A clear candidate for ‘Paradise on earth’ is Tahiti’s little sister island Moorea. It’s a passionate heart shaped island with eight volcanic peaks in a sleeping beauty landscape with all the magic you would expect from a fairytale existence. Imagine Hawaii before it became too popular. And surrounding the heart is a protective barrier reef. Yes, it’s enchanting and is easily deserving of its reputation as French Polynesia’s ‘magical island’.
Undisturbed island serenity on a vanilla-smelling Tahitian islet. It sounds good, it smells good and you can bet your bottom dollar it’ll do you good.
Not sure where to take your next tropical trip? While other other destinations offer sun, sand and clear blue water, The Islands of Tahiti are one of the few destinations that allow you to be embraced by mana - the life-force and spirit of the Polynesian people. The people, lifestyle and culture of Tahiti make set it apart from other destinations of its kind. Don't let a strict time limit stop you, it's possible to cram a whole lotta food, culture and relaxation into even the shortest visit to The Islands of Tahiti. With a little preparation and my Top Five, you'll be well on your way to making sure you hit all the hot spots on your visit.
The Islands of Tahiti is made up of 118 Islands, 67 of them habited and we got to explore just 2! This guide takes you a little deeper into Tahiti and Huahine to give you a few more ideas on what you can see and do and how you can feel and experience the Mana of this amazing place. Each Island provides a different experience and while you might find palm trees and blue blue water everywhere you will find each Island has a unique feel and focus for you to explore.
Exploring the Islands of Tahiti started in Papeete, looking for some of the key arts and cultural spots. We arrived via Air Tahiti Nui, a very comfortable flight with very modern equipment to not only watch some movies but also learning about the Islands of Tahiti. Its a very peaceful 5 hours from Auckland for me. Tahiti is the largest of the Islands and boasts waterfalls, lagoons, extinct volcanoes and a huge variety of festivals and are cultural destinations. We made it our aim, with the help of Tahiti tourisme to find some of the well known as well as lesser known spots.
Huahine is a hidden gem in the the cluster of Islands that makes up the Islands of Tahiti. A quick 30 minute flight by Air Tahiti from the main Island Tahiti brings you to a tropical paradise a world of difference from the busy Islands. Throughout the Islands you will experience the Mana or lifeforce and spirit of Polynesians but on this beautiful Island you feel it strongly. With a tiny population, lush green hills, magical blue water, incredible archeological history, beautiful pearls, warm and friendly people this Island is full of little gems to discover.
Take a short flight from Tahiti to what locals will tell you is their choice of destination. Huahine (pronounced hoo-a-heeny) will give you a real taste of island life and energise you with 'Mana' from the welcoming locals and natural landscape.Huahine may be small in size but it has plenty to do—you will wish you could stay longer, and I recommend that you do! It holds an authentic island life that makes living at a slower pace so darn appealing; you will feel uplifted with 'Mana' at every turn.
Spend a couple of days exploring the main island of Tahiti and you won’t leave disappointed. Papeete is full to the brim with cultural stops to keep your itinerary full, and this is only scratching the surface.
Connected by the essence of Mana, the fundamental spirit to embrace, The Islands of Tahiti are bound to leave you feeling relaxed, refreshed and most of all, even more connected than ever before. Unlike any other place on Earth, The Islands of Tahiti seem to have an energy that flows from its people and culture and beyond to the diverse range of landscapes. Nowhere else on the planet will you get to experience such a varied range of landscapes and activities that are bound to have you coming back time and time again. The essence of Mana is certainly prominent on the island of Rangiroa. We witnessed the friendly nature of the locals, raw beauty of the lagoon and appreciated the specialised training, commitment and tradition involved in the regions pearl farming whilst visiting the atoll - All intertwined by Mana. Here's my visual guide to exploring Rangiroa - The largest atoll in the Tuamotus.
