French Polynesia/Tahiti: Pointe Venus
Pointe Venus in the north of the island of Tahiti holds a stunning lighthouse and the monument to where Cook landed in 1789. Interestingly, he didn’t arrive here to explore the island but rather to observe the transit of Venus in front of Sun, a rare celestial event akin to solar eclipse. His ship was commissioned by Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge. Cook stayed here for many months and built a fortified camp, met with local chiefs and circumnavigated the island. Today, several monuments and the lighthouse commemorate that, and just beyond lies a stunning black sand beach.