A tropical hilltopview with the ocean at left and a green mountain at right

Welcome to the South Pacific

These short documentary films share personal stories from the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia

Exploring through the power of personal stories

This series delves into Marquesan culture by listening to the stories people want to tell about their lives. From one person to the next, these films explore tradition, colonization, loss, and joy in the Marquesas Islands of French Polynesia.

Episode One with Debora Kimitete: We visit the sacred site of Koueva on Nuku Hiva, a site dedicated to Debora’s husband, Lucien. He was critical to the resurgence of Marquesan culture, and he disappeared without a trace in an airplane crash in 2002.

Episode Two with Nicolas Haiti: On Nuku Hiva, the Haiti family runs a coconut drying oven that supports the livelihoods of 50 local families. As we watch each step of the process, Nicolas shows us that work, and a sense of home, can be found on the land itself.

Episode Three with Teiki Huukena: From his first tattoo at the age of 14, Teiki has been studying Patutiki (Marquesan tattoo), including the traditional symbols and their correct placement on the body. His own skin is a record of this journey.

Episode Four in Hapatoni: Tehautetua Tauhiro and his family are the cultural guardians of their valley. Through daily activities, art, and music, this generation of leaders demonstrates the power of strengthening culture by sharing it.

A view of some mountains in French Polynesia.

Agonizing over packing

Jun 21, 20181 min read
Preparation means packing. I’m away from home five months per year, and I’m still terrible at packing. Especially when I’ve spent the last three years working in the Arctic and now … heat!! I have agonized over sunscreen (reef safe), sun hats (tourist alert), rash guards (new for me), and bathing suits (ugh). I’ve finally…
Latte with South Pacific brochures

The news goes live

May 8, 20182 min read
It’s officially official because we are telling everyone about this project, starting this week. The news is out in my newsletter and across social media. Plus we have plane tickets. Most importantly, I have my first connection. For those of you who know my work, you know that I like to start with one connection,…
Sarah Kester, digital editor

Production team members

May 7, 20181 min read
Sarah Kester Digital EditorSarah is a digital editor and a freelance journalist based in Toronto. She graduated from the University of King’s College in Halifax – twice – where she took philosophy and creative writing before studying journalism. You can find her work in The Globe and Mail, Metro and Quill & Quire. Sarah is…
Sven Lindblad is the Founder of Lindblad Expeditions

Sponsors: Lindblad Expeditions – National Geographic

May 6, 20182 min read
Principal Sponsor Sven-Olof Lindblad, President, CEO, and Founder of Lindblad Expeditions, was born in Switzerland and traveled extensively with his father, renowned adventure-travel pioneer Lars-Eric Lindblad, who led some of the first non-scientific groups of travelers to Galapagos (1967) and Antarctica (1966). In 1979 he launched Special Expeditions, the adventure tourism company that became Lindblad…