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''See [[French_Polynesia#References_.26_Publications|French Polynesia References & Publications]]''.
''See [[French_Polynesia#References|French Polynesia References & Publications]]''.

Latest revision as of 14:48, 21 August 2018

WorldSouth PacificFrench PolynesiaAustrals

The Austral Islands (French: Îles Australes) are the southernmost group of islands in French Polynesia in the South Pacific. Geographically, they consist of two separate archipelagos, namely in the northwest the Tupua'i islands (French: Îles Tubuaï) consisting of the Îles Maria, Rimatara, Moerai, Rurutu, Mataurai, Tubuai Island proper and Raivavae, and in the southeast the Bass Islands (French: Îles Basses) composed of the main island of Rapa Iti and the small Marotiri.

Inhabitants of the islands are known for their pandanus fibre weaving skills.

The two islands in the group most visited by cruising sailors are Raivavae and Mataurai, Tubuai. Visits to Rapa are uncommon but do occur and are quite worthwhile.


See each island for charts relating to the island.


The Australs have a cooler and milder climate than most of the rest of French Polynesia. Especially in Raivavae and more so in Rapa, winter night-time temperatures can be quite cold.

Sources for weather information: Also see French Polynesia Climate & Weather.

Currents & Tides


The prevailing winds through the group tend to more south-easterly than easterly, and so a route through the group might proceed as follows:

Depending on the amount of southerly component in the wind, a reach from Tubuai to Papeete in Tahiti to complete entry formalities may not be comfortable, and so a direct route from Raivavae may be chosen instead.

Stopping at Rapa will depend on the weather conditions -- strong or even moderately strong easterly winds can make the harbour and anchorage at Rapa untenable.


  • Raivavae (Port of entry)
  • Moerai, Rurutu (Port of entry)
  • Mataurai, Tubuai (Port of entry)
  • Rapa (note that Rapa is in fact part of the Bass Islands but they are often included with the Austral Islands as a single group).


There are no nets specific to the Austral Islands.

Also see World Cruiser's Nets.


See each island for notes relating to the island.


See French Polynesia Entrance Procedures.

Health & Security

Submit any health warnings/information and any security details here.


See each island.

Things to do Ashore

See individual islands.


Contact details of "Cruiser's Friends" that can be contacted for local information or assistance.


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)



See French Polynesia References & Publications.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

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