Visit top-rated & must-see attractions. Lonely Planet will get you to the heart of Tahiti & French Polynesia, with amazing travel experiences and the best planning advice. Both aesthetically beautiful and inexplicitly raw, dark geometric patterns against bronzed skin have made a huge comeback all over French Polynesia. Tahiti Vacation Planning It’s one of the best places in the world to see these magnificent creatures. This gently curving black-sand beach is long, broad and fairly protected. You’ll need a good torch (flashlight) and waterproof shoes for the three-hour hike/swim. This is the best time to experience the gentle, unpretentiously sophisticated Polynesian culture at its fieriest. In pre-European times, this body art acted as a map to a person's social status and achievements, but today they are simply for beautification. The money used in Tahiti is called the “Pacific French Franc,” which is … Balm, dry, and less humid period between May and October is considered to be the best time to visit Tahiti. No part of this site may be reproduced without our written permission. I can unsubscribe any time using the unsubscribe link at the end of all emails. Read day by day travel plans, find out how to experience Mana, spend your time and budget wisely, and still discover the best attractions in the Islands of Tahiti. The South Pacific confounds even the savviest map buffs with its splatter of dots spread across the world's biggest ocean. Everybody loves Plage de Taharuu – locals taking the kids for a swim, tourists on day trips from Pape’ete and surfers catching some great waves. The third tube is the longest and darkest, and, at about 100m in, it divides: the left fork continues about 300m to an exit, while the right fork leads to a large cave, complete with lake and waterfall. On the northern half of Tahiti Iti towards Tautira, the coastline continues along from the Te Pari Cliffs another 10km or so through a second Fenua Aihere, till the paved road begins once again at Tautira village. Following are some travel tips for people who have never before been to Tahiti: Visitors from the United States and Canada do need a valid passport in order to enter Tahiti. A date with the ocean in Mo'orea, French Polynesia, The beautiful French Polynesian island you've never heard of, "Everyone belongs to the island" – exploring Nuku Hiva, the 'Land of Men', Stunning getaways for stand up paddle boarding. On average, the warmest months in Papeete are January, February, March, … Lonely Planet Tahiti & French Polynesia is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you.Swim in the sparklingly clear waters, hike to waterfalls, dive into coral wonderlands, then sips cocktail by the beach; all with your trusted travel companion. Forget diamonds, black pearls are a Tahitian gal’s best friend. It takes at least 4½ hours of steady walking to reach the top. During the annual Heiva festival in July, the whole country goes full tilt: the best dancers compete in decadent competitions wearing little more than palm fronds while they wiggle their hips at warp speed; outrigger-canoe racing ignites the lagoons; and traditional sports such as coconut husking go pro. Find the best Itineraries for Tahiti, Bora Bora, Moorea, Raiatea and Taha'a. Stand up paddling (SUP) has become a fun and popular pastime. With just a little over two inches of rain and warm temperatures between the high 60s and low 80s, the weather is perfect for beach goers and outdoor enthusiasts and the sunny summer days provide for some of the best views as well as prime ocean conditions. What Tahiti lacks in wide white-sand beaches, it makes up for in waterfall-laden, shadowy mountains, unpretentiously beautiful black-sand beaches, sheltered blue lagoons and a distinctly Polynesian, modern buzz. A startling variety of adventure options await: there are mountains to climb, coral gardens to snorkel, scenic areas to quad bike, waves to surf and sloping reefs to dive. It’s an unforgettable experience. While you can visit Madagascar in the first three months of the year, you are likely to get very wet. What little land mass there is peeks up only several metres above the surface and encircles lagoons so blue and thriving that high-island lagoons look meek in comparison. View Full Profile A river runs through the giant, wormlike caves so that hiking through them actually means lots of swimming in cold water. The festival takes place on other islands including Bora Bora. Half-day trips cost from 8000 CFP per person. The world's 500 best places to visit RANKED by Lonely Planet, with Petra in Jordan No1, then the Galapagos Islands and Australia's Uluru - and the Lake District is the UK's top spot Caroline O'Donoghue explores Mo'orea Island, and learns about the delicate relationship between the ocean and the paradise island's inhabitants. Huahine is refreshingly void of bling and large-scale development. A better option is to