Mo’orea, French Polynesia (Southern Pacific) – September 2020

September 6 to 12th, 2020

This Conscience Bleue trip took us to the warm waters of Mo’orea, French Polynesia, where we encountered wild humpback whales. French Polynesia’s borders were open and allowed foreigners in its territory upon presentation of a negative covid test before departure and another one 4 days after arrival on site.

Each year, humpback whales migrate from the freezing Antarctic waters to the tropical waters where they rest, encounter mates and nurse their young. We spent every day out at sea with the local operator Ocean Addict, whose approach to wildlife is respectful and who were very accommodating to us. Humpback males’ songs resonated from all corners of the ocean while we trained in freediving. The mothers with their hungry, milking calf were never really far, sometimes accompanied by a new partner. We couldn’t have dreamt of a better freediving playground – cradled by a gentle ground swell to the sound of crackling corals and humpback whales’ unbelievable songs. In fact, the sound of their song becoming clearer as one moves away from the surface and kicks down towards the depth was a fantastic motivation to overcome some fear of depth. One timely moment of mutuality happened when two adult-sized humpack whales slowly swam from the depth and scanned us tiny little humans at the surface, vertically positioned just a few meters in front of us with their pectoral fins wide open.

Small and large sharks, pilot whales, spinner dolphins, turtles, rays, algae and fish of all kinds were observed too. We had so much to be grateful for in water and on land.

Thank you Mother Nature for spoiling us so.