Sand, sea and vines in French PolynesiaRangiroa Island, French Polynesia
White sand under foot, turquoise blue ocean as far as the eye can see, coconut trees swaying in the breeze, surrounded by rows of vines. Wait, what? Yep, you heard us right. Dominique Auroy’s Vin de Tahiti, on the atoll of Rangiroa in French Polynesia, is home to the world’s only coral winery.
The vines are grown on a small motu (islet) at the end of a coral road a few minutes by boat from the town of Avatoru, which is a one-hour flight from Tahiti. The vineyard was created after years of research in order to understand the soil of the atoll and how the salty water would affect the grapes. Since 2010 they have also taken an organic approach to production.
Our pick: try the Blanc de Corail, a delicate white wine with notes of mango, pineapple and candied banana; or the Rosé Nacarat with melon, raspberry and redcurrant aromas. A visit to the vineyard is by tour only, but in this part of the world, the journey is all part of the experience.
- Strolling among the vines all the way down to the beach, which overlooks a gorgeous turquoise lagoon
- Visiting during harvest season, when you can see the grapes being transported from the vineyard back to winery on a canoe
- Tasting the delicious tipples
- The vineyard is only open for tours, so no spontaneous drop-ins
It is a one-hour flight from Tahiti to Rangiroa Island. From here, day trips can be arranged to see the vineyard, including a tour of the vines and a tasting at the wine cellar.
Tour prices start from US$19.