Many who travel often fail to embody the culture and lifestyle of a destination and really reflect genuinely and meaningfully during their experience. The Islands of Tahiti manage to break down those barriers and cast aside those inhibitions we sometimes face whilst travelling abroad. The Islands of Tahiti let you travel in such a way that you can’t help but feel connected to the culture, the lifestyle and sincerely feel like you’ve escaped the worries of the world. In Tahiti, this interconnection is known as Mana - the spirit to embrace. Here's my guide to exploring Tahiti in a day...
Tahiti: A world where entrenched Polynesian culture collides with the added flair of French sophistication. A land where the wild mountainous landscapes appear to plunge into the most unbelievably surreal coloured waters. Black sand beaches hug the coastline while valleys and mountainsides filled with towering waterfalls provide the most dramatic backdrop you've ever appreciated. Undoubtedly remote, The Islands of Tahiti are sure to leave you speechless from the moment you arrive, all while allowing you to disengage from the worries of the world - Welcome to Tahiti.
With over 118 islands in French Polynesia, there are a plethora of incredible beaches to explore. The island of Tahiti itself has some of the best black sand beaches in the Pacific, as well as some stunning paradisiacal stretches of white sand to feed your desire for variety. Here's a guide to some of my favourite beaches on the island of Tahiti.
It's no question that Tahiti's "Mana" has embraced the hearts of travellers worldwide. Mana is the lifeforce and spirit of Polynesians. It is a single word that evokes the people, culture and lifestyle of Tahiti, and it's what makes people come back over and over to Tahiti. On my recent visit to the Islands of Tahiti, however, I found that the food made such a lasting impression as well. A simplistic definition of Tahitian food is "Polynesian food with French influence" but it's much more than that. It's the eating experience, combined with the natural ingredients and people you eat with (and people who prepare the food) that makes eating in Tahiti quite a memorable experience.
Along with the new year comes fresh resolutions and bucket lists. If Tahiti is in your bucket list to visit this year, I can't blame you. "Mana" , the Tahitian life force and spirit connecting all living things, is also the same element that has charmed thousands of visitors (myself included). And while being embraced by Mana, I also got to try a lot of Tahitian food. You need not worry about losing your healthy lifestyle resolutions as I discovered that in Tahiti, there are many many ways to eat healthy. Talk about hitting two resolutions in one trip!
They say that you have to taste a culture in order to understand it. Fortunately for me, Tahiti's food offers a lot of active participation and experience rather than just the usual sit-down-and-eat type of meal. I recently visited The Islands of Tahiti (Papeete and Moorea) and sampled a lot of Tahitian food. I left Tahiti with not only with a very full stomach, but with a deeper appreciation and understanding of Tahitian food and way of life. Here are my top Tahitian food experiences should you ever find yourself in the stunning islands of Tahiti!
A world-renowned diving location known for its abundance of underwater life, Rangiroa is the largest atoll in the Tuamotus and attracts travellers from all over the globe. For those with an urge to explore and wanting a break from their underwater adventures, there is still plenty to see and do on land. Here's a guide to help you embrace Mana, the life force and spirit of Polynesia, and enjoy the best of Rangiroa out of the water.
On an island where cascading waterfalls and calm natural springs litter the landscape, the immense selection of natural sights to explore can be overwhelming. Here are a few of my favourite spots to visit along the coastline and inland valleys of Tahiti's main island to ensure you make the most of your visit.
Ever wondered what the eff you can eat on The Islands of Tahiti? Wonder no more! From fancy French fare to bitchin' street food and something to suit all budgets, Tahiti has proven that it's not just a feast for the eyes. Check out my top vegan eats during my travels to Tahiti + Moorea with the Townske + Tahiti Tourisme team flying with Air Tahiti Nui!
There's no denying that eating is dope (especially on holidays) but sometimes it's fun to delve a little deeper and see how the grub gets to your plate. Mana is the life-force and spirit of Polynesia - encapsulating the people, lifestyle and culture of Tahiti and her people, something that is clearly exhibited by the passion Tahitians have for food and fresh produce. Transform your trip to The Islands of Tahiti into a truly immersive food experience and allow yourself to be embraced by mana (and delicious food).
Tahiti Tourisme interviewed Angie Kelly, a travel writer who went several times to Tahiti, to give you a better idea about our islands.