Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Papetee was about a 10 minute drive from our hotel. Our driver dropped us off at a boat dock area, where we immediately snapped some photos.

The Vaima shopping center, which we later checked out, was home to the islands more "upscale" shopping. In my travel book, it mentioned that a lot of the French vacationers shop here. The most popular item for purchase on all the islands of French Polynesia were black pearls. Throughout the trip, we overheard people talking about scoping out the best deals and spending thousands of dollars on them. Fortunately, I am not a big fan of pearls, so this was not at all tempting for me. Although it was still fun to look.

As were were out and about walking, we came upon this beautiful church, the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception.

The inside has gorgeous stained glass and was very big and open. From the church, we made our way to the municipal market, Tahiti's open air shopping market. One can buy many different things there: flowers, fish, fruit, jewelry, clothing, many handmade items, and lucky for us...lunch! An early one, in our case."Snacks" are what many Polynesians feast on for lunch and there were snack bars all throughout the municipal market. What kind of snacks do they eat? Well, mostly sandwiches. They make sandwiches out of crusty french baguettes and put a variety of different meats on them. You see people just walking around munching on a big, long, crusty sandwich. Nate and I chose a poisson cru sandwich, which simply means "fish". Our sandwich was filled with rich crab meat. Yum!
After lunch we browsed around in the market for quite awhile. We were on the hunt for some "fun" wedding rings, as we had leftour real, valuable rings at home. Mine wasn't so hard to come by, but finding a ring to fit a man's finger was another thing entirely. I think we looked in every little shop selling jewelry twice before we found something that would work. In addition to a ring, Nate bought a shark's tooth necklace...very islandy.

The shopping took it out of us, so we stopped in at a snack bar along the street to have a nice, cold beer. We decided to try Hinano, Tahiti's local beer. I'm no beer conoseur, but it tasted good to me! :) While we were hanging out, we got the inspiration to take a picture of our newly purchased wedding rings atop our cold beers.
We also did a walking tour of the city, as outlined by our Frommer's book. All in all, it wasn't that impressive. By that point my feet hurt and I was really tired, so maybe that had a bit to do with my opinion, but the destinations it took us to were just okay. We were trying to burn some time, as our shuttle wasn't picking us up until later in the afternoon. We decided to grab another bite to eat, as our shared sandwich had worn off. We stopped at a little restaurant and split a very tasty salad. Honestly, most of the things we ate on the honeymoon were relatively fresh and healthy. Well, besides the desserts. :) But more on that later...



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