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Paul Gauguin Museum/Harrison W. Smith Botanical Gardens, Papeari, Tahiti

PK 5.12
Papeari , Tahiti
French Polynesia
Tel: 689 571 058's insider take:

The French post-Impressionist painter Paul Gauguin infamously spent 10 of the last 12 years of his life residing in Tahiti, specifically in Mataiea Village and Punaauia. His taste for young Polynesian beauties inspired several of his most significant artworks, including Fatata te Miti, Ia Orana Maria, and Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? Sadly, the museum that bears his name has but a handful of original sketches and block prints, and is pretty tawdry. You're better off visiting the adjacent botanical gardens established by American physics professor Harrison Smith in 1919; they'll at least give you an appreciation for the lush native landscape of palm, hibiscus, bamboo, and banana trees that Gauguin found so inspiring. Open daily 9–5.

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