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post #1 of Old 01-31-2003 Thread Starter
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Help w/ French Polynesia Charter

Hi All,

I''m trying to set up/book my honeymoon in late September/early October. The plan so far is to stay for 7 nights at a resort in Bora Bora and then to charter a boat for 5-6 days before returning.

The question re: the charter is how we should set it up. I''ve never chartered a boat before, although I own and cruise the Ches. Bay on a Beneteau 351 that I bought out of a Moorings fleet in Martinique (and a Catalina 30 before that). Most of my cruising has been in the Bay, although I''ve done some ocean racing and I did the sea trial of my boat in the Caribbean before it was professionally delivered:

- My original thought was to charter a larger boat, with captain and cook and just basically be waited on hand and foot and not have to worry about anything. That would eliminate any stress and alleviate me having to worry about the boat at all (for instance leaving it to go ashore), as well as getting the benefit of the captain''s knowledge re: where to go, explore, see & what to eat. The downside is it''s expensive, requires the charter of an otherwise unnecessarily large boat, weds us to meals cooked (for us) on the boat as opposed to restaurants, and means that we have another couple of people aboard during our honeymoon, when we might otherwise want to be alone?

- Then I started thinking about chartering a smaller boat (40ish feet) with just a captain, which seemed to have the same negatives and positives as above w/o some of the expense.

- I''m starting to wonder about just bareboating (probably through the Moorings) a B361. That is essentially the same boat I already own, so I would be familiar with it. It''s a lot cheaper, lets us check out some of the restaurants, and lets us have the boat to ourselves. Of course, it could add *a lot* of stress (dragging anchor through harbors, perhaps sailing in less protected waters than I''m used to, going *thump* against things that aren''t mud or sand, having stuff stolen while away from the boat etc.). We would also not have the perspective of a locally savvy sailor with us (for what that''s worth).

Anybody ever charter in French Polynesia? Know what the weather''s like? Is that a relatively challenging sailing area or an easier one? Anyone ever confronted a situation like this before? Am I a little under-experienced for this type of thing or am I worrying way too much about something that''s going to be relatively easy? Anybody know any more resources for info?


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