Author Herman Melville summed up Nuku Hiva as a "country that no description could fit the beauty." Melville deserted his ship, the whaler Acushnet in the Marquesas and for a short time lived among the Typee people. At 329 square km (127 square mi), this is the largest of the Marquesas Islands; it was also the inspiration for two of Melville's novels, Typee and its sequel Omoo.With towering mountains, eight magnificent harbors, and one of the world's highest waterfalls, Nuku Hiva is richly blessed. View more
The romance of the seas, small ship sizes and intimate atmosphere, Silversea has long been a leader in the ultra-luxury market. Travelling to both iconic and secluded ports, Silversea’s award-winning itineraries inspire wanderlust and exploration. With over 900 destinations, longer port stays and more late-night departures than ever before, even the savviest traveler will find something new. A butler for every suite, a complimentary in-suite bar stocked with your preferences, all-inclusive exquisite dining, award-winning onboard entertainment and an unparalleled space to guest ratio all contribute to the Silversea experience. Not forgetting our famed Italian hospitality, where new faces become old friends. Bienvenuti a bordo.
Nuku Hiva is the main island in the northern archipelago of the Marquesas, with the town of Taiohae its administrative and economic centre. Rising vertically from the ocean floor, the emerald-green Marquesas form one of the most spectacular and remote archipelago in French Polynesia. A mountain range dominated by Mt. Tekao (4,015 feet /1,224 metres) runs the length of the desert lands. As the island is without protective coral reefs or lagoons, it lacks flat coastal surfaces, making it almost impossible to build roads along the coasts to connect one valley to another. A rare exception is Taiohae Bay, which offers safe anchorage for all ships.
The town of Taiohae, the administrative capital of the Marquesas Islands, is located on the shores of Taiohae Bay. In fact, it lies in the centre of a volcanic crater, half of which collapsed into the ocean creating the bay.
The first humans arrived in Nuku Hiva in 150 BC. There was a development period that lasted until 1100 AD. Many stone monuments were built between 1100 and 1400 AD, and it was during this period that artisans began what later became their famous sculpting of tikis found in the Taipivai Valley.
The Catholic Church began proselytizing the people of Nuku Hiva in earnest in 1839, encouraged by France's annexation of the island in 1842. The Taiohae Cathedral was built in 1974 and is the largest church in the Marquesas.