Tuamotus, Huahinè and Tahiti absorb much of swell which piles up from the southern storm-belt and into French Polynesia. With 200 islands making up the region, numerous perfect set-ups have yet to be surfed - or go unsurfed most of the time. Tahiti's Teahupoo is the postcard wave, with flawless but brutal barrels. Other waves are reef passes and points, some miniature versions of Teahupoo, barrelling top-to-bottom. The majority of the swell is southerly, generated off New Zealand or coming up from the Antarctic, peaking in May and October (dry season). Despite receiving the same north swells which hit Hawaii between November and March they are much reduced in power. Trade winds blow consistently from the east, shifting slightly north in the wet season and southerly in the dry. Water temperatures are a tropical 25 to 27ºC or 77 to 81ºF year-round.