They’re loading mangoes on UA Huka. We are waiting in the shade, watching crates of luscious fruit being transferred to a barge for the Aranui 5. We will follow, stepping from rocking barge to steady ship when the waves allow. The fruit is taking the place of the supplies that came with us: cement, sugar and other staples.
The Aranui herself is further up the deep ravine, tied to precipitous rocks, prevented from coming further by a hidden sandbank. There are bananas too, and copra, a coconut byproduct that appears to be good for everything – from building to feeding animals.
The Aranui is a cargo ship that is also a cruise ship, serving the Marquesa Islands, a lush Polynesian archipelago south of Tahiti. The ship is an intriguing mash up that looks a bit weird initially, but soon makes total sense.
Why not cut a cargo ship in half and add on some staterooms, sun decks and a swimming pool? Actually, it is far more sophisticated than that and, alongside a pair of on-board cranes and a cargo capacity of 3,000 tons, there are cabins, staterooms and suites, a restaurant, lounge, three bars, conference rooms and a tattoo studio.
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Source: Irish Times