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Tahiti Surfing, Surf Charter Tahiti

Before we get to the surf, a geography lesson: Saying you are going to "Tahiti" when you are going to the Society Islands is like saying you are going to the Big Island when you are going to the Hawaiian Islands. Tahiti is one island in the Society Islands group, like the Big Island of Hawaii is one island in the chain of Hawaiian Islands. The Society Islands include Tahiti, Moorea, Huahine, Tahaa, Raiatea and Bora Bora.

"Poly" means "many" and "nesia" means "islands" and just as Tahiti is one of many islands in the Society group, the Society archipelago is itself one of several island groups in French Polynesia which includes the Marquesas and the Tuamotus. The Tuamotu Atolls are to the north of the Society Islands and also hold a lot of fantasy tropical surf.

Okay now to the surf: Way back in 1963, Mike Hynson and Robert August passed through Tahiti on the search for The Endless Summer. They were greeted by incredulous natives who looked at their surfboards and told them, in pidgin-tinged French: "There are no waves in Tahiti!" - Wrong.

Go back to 1777 and it was in Tahiti where Captain Cook saw a native man riding waves in his canoe and made the first, and one of the best observations on surfing: "I could not help concluding that this man felt the most supreme pleasure while he was driven on so fast and so smoothly by the sea."

Exactly. Wave riding is just one of the pleasures that make Tahiti and her islands one of the supreme travel destinations on planet earth. There is very little argument that these volcanic mountains and coral atolls fringed with palm trees lining deep, crystal clear lagoons are among the most beautiful places in the world.

These islands are relentlessly spectacular and while the supreme pleasures are all around, they are not necessarily easy to get to. Mike and Robert had no problem surfing El Stumpo and Ins and Outs close to shore, but modern Tahiti doesn't reveal its pleasures easily. The variety of waves and continually changing conditions – not to mention the risk – require logistics that can be intimidating to say the least. Most of the breaks in French Polynesia are powerful barrier reef passes requiring a good boat and knowledgeable guide to make the most of a surf holiday.

WaterWays is allied with both land-based accommodations and surf guide options concentrating on the islands of Tahiti and Moorea that are packaged with equal measures of Polynesian aloha and Surf Stoke that combine to make Tahiti one of the most desirable travel destinations in the world.