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Swimming in the rivers of New Caledonia in the heat of a mid-summer day is right there next to paradise. The Riviere Bleue de Prony is on the famous GRNC-1 trek that goes from the southern end of Grande Terre all the way to Noumea (and some day all the way to the northern end of the island). This Olympic sized swimming hole (a full 70 meters long) is a perfect place to sploosh in and feel the sun-heat sizzle away. The water is clear and cool, and you can get yourself into the fastest part of the current and swim until your arms drop off without going anywhere. Kind of like an aquatic treadmill. Or you can jump into the bubbles and drift off in the champaign-like tickle. The pool is just a 10 minute pleasant walk from the Carenage Anchorage in Baie de Prony.
This sphere image was taken with an itsy-bitsy tiny little GoPro Hero3 Black edition camera stuck on the end of my walking stick and held over my head on the big rock you see when you look straight down.
New Caledonia is the closest South Pacific Island to Australia and New Zealand. It is a French Territory and although the official language is French the culture is a blend of Melanesian, European, Polynesian, Vietnamese, Chinese, Indonesian, and more. There is one large mountainous island called Grande Terre and 6 smaller islands - the three Loyalty Islands, Belep and the Isle of Pines.The islands are remarkably unpopulated and there are vast areas of wilderness. There are hundreds of kilometers of walking treks, camp grounds, more than 42 parks and reserves, and crystal clear rivers with sparkling waterfalls. Almost one third of the population is located in the capital city of Noumea. Nickel mining is the primary industry and is the major contributor to the high standard of living in the country. Grande Terre is surrounded by the second largest barrier reef in the world and the protected lagoon created by this barrier reef is the largest in the world. Listed as a World Heritage Site in 2008, the lagoon is 24,000 square kilometers and supports a diverse and luxuriant fauna of fish and invertebrates.The vibrant, clear and rich colors are one of the first things that visitors notice when they arrive. Noumea has a complete range of hotels, resorts, restaurants, and activities to welcome visitors.