French Polynesia

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Frenchv Polynesia

At the center of the South Pacific, the islands of Tahiti, Bora Bora, and Moorea are just a few of the islands that make up the archipelago of French Polynesia. Warm turquoise waters teeming with marine life, iconic overwater bungalows and delicious cuisine bursting with fresh tropical flavors are just some of the luxuries you can take pleasure in when you visit French Polynesia.

Tahiti

Tahiti waterfalls

Tahiti, the largest and best known of the Polynesian Society Islands, is home to the capital city Papeete and the international airport. Travelers to any of the other islands will likely spend at least a few hours here before moving on to the next destination, as it is the only international airport on the islands. Tahiti’s charm is in its mixture of Polynesian natural environment and modern cityscape. Mount Orohena, the largest mountain in Polynesia, is the perfect place to explore the natural wonders including the marvelous Tiarei waterfalls, Vaihiria Lake and Papeno’o valley. Take in the miles of coastal scenery, dramatic cliffs and serene beaches as you get to know this fabulous island. For a taste of a Polynesian style city, spend some time shopping at the popular Public Market, also called Le Marche. Here you will find stands filled with authentic hand made crafts, oils, vanilla, flowers and flavorful tropical fruits. Stop in the Paul Gauguin Museum to discover the Parisian artist best known for his depictions of French Polynesian way of life. The Botanical Garden adjacent to the museum features hundreds of lush tropical trees, plants and flowers, which highlight the best Tahiti has to offer.

Events in Tahiti range from Master Surfing competitions in winter and spring to the annual century old Heivā Festival in July; a popular celebration of Tahitian culture, dance, music and sports. This iconic event takes place over three weeks and is one of the best ways to taste, hear and see the strong Polynesian culture through traditional dance, costume, and music.

Moorea

InterContinental Moorea

Just a 45-minute ferry ride away is the French Polynesian isle of Moorea. The heart-shaped island surrounded by a shallow lagoon is the perfect romantic escape for a first or second honeymoon. Here, as well as in Bora Bora, is where you’ll find the iconic and romantic over-water bungalows set amidst the velvety green mountain backdrop. Moorea is a diver’s paradise due to the abundant marine life, shallow waters and lack of strong currents. Whether you choose to snorkel close to your resort or venture out on further into the sea, you will witness a diverse amount of sea life. Luxe Travel recommends staying at the InterContinental Resort in Moorea where you can swim with the dolphins at the Dolphin Center that is part of the resort’s lagoon.

In addition to the large amount of water activities in Moorea, don’t count out visiting inland of the island as well. Here you can tour pineapple plantations, discover splendid tall waterfalls and hike through the lush tropical rainforests and verdant green hills and mountainsides.

Bora Bora

Four Season Bora Bora Bungalows

Named by many the most romantic island in the world, Bora Bora is a short hour flight from Tahiti. Made up of many barrier islands surrounding the bigger island of Bora Bora, many of the resorts are located on these barrier islands. Imagine the over-water bungalows jetting out into the lagoon with views of Mount Otemanu decorating the endless blue sky. When choosing an overwater bungalow, take a look at the resort map. Some of the lesser priced bungalows are located in close proximity to one another and you can see into the other bungalow. The more secluded bungalows are located at the end of the pier. Pre-book the Canoe breakfast only available in the over-water bungalows. The staff will paddle up with a canoe with delight pastries, fresh fruit, and coffee.

The barrier islands around Bora Bora provide clear calm turquoise waters perfect for underwater exploration. Diving and snorkeling are popular here as is sailing and jet skiing. Experience a real thrill by partaking in a shark and ray feeding. Don’t worry however; the sharks are docile smaller sharks that are hand fed by your guide.

Cruise the French Polynesian Islands with Paul Gauguin cruises

Paul Gaugin French Polynesian Cruises

For an authentic experience including many of the French Polynesian islands have to offer, enjoy a cruise on one of the Paul Gauguin cruise ships. The ships is designed specifically for Tahiti and French Polynesia, giving you the best the islands have to offer along with authentic experience of local Tahitians who serve as entertainers and storytellers on board. Your itineraries include stops in Raiatea, Taha’a, Bora Bora and Moorea. Better yet, every stateroom has an ocean view and nearly 70% have balconies.

When to visit

December and January are the wettest months in the Polynesian Islands. The tropical destination averages in the upper 70’s year round with plenty of sunshine. If you want to catch the humpback whale migration, we recommend visiting in mid-august during their peak migration, however, whales start arriving in the area anywhere from June to December.

To experience all French Polynesia has to offer, contact the Luxe Travel team at 1-866-365-8747 or concierge@luxetravel.com. We will make sure you have the vacation of a lifetime.