The beautiful South Pacific Island of Tahiti is generally considered the epitome of paradise. After exploring the sights of the capital and largest city, Papeete be sure to travel around the island to admire the incredible coastline. To make your visit to Tahiti even better, we've compiled these fascinating trivia facts on the island.
Here are our top five Tahiti trivia facts.
Captain James Cook famously documented the east coast of Australia after viewing the transit of Venus in Tahiti. The esteemed navigator departed England in August 1768 and arrived at Tahiti in April 1769. Cook would return to Tahiti on several later voyages.
The other noted European captain to visit Tahiti was Captain Bligh, who sailed the Bounty from England in 1787 and docked at Tahiti in October 1788 after previously attempting to sail around Cape Horn. The aim of the expedition was to collect breadfruit from the South Pacific nation. The infamous mutiny took place shortly after the crew left Tahiti in April 1789.
Tahiti is the most famous of all the French Polynesian islands – in total there are six island groups within French Polynesia. Tahiti is part of the Society Island group. Other Society Islands include Bora Bora, Moorea and Tupai. It’s believed that Captain Cook dubbed the island after the Royal Society, the sponsor who funded the scientific survey of the islands.
The highest point in all of French Polynesia is Mont Orohena on Tahiti. This extinct volcano rises 2,241 metres above sea level, beating Australia’s Mount Kosciuszko by 13 metres. While many travellers visit Tahiti for the beaches and ocean-based pursuits, much of the interior is uninhabited lush rainforest.
As a semi-autonomous territory of France, all Tahitians are also citizens of the European nation. Both French and Tahitian are spoken. Independence from France is a topic of discussion but at the moment, the concept doesn’t have the full support of the local population.