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Mark Moxon's Travel Writing

French Polynesia: Gambier Islands

Ile Mangareva
The distinctive silhouette of Île Mangareva of the Gambiers

The Gambier Islands are part of French Polynesia, the French-controlled area of paradise that comprises the following:

The Gambier lagoon is a classic atoll surrounding the inner Gambier Islands. An atoll (pronounced 'ah-toll', not 'ay-toll') is one of the archetypal natural phenomena in the Pacific, and is responsible for beautiful coral reef, motus and protected anchorages galore. The islands of the southwest Pacific are all volcanic in origin, being formed by the clash of the Pacific, Indian, Eurasian and Philippines tectonic plates; the clashes force magma up into the sea, which creates islands in the ocean, and with the perpetual drift of the plates, this has formed a string of islands from Pitcairn Island and the Gambiers in the east, to Indonesia in the west and Japan in the north.

Sunset over Ile Taravai
Sunset over Île Taravai