Cruises from Mangareva
Over a thousand kilometres SE of Tahiti are the Gambier Islands, also a part of French Polynesia. Mangareva, the largest island of the archipelago, is home to most of the population and the centre of the region's pearl industry. Mangareva and a few small islands are contained within a lagoon 24 km across, bounded by a reef. Fish and shellfish within the lagoon sustain the population.
The lagoons of Mangareva are known for their pearl oysters, as large and famous pearl farms are located here. The simple pearl farms produce some of the world's highest-quality black pearls.