Just returned yesterday from the Wind Song in Tahiti. It was a great cruise. Different from the large ships. Very relaxing and easy to get to know your fellow passengers. As to the weather, expect it to be hot and humid, around 80-85 degrees but it feels like 90-95. March is part of the rainy season and they do get lots of it. As for rough seas, we didn't experience any but you're more likely to get wind with the rain. The ship has decent stabilizers but take along the seasickness remedy of your choice. Even though we didn't experience any problems, there were plenty of people wearing patches and wrist bands. There was some rolling but not anything unbearable.
As for what to do on the islands, we just chose from the available excursions, but many people rented little europecars and explored the islands on their own. The island highlight bus tours were very informative. The one excursion not to be missed is the shark and ray feeding/snorkeling tour at Bora Bora. The fish were incredible. This excursion also drops you off at a private motu for a barbecue provided by the ship.
I hope you're not expecting alot of shipboard activities, like on a big ship, because you will be dissapointed. Most people seemed to be content lounging on deck, reading, etc. If you like water sports, you'll find plenty to do including SCUBA. There was a pretty extensive program for divers (I'm not one of them, but they looked like they were having a great time).
Food was very good but not spectacular. Make sure you try some of the local food on the islands...a little bit tropical, a little bit French. It was fun to experiment.
I can't tell you anything about Tahiti.
Never been there, but I have been on two Windstar Caribbean cruises. There is no cruise experience on the planet that even comes close, in my opinion, and I have been on 16 cruises on most major cruise lines in the last 5 years. My wife and I learned to scuba dive while onboard Windstar, our first dive was off Montserrat in '96. A few months later its volcano exploded, forcing the residents to evacuate. On our second Windstar cruise 10 months later, we sailed very slowly past Montserrat at night, as all passengers crowded the deck to watch the spectacular lava flows.
Everything about Windstar is first-rate. It was easily the best dining, best service, best itineraries, the best of everything I have experienced at sea. Most of our fellow passengers on both cruises had sailed Windstar before many times, and some would not sail on ANY other ships. I wouldn't be at all surprised if you come to the same conclusion after your trip with them.
Words simply can't describe the breathtaking beauty of their ships as the sails unfurl each evening when leaving port.
While I have experienced and enjoyed other cruise lines, there will always be a special place in my heart for Windstar. I am their biggest fan, and I know that someday soon I will be aboard again.
I really hope you will tell us about your cruise when you get back.
Hey, folks we've just been there, exactly like you.
We've sailed HAL for quite a few years and have been spoiled with large ships and suites/balconys.
We did the Windsong the week of 8/16 and it was quite an experience.
Have to tell you that we didn't like the very small stateroom but the rest of the trip was really great. The dinner menu was rather limited (compared to larger ships) but the open bridge was nice and the main reason you're going is to see the islands and I have to tell you that after 7 Southern Caribb cruises, we've NEVER seen anything as beautiful as the South Pacific.
You'll love the deck BBQ on Wed evening and the private island trip for a luncheon BBQ from Bora Bora is really unbelieveable. We've never seen anything as beautiful as that pvt island that's owned by Club Med and leased for the day by Windsong.
The flight was LONG. We went 1st class from StL to LAX and then business class on Air Tahiti and that was wonderful going over. The crew on the way back wasn't much!
Another thing you'll like is the last day at the "day room" of the Sheraton. We didn't know what to expect and it was fantastic!!! We checked into our own room with a huge bathroom and great a/c and TV that worked and a pool that is too beautiful....really a wonderful experience.
Would we do it again? Not for a 7 day trip. We might go again for a 14 day trip after we forget about how long 12 hours in the air really is.
Anyway, enjoy your trip. The crew is outstanding and will be calling you by name by the 2nd day out.
I'd send pix but have never been on this site before. Any questions, please just ask.
We live in St. Louis, MO and have pretty much cruise experience.
