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"Rent/Borrow an Outrigger canoe!" Top 5 Page for this destination French Polynesia Things to Do Tip by easyoar

French Polynesia Things to Do: 79 reviews and 75 photos

  Rent/Borrow an Outrigger canoe!
by easyoar

These outrigger canoes are great fun to paddle about in. If you have ever been in a single scull (to the uninitiated, it is a very thin 'rowing' boat for just one person), this will feel very stable. On the other hand, if you haven't, you will have a good chance of turning one of these over! If you can't swim, definitely think twice about taking one of these out on the water!!! We were staying at the Hotel Hibiscus, and you could borrow these boats for free, so we borrowed this and headed over to the nearest Motu (a small uninhabited island).

Coming back, we hit a strong sidewind, and it made paddling in the direction I wanted to go very difficult as the outrigger was effectively braking the boat making it want to go in the same direction as the wind was. The only way I could get the boat back was to row it backwards (as a traditional row boat - but without any gate to hold the oar in place)
as I could get the oar almost horizontal this way and get more turning force in the water. It's worth being aware of anyway - I did get some very strange looks from the Polynesians as we came back in, as they all row them forwards (as I am doing in the picture!)!

If you don't have experience, make sure you don't take any cameras that would be 'allergic' to water in the boat with you, or anything that might sink should it suddenly find itself in the water! Don't try and swap positions in the canoe once you set out unless you exercise extreme caution, unless of course you don't mind a dip! You are very unlikely to roll it over the side of the rigger, but the other side has nothing to brace the boat.

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Apr 22, 2005
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