Sail away to paradise – on a ship carrying bulldozers and brake pads


Working ship: The Aranui 5 (Picture: Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)

It’s a tropical cruise with a difference – because, as well as other passengers, you’ll be sailing along with dried coconut meat, brake pads and even bulldozers.

The ship is Aranui 5, which leaves Papeete in Tahiti, French Polynesia, every three weeks on a 2,200-mile round trip to visit the Tuamotu islands, Bora Bora, and the world’s most remote archipelago, the Marquesas.


Desert island: The tiny Fatu Hiva (Picture: Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)

As the 250 passengers lap up the lagoons, corals, volcanoes, cliffs and waterfalls, the ‘freighter to paradise’ also provides a lifeline to the inhabitants of the exotic locations.


Meal time: The restaurant (Picture: Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)

On board, guests can enjoy a swimming pool, fitness room, spa, bars, restaurant, lounges, library and computer room. Ashore, they can meet the welcoming locals, visit beaches or go on 4×4 off-road tours, helicopter flights or horse riding.


Relaxing: The lounge (Picture: Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)

In the new 2018 brochure, there is a ten per cent discount on some of the 14-day cruises including January 13, March 29 and June 12. There’s also ten per cent off for over-60s on the October 2 departure.


Balcony: A superior deluxe room (Picture: Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime)

Prices, which include expert lecturers and guides, start from 4,089 euros (around £3,500/$4,400) a person, based on two sharing a standard double room.

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