After 33 days out at sea on the Pacific, our longest crossing yet and our first double handed ocean crossing, we found ourselves on Nuku Hiva, one of the Marquesas Islands belonging to French Polynesia. This is the westernmost part of French Polynesia and currently the only Marquesan port of entry, due to Covid.
It felt amazing to arrive and surprisingly we here crossed paths with many cruisers which we had stumbled upon during our last months of cruising. Proving the fact that the group of boats currently out at sea aren’t that many, and our paths cross over and over again. It is surprisingly how fast you become friends and the fact that you’ve been in the marina once before is cause enough to barbecue marshmallows together on the beach or being fellow cruisers who have just crossed the Pacific is reason enough to spend your evening helping a fellow boat retrieve their dinghy engine from the bottom of the bay. To be honest, this is very un-Swedish but we really enjoy it.
The cruisers are mostly a very open community, always willing to share information, experience and lend a helping hand when needed. Despite sometimes wanting to cave in to the shy side, we have gotten more and more accustomed to ask if we can borrow tools from other boats or join in on their evening beer rounds on the dock. Quickly to realize that we are far from the only ones to do so, and that these nights give us the best stories and memories we bring with us when we leave for the next destination.
Nuku Hiva was a very green and steep island, holding surprisingly many bays and tons of trails. But life here was also very basic, there was only reception in one bay and all facilities were centralized around this bay. With the island’s remote location, their supply stream wasn’t steady and one had to play it by ear. Some things were completely out (like gasoline and cooking gas) and other things were very highly priced. Once again, we were very happy that we had stocked up a lot in Panama City and the information about better possibilities once arriving to Tahiti. Hearing about other boats needing to restock for 10 people onboard or for a coming month out on remote atolls would just make us appreciate our situation even more.
But our choices also has its downsides, our schedule requires us to a keep a high pace and after just one week of recovery and with the realization that our bottom was so fouled that we needed to haul out and re-paint as soon as possible we realized that we wouldn’t have time to stop in the Tuamotus. We set out for the next passage towards more of French Polynesia, this time the Society Islands, next stop Tahiti. We had a great first encounter with these pacific islands and keep our fingers crossed that we will bump into our cruiser friends again along the way.
Speak to you soon!