Have FUN..... John & Judy
We live in St Joseph MO. and are thinking of taking the Nice/Rome trip next summer.We have taken several cruises with larger ships and I am very nervous about getting much less than I bargained for....I understand we will not be in our room much but would it be worth it to get the owner's cabin? Is there just one owner's cabin? We are plannning to stay 3 or 4 days in Rome at the end of our cruise. Can you tell me anything negative about the ship,crew or etc.Thank you,Kristy
we will also be flying out of st. louis, what time was your flight out and how long did you have in la before reboarding....?
We have put in for two extra nights after the cruise at the sheraton, however they said it takes about a week before we know if there will be returning flights available. We read your reply and thought about the 12 hrs and thought the two extra nights would be nice... it would also give us more time to see Paptee....
I'm glad to see these messages. We're sailing on the Wind Song on Jan. 3. and doing 3 days pre-cruise on Tahiti, staying at the Sheraton. We'll also have the post cruise day there. I've been checking the Cruise Critic message boards, but there is rarely ever a new message posted. I just found this board and will check it often for more information regarding Tahiti and the Wind Song cruise. I too am counting the days.
SINCE YOU WILL BE HITTING THE WATERS FIRST, I WILL EXPECT A MESSAGE UPON YOUR RETURN ON HOW THE TRIP WENT AND WHAT TO DO WHILE IN PAPATEE AND HOW YOU LIKE THE SHERATON.......
IS THIS YOUR FIRST WINDSTAR CRUISE? TAKE CARE AND IF YOU FIND ANYOTHER INFORMATION BOARDS TO CHECK LET ME KNOW, I TOO AM LOOKING FOR MORE INFORMATION ON TAHITI.
HAVE A GREAT TRIP AND WILL BE LOOKING FORWARD TO HEARING FROM YOU.
I'LL GET BACK TO YOU ON THE WEBSITE I FOUND ON TAHITI ON THINGS TO DO... I JUST GOT A BOOK IN THE MAIL ON THE ISLANDS AND IT HAS LOTS OF INFORMATION... I WILL LOOK AT IT AND GET BACK TO YOU ON THE SITE
We just got back from the Tahiti trip. The Sheraton was much better then I expected it to be. We had a beautiful view of the bay, the rooms were very nice and large, the pool is fantastic. We took Le Truck downtown and did some shopping. If you go downtown make sure to go to the market. Some friends took the photo safari and were disappointed after seeing the beauty of the other islands. I think that there was an around the island type tour offered too, but most people either went downtown or just vegged out around the pool. The hotel offers a water shuttle downtown for $5. Le Truck was about a tenth of that and gave us some local color. The hotel is about 3 miles from downtown, so one couple walked back.
I can understand your excitement about your upcoming trip. It was our second time doing this trip on the Windsong and this trip was just as great as the one six years ago.
We didn't really shop at the market for anything but they have really good bargains on pareos. It is mostly a produce, meat, fish and flower market, but there are also a lot of souvineer type items. There are a couple pastry kiosks there and we tried some of their wares which were great.
We had lunch at an open air streetside cafe about a block to the right as you come off the ship in Papeete. They have good beer and sandwiches and a lot of locals seemed to be there. For dinner we ate at the Sheraton at a very nice patio garden type place right next to the bar.
The favorite tour that we took was the 4 wheel drive safari on Bora Bora. We took it on our previous trip and it was just as good this time. The last stop is at Bloody Mary's bar and restaurant. Some people from the ship returned to Bloody Mary's for dinner and I got mixed reports, some loved it and some thought it was over rated. The beach BarBQ that the ship has on Monday at Motu Tapu is terrific. Be sure to go for a banana boat ride. There is a shark feeding/snorkeling/stingray feeding tour on Bora Bora which is very good. We found the snorkeling on Huahine and Moorea also to be quite good. On Moorea they take you to a motu where the stingrays come right up to you as you wade into the water and you can pet them. Some friends also saw whales and dolphins on their snorkeling tour. I saw a whale as the ship was leaving Moorea.