spend the night in one of two simple shelters (free of charge) on the route. Once the reef ends, the coastline becomes steep and gets pounded by waves when there’s swell. Stay at a resort or head to Tahiti Iti to experience a more traditional pace of life – all international air travel goes through Tahiti, and it would be a shame to miss such an essential part of this region's cultural puzzle. InterContinental Resort Tahiti is a 4.5 star hotel located at Pointe Tata A in Tahiti. Book your tickets online for the top things to do in Papeete, French Polynesia on Tripadvisor: See 19,090 traveler reviews and photos of Papeete tourist attractions. In January rainfall can reach up to 340mm and in February there is a high risk of cyclones, particularly in the northeast of the island. However, many of the ancient patterns have been copied or provide inspiration for new designs. These small businesses have been hit the hardest with the drop in tourism and desperately need your business. Mo’orea is a tropical-island cliché brought to life. Be ready to say hello to every friendly islander you pass in the village and to explore the magical white sand motu, deep blue lagoon and manta ray–filled passes. Dry season, between the months of May and October, is arguably the best season to visit Bora Bora, when the temperatures are around 75 degrees Fahrenheit (24 degrees Celsius), and the humidity is low.Clear skies and pleasant weather make hiking the island's jungle interior, and beach-hopping, more fun. Despite a reputation for opulence and exclusivity, it's perfectly possible…, The name Teahupoo is synonymous with fear in the surfing world. Waterfalls. Lonely Planet Tahiti & French Polynesia is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. All rights reserved. Brando died in 2004, and by 2005 his estate executors had sold the rights to development to a major property developer in Tahiti. But here are plenty of other spots for the less warrior-like to surf: with warm water and swell from all directions beginners can paddle out to shore breaks, while more advanced surfers will be spoiled with hollow reef waves year-round. Favorites like Denver, Dubai, and Vancouver made the list, but some of the other cities aren't as popular. Austral winter is known as a peak tourist season and lures travellers from all over the world to catch pearl harvest season, watch sharks, and do some diving and surfing. Find what to do today, this weekend, or in December. Between the Vaiharuru Waterfall and the Puraha Waterfall lies the Marae Vaitoare, a well-preserved sacred site. The hike can only be attempted when there’s little or no chance of rain (you wouldn’t want to be here during a flash flood) and it’s imperative to have a guide. #1 best-selling guide to Tahiti & French Polynesia*. Swim in the sparklingly clear waters, hike to waterfalls, dive into coral wonderlands, then sips cocktail by the beach -all with your trusted travel companion. The Papenoo River is the largest on Tahiti. The best time to visit northern Vietnam is during Locals have asked walkers to stop walking this trail where there are houses, and the aggressive unchained dogs along the way will talk you out of it even more. The temperature is in the mid-80s and there’s little rain. View of Mount Otemanu, Bora Bora from the InterContinental Le Moana Resort. There's an airstrip on the island available only to guests of the resort (flights cost around 53,000 CFP return). | Sculpted by sky-piercing, moss-green peaks and lined with vivid turquoise lagoons, sultry French Polynesia is a place to take it slow and experience warm, laid-back island culture. I want emails from Lonely Planet with travel and product information, promotions, advertisements, third-party offers, and surveys. There are some excellent diving opportunities to be had in Tahiti. Caroline O'Donoghue investigates. Each accommodates about 20 walkers, has electricity and is equipped with aluminium cisterns that are usually filled with drinkable rain water. As the plane begins to descend, a magical scene comes into view: a perfect Morse-code ring of motu (small islets), mop-topped with palms, separating the indigo of the ocean from the crisp palette of lagoon blues. They can be observed caring for new calves and engaging in elaborate mating rituals. In pre-European times, they represented the equivalent of temples, and were places of worship, burial and human sacrifice. Lots of them. I want emails from Lonely Planet with travel and product information, promotions, advertisements, third-party offers, and surveys. Then there's a rather steep climb, and after about 45 minutes you reach a superb viewpoint over Fautaua Waterfall. Here are some of Anaa's best unique experiences for travellers. They come in silvery white to black and every colour in between, so it’s easy to get seduced by these sea gems’ soothing hues. But i am confused about the best… Best Time To Visit Sasan Gