2011 Trips of the Year: Paddle Polynesia

Moorea     Photo: Photo by Image Source/Corbis

Moorea is one of the most beautiful islands in the world, a playground of jagged volcanic peaks and turquoise lagoons. The best way to explore it is in the unofficial local vehicle, an outrigger canoe. Tahiti Expeditions' Moorea Outrigger Expedition offers a nine-day circumnavigation, during which guests paddle 37 miles of bays and reefs in a six-person outrigger and can opt to dive and snorkel with dolphins, surf, or hike tropical valleys on the side. Nights are spent camping on white-sand beaches or lounging in five-star hotels (guests choose). On day seven, indulge in a traditional feast of fish, taro leaves, plantains, and fruit pudding, all steamed in a pit oven between hot rocks and woven mats. From $2,850; tahitiexpeditions.com.

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