Tahiti, often called the "Queen of the Pacific," is appropriately crowned by a circle of majestic peaks. The island's mountainous interior shelters deep valleys, clear streams, high waterfalls and mysterious caves, all bathed in the green iridescence of Mother Nature's light. The wide, flat coastal lands, edged with a rugged coastline, are home to both fields of tropical flowers and most of the island's population. Papeete, meaning "water basket," was once a gathering place where Tahitians came to fill their calabashes with fresh water. Now the invigorating capital city and gateway of the territory, Papeete boasts vibrant markets, fine restaurants, pearl shops, clubs and boutiques.