Heading for Tahiti with the ATR 42-600S
On 9 October 2019, ATR officially launched the ATR 42-600S. S for STOL, or Short Take-Off and Landing, the new variant able to take off and land on runways a mere 800 metres long. Air Tahiti will be the first airline to operate this new version. A great opportunity to indulge in a virtual flight over French Polynesia, a chain of heavenly islands where nature abounds, scattered across the Pacific Ocean.
Bringing islands and people closer together
Comprising five groups of islands (the Society Islands archipelago, the Tuamotu Archipelago, the Gambier Islands, the Marquesas Islands and the Austral Islands), French Polynesia includes 118 islands dispersed over an expanse of over four million square kilometres at the heart of the South Pacific. You would need to travel some 6,000 km to reach the Australian coast, and 7,000 km to get to America! This is isolated, fragmented territory that is sparsely populated… and yet it is home to one of the richest natural environments in the world.
Tahiti, the largest and most populous island (part of the Society Islands, 183,000 inhabitants), houses the capital, Papeete, as well as French Polynesia’s only international airport. Although tourism is the country’s primary economic resource, the specific challenges faced by this dispersed territory mean that reliable inter-island air connections, adapted to the local topography, are absolutely essential. To prove the point, Into life invites you on board for a quick reconnaissance flight!
8 unmissable experiences in Tahiti and its islands
Rangiroa and Reef Island
Just a 1-hour flight from Papeete, at the heart of the Tuamotu Archipelago, Rangiroa is one of the largest atolls in the world and one of Polynesia’s most prised dive spots. Reef Island is found here – a coral reef shaped by erosion, reaching a height of up to two metres in some places, forming fabulous natural swimming pools… A labyrinth of coral in which to unwind and get away from it all.
Swim with whales and dolphins
From July to October, impressive humpback whales can be seen frolicking in the waters not far from the coastlines of Moorea and Tahiti, as well as in the Austral Islands. Spinner dolphins, easily recognisable by their characteristic long, thin snouts, are present all year round, just like the blacktip reef sharks that may send a shiver down your spine!
By adding two ATR 42-600S aircraft to its fleet, Air Tahiti aims to provide better inter-island connections throughout its territory, a great way of bringing us all a step closer to paradise!