Kelli, my Zimbabwean African child, is sailing as a Beauty Specialist on a South Sea Cruise from San Diego to Hawai’i and Tahiti this month…
My child loves hats….!
This is one of her orchid photos from the Hawai’i Botanical Gardens…
What wonderful culture in store for her!
and more dance…!
culture in French Polynesia…
First stop, Hilo Hawaii………….
The landscape of Hilo, on the Big Island of Hawaii, is diverse. Beaches of black, gray, brown and white sand give way to mountains and dramatic waterfalls.
Hilo’s Pana’ewa Rainforest Zoo is the only U.S. zoo in a tropical rainforest. A day trip away are snow-capped Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, with observatories near 11,000 feet on both mountains, and Kilauea Caldera, an active volcano.
Back in town are a farmer’s market, restaurants, shopping and banyan trees planted by celebrities and politicians.
then Lahaina (Maui, Hawaii)………………
Here are Kelli’s stunning photos of orchids in the Botanic Gardens….
Fit for a wedding….
Flowers fit for a wedding indeed…..an announcement has been made!
(See my next post for some stunning news!!!!)
Next, Bora Bora, an island of French Polynesia, which is an overseas collectivity of France in the Pacific Ocean. The island, located about 230 kilometres (143 miles) northwest of Papeete, is surrounded by a lagoon and a barrier reef. In the centre of the island are the remnants of an extinct volcano rising to two peaks, Mount Pahia and Mount Otemanu, the highest point at 727 metres (2,385 feet).
Bora Bora is a major international tourist destination. Produce of the island is mostly limited to what can be obtained from the sea and the plentiful coconut trees, which were historically of economic importance for copra.
The island was inhabited by Polynesian settlers around the 4th century AD. James Cook sighted the island in 1770 and landed that same year. Bora Bora was an independent kingdom until 1888 when its last queen Teriimaevarua III was forced to abdicate by the French who annexed the island as a colony.
Queen Teriimaevarua III, forced to abdicate by the French ….
Over the last few years several resorts consisting of over-the-water bungalows ,have been built on motu (small islands, from Tahitian) surrounding the lagoon,extending on stilts over the lagoon.
beautiful stilt bungalows
Snorkeling and scuba diving in and around the lagoon of Bora Bora are popular activities. Many species of sharks and rays inhabit the surrounding body of water.
Tahiti is the largest in a chain of islands that make up French Polynesia.
The name can either refer to the main island or the entire destination. Commonly referred to as The Islands of Tahiti, French Polynesia is a collection of 118 islands and atolls scattered across an impressive nautical surface area the size of Western Europe. Still, these tiny islands—many of which remain uninhabited—make up a total landmass of only 1,600 square miles (4,100 sq. km).
Papeete, based on Tahiti, is a vibrant and multicultural city with busy boulevards and a bustling harbor. The downtown municipal market, Le Marché, is an exciting place to purchase all things Tahiti including vanilla beans, monoi oil and colorful pareos. To live like a local, head to Vai’ete Square after sunset. This waterfront promenade comes to life at night when gourmet food trucks, Les Roulottes, open their windows to serve a range of affordable meals including Chinese food, French crépes, steak frites, fresh fish and pizza.
I am really hoping Kelli will see Humpback whales, since they visit Hawaiian waters each year from November to May with the peak of the season being from January to March.
The Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary was created by Congress in 1992 to protect humpback whales and their habitat in Hawai`i. The sanctuary, which lies within the shallow (less than 600 feet), warm waters surrounding the main Hawaiian Islands, constitutes one of the world’s most important humpback whale habitats.
Through education, outreach, research and resource protection activities, the sanctuary strives to protect humpback whales and their habitat in Hawai`i.
Humpback whales, now an endgangered species, were plentiful in oceans worldwide before the global population was depleted by commercial whaling at the start of the 20th century. In 1993 it was estimated that there were 6,000 whales in the North Pacific Ocean, and that 4,000 of those came to Hawaiʻi. Through an international ban on commercial whaling and protections under the Endangered Species Act and the Marine Mammal Protection Act, the North Pacific humpback whale population now numbers more than 21,000. The population of humpback whales that uses Hawaiʻi’s waters as their principle wintering ground is likely more than 10,000 animals. This number is based on a comprehensive research effort that occurred between 2004 and 2006 that estimated the population at approximately 10,000 animals, and the likelihood that the population is still increasing at some unknown rate.
The North Pacific stock of humpback whales feed during the summer in northern waters (between approximate latitudes of 40-75° N). The cool, nutrient rich waters around Alaska provide ideal feeding locations. Humpback whales have plate-like bristles known as baleen in their mouth instead of teeth. They feed on krill and small schooling fishes, such as capelin and herring. A variety of feeding methods are used including bubble net feeding and lunge feeding. Humpbacks rarely feed in their wintering areas and it is not known if they feed along their migratory routes.
Hawai‘i is the only state in the United States where humpback whales mate, calve, and nurse their young.
mother and calf humpback
Humpbacks may find Hawai‘i suitable because of the warm waters, the underwater visibility, the variety of ocean depths, and the lack of natural predators. Mothers can be seen breaching alongside their calves and males can be seen competing with one another for females in fierce head-to-head battles.