The Hokule'a and Hikianalia canoes are expected to depart Rangiroa Saturday morning.
As they prepare to leave the postcard perfect atoll, apprentice navigator Jenna Ishii described the visit.
"The first thing we saw at sunrise was the whole community gathering on the beach welcoming us in. They had a beautiful welcoming ceremony with the children there, with singing and dancing and food," said apprentice navigator Jenna Ishii.
"Since then we've been staying in this beautiful village of Avatoru and the families here have been so kind, allowing us to stay in their houses. They've caught fish and made meals for the crews every day," Ishii added.
When asked how to repay the Rangiroa community, leaders asked the crew members to simply connect with their kids.
"Yesterday we went to their elementary school and the kids had planned a whole performance for us. They had Hokule'a pictures everywhere and we taught them some songs and that was awesome. The whole crew got to go for a couple hours," said Ishii.
Ishii says the timing of the departure might be right.
"It's so tricky you can only come in and out at certain times of the day and the coolest thing about this atoll is it's a solar tide. It doesn't work with the moon and so it's different from any other places we've been. The current just rages and you got to follow the locals they said. From 8 to 11 Saturday we can leave," said Ishii.
Once the canoes leave, they will navigate to find the little island of Matatea.
From there, they will then travel to Pape'ete. Navigators hope to arrive in time for a 3 p.m. celebration planned. It has pretty much been declared a national holiday in Tahiti.