Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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I have seen most parts of the world that I actually wish to visit, but not the South Pacific islands. Age 73, not interested in water sports or sunbathing. Ideal vacation would be some sightseeing then curling up with a nice book in the shade at some fabulous beach with a nice breeze. Accommodation ought to be reasonably "civilised", not backpacker level but not $20k per week level either. No problem with up to $700/night for two, excluding air fares. Say, 3-star to 5-star all fair game. So, how should I go about planning this? Month or two, unhurried. Beach house, serviced apartments, hotels. Cities, villages all welcome. I am fine with all, moving, say, weekly. Island hopping? I also speak enough French to get by in French Polynesia. So, all you wise people who have seen the world, any suggestions, any tour companies I should look into? Only Pacific places I have spent extensive time at are Hawaii, New Zealand and Australia. Time to look at that almost-hemisphere left down there...
Tahiti or Fiji maybe. One of the Samoas if you search carefully. New Caledonia is also a delight if you like something closer to the Aussies. Tahiti gets a lot of visitors and deserves to. Fiji not so much and cheap and friendly. Bora Bora is on a lot of hot lists, but I found it very boring spot one would only like if scuba diving or appreciating corals. Tahiti is best bet overall. We liked the Gauguin museum. So, Tahiti or Fiji; French is good in Tahiti; Fiji still has the British overtones. Both have great beaches.
Bora Bora is the most beautiful tropical island I've seen in my life. I enjoyed Moorea, Fiji, Hawaii (Maui), etc but Bora Bora definitely trumped it. I would at least spend some time there. I do agree that it can be boring depending on what you want to do, but if it's mainly relax at a beach/pool and read a book it's at or near the top.
Cook Islands would be an option, though there is definitely not sightseeing to keep you busy for a month. Relaxing would work. Muri lagoon gives the classic south pacific view. Might spend 3 weeks on Rarotonga, and one on Aitutaki. Laid back, english speaking, uses NZd for currency. Lots of flights to New Zealand, and I think one weekly to LA.