Taiohae, capital of Marquesas

The town of Taiohae is located on Nuku Hiva’s southern coast, only a few miles upwind from Hakaui – meaning, it is a slow and bumpy boat ride.

This is the largest sheltered bay in the Marquesas, and it is a little heaven for yachts. There is free wifi (unheard of!) at the snack bar right on wharf; the laundry is “only” $10-12 per load (in contrast Hiva Oa was double that cost); and the 5am veggie and fish markets are right next to the pier.

Early morning fishermen come back with their catch of yellowfin tuna and throw their filleted carcasses to sharks in the murky water.

Depending on the fishermen, the tuna slabs were either very cheap ($2/lb) or if you’re a sweet talker like Sabrina, sometimes free. Like fruit, fish is bountiful here.

But this is the Marquesas, in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and transportation is expensive. We dropped off Adam’s family along with Matt & Judy here, after a wonderful two weeks together sailing north from Hiva Oa. They paid $40 per person for the 1.5hr ride to the airport, to catch their flight back to Tahiti (the flight itself was $700 round trip).

It’s a place that costs a lot to get to – both money and energy – but the rewards have so far been exceeding our wildest expectations.

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