(in the Gambier Archipelago)... The Floating Mountain
Personality: tempered, diversified, pearl producing
Main island in the Gambier Archipelago, Mangareva (and its sisters Aukena, Akamaru, Taravai) feature a summary of Polynesian scenery: mountains dropping into lagoons, white sand beaches, sun drenched motus.
At a glance: Mangareva is the largest of the 14 mountainous islands of the Gambier Archipelago. Its main village, Rikitea, is located near a huge lagoon at the foot of the mountain, and features an abundant vegetation of flowers, shrubs and fruit trees. At the end of its main street, Saint-Michel cathedral sticks out as a reminder of the important presence of the Catholic Church in the 18th and 19th centuries.
Climate is very pleasant and cooler than in Tahiti. The 1,100 inhabitants cultivate coffee, oranges and raise cattle. They also work in black pearl farms that made the reputation of the island and became its main resource. These black pearls are found in Tahiti and all over the world.
How to get there: the Totegegie airport is built on an islet in the Mangareva lagoon. Air Tahiti ensures regular 4-hour flights from Tahiti.