Tahiti is the largest (1,048 sq km) of the islands of French Polynesia, as well as being the beating heart of the region. The capital of French Polynesia, the city of Papeete, is located here, and about 70% of the population of all the archipelagos of French Polynesia lives on this island.
The island of Tahiti is an island of volcanic origin. And it is made up of two parts, Tahiti Nui and Tahiti Iti, connected together by a narrow isthmus. The island is rich in mountains, here is also the highest mountain in French Polynesia, Monte Orohena, which reaches 2,241 meters in height.
The inhabitants of Tahiti are concentrated along the narrow coastal strip. The wild mountains of the interior do not allow settlements. The interior of the island is still today of a wild beauty made of majestic peaks covered with vegetation and waterfalls. While the coast is characterized by sandy beaches, rarely white coral sand, but more often black volcanic sand.
Tahiti was discovered by European navigators in 1767. In that year it was the Englishman Samuel Wallis to sight and land as the first European on the island. He reported enthusiastic comments because of the peaceful and free nature of the inhabitants, the mild climate, and the beauty of nature.
Subsequent expeditions also had the same enthusiastic experiences. Frenchman Louis de Bouganville arrived there in 1768, and Englishman James Cook on three successive trips. All these European expeditions contributed to the birth of the myth of the islands of the South Seas. A myth that is still largely present in the collective imagination.
In front of the western coast of Tahiti is the island of Moorea which is about ten kilometers away. From this side of the island, which is where Faaa International Airport and the city of Papeete are located, there are beautiful sunsets that can be admired over Moorea and its mountains. The Tetiaroa coral atoll which was privately owned by the American actor Marlon Brando until his death is located about 50 km north of Tahiti.
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