAND EXCURSIONS---This was the hardest thing for us to decide on. What to do where? Papeete....actually there is not much to do here. We just went into the city and shopped around. Raiatea....We did the Faaroa River and Island Exploration 4X4. This was a great excursion. Since the Island is closed on Sunday, find an excursion. This was a good one. Taha.......We spend all day on the Gauguin's Motu and had alot of fun. Big bar-b-que, lots to drink (as usual)snorkeling, music..fun fun Bora Bora..Sting Ray Ballet and Aqua Safari Underwater walk. The Sting Ray was good. Lots or rays and sharks then you got to snorkel in a different area. Underwater walk was good, but then we talked withsome people that did the same thing on Moorea and it sounded alot better on that island. Just an FYI Moorea.....Trails of the Ancients the first day and it was also very good. Mark does a couple of talks on the ship prior to this excursion. Well worth attending. Second Day on Moorea 8 of us went on land and hired Albert to take us around the Island. Very good and took  time telling us all about the Island and made numerous stops for photos and shopping. Just take the tender to the dock and either he or one of his family members will be there We are not divers, so none of our excursions included that. We did alot of snorkeling and was very good. Watch out for the coral...it really hurts when you don't watch what you are doing....ha ha If you are thinking about going to Tahiti and doing this cruise and not sure it is worth the money....well....IT IS! Book it now and have fun doing just what you want to do. Read Less
Paul Gauguin Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabins 3.0 4.4
Dining 5.0 4.4
Entertainment 4.0 3.8
Public Rooms 4.0 4.3
Fitness Recreation 3.0 3.8
Family 2.0 3.8
Shore Excursion 5.0 4.2
Enrichment 5.0 4.2
Service 4.0 4.7
Value For Money 4.0 4.0
Rates 4.0 4.1

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