My wife and I will be on the same cruise-- November 22 through November 29. We are looking forward to this.
This will be my second trip to Tahiti. The first time, I was in my early 20s and camped on the beach in Bora Bora for $9 per night. This time around, I will spend a little more money and travel in Windsong Style.
There has been some information trickling in that this ship has sustained a major fire and passengers are being or have been evacuated. I pray for those onboard both passengers and crew and hope that our CM posters here are also safe.
Community Staff Leader
We had great time. As you probably already know the wingsong had a fire on board the Sunday after we got off the ship. I heard they will be bring in the windstar ship in January to replace the windsong. We went on the safari adventure the first day in Bora Bora and that was great you get to see the whole island and you go to four locations on the top of the mountains and the views are unbelievable. The only problem we ran into that day was, they had the beach bbq on there private island.We had arrived back to ship from our safari trip at 12:30 . We had to wait for a zodica boat to take us there. We did not get over to the island till 1:30, by that time they had start puting the food away. It was just poor planning on their part. We also took the the snorkel, motu beach adventure in moorea.We really enjoyed that also.
And food was great on the island. You also get to swim with stingrays. The only thing I would of done different on this trip would be to stay a day or two in Tahiti before the cruise to wind down before going.
Hope You Have Great Time, Wish we were going again.
Theresa & Walt
You know by now the Song has been taken out of service. But we've been on all three sisters and recently to Tahiti two weeks before the Song caught fire. It's an incredible trip, better than I could have imagined and best by far of all we have had. March is end of rainy season, we believe.
have you got a new date on your trip as of yet? The fire did cause some problems for others but it sounds like Windstar is working with you guys to keep you happy. we are still on for the March 28th trip and we are counting down the days. Sine all the email information we have been getting, and since we are traveling from the midwest, we are leaving a day earlier to stay in LA for the night, than fly over the next day so we will be well rested for our trip.....
I hope everything has been working out for you in rearranging your plans.
We took your advice, since we have already booked two nights after the cruise at the Sheraton, we went ahead and booked out flight out from St. Louis to Los Angeles the day before, we will than get our rest and leave LAX the following day at 100pm, at least that way we wont be too tired to enjoy our first day out...... Thanks for a advice..... Our count down continues.
By now, you know the Wind Spirit has been repositioned to take on the schedule of the Wind Song, since it was not economical to repair her and return her to service. (These ships are fully SOLAS compliant, which probably accounted for the engine-room fire not causing anyone- passengers or crew- any harm.)
March is the end of the rainy season- though in this area, you can expect rain showers any time. Even in the rains season, these are often brief afternoon showers or night rains. It is warm, but the sea breezes are a tonic, and the ship's interior is of course air conditioned. We took light raingear (it is too warm for anything more...) and an umbrella will work well.
We love the size, intimacy and friendliness of these ships. They have a great waterports offering (snorkel, sailboard, banana boats, waterski, "resort course" SCUBA training and limited dives, and full SCUBA for certified divers).
On land you will have the opportunity to shop for some lovely local handcrafts. On Bora Bora, we were ripped off when we purchased an item (a beautiful hand-carved black pearl shell) and had it wrapped- upon unwrapping at home, the item had been subsituted (with a much cheaper, plain, uncarved shell). So, be aware and verify all purchases and packing are what they are supposed to be.
All who had been RAVED and I expected it couldn't live up to the hype. It FAR SURPASSED it!
Windstar cruises are like very large yachts. Very cool. Sad to say, the WINDSONG was damaged in a fire svereal weeks after our trip and later scuttled. A very sad loss. Now there are onlytwo sisters of that size.
I can't predict the weather - there IS a rainy season but I'm unsure when that is.
I would suggest you take all possible snorkle and/or beach trips - do the stingray journey - it's a blast. Lots of laughter.
There's little if any rolling and not too much travel, actually, since from island to island isn't that far. Don't worry.
Of maybe 20 cruises or charters, this one was top 2 or 3. It's that good!