Mare, a raised coral atoll, is part of the Loyalty Islands, an archipelago in the French overseas territory of New Caledonia.
Despite regular visits by cruise ships, Mare remains largely off the tourist track, which has helped maintain it as a tropical paradise. Palm trees overhang the crystal-clear waters surrounding the island, and Yejele Beach, with its pristine white sands, is a highlight.
A market selling local wares greets cruisers dockside. Thatched-roofed villages dot the island, and there is little in the way of traffic on the roads. Go for a wander, and take in the lovely views of the bay. The French-speaking locals, in their colourful dress, are always willing to return a smile and a "bonjour."
--By Giulio Saggin, Cruise Critic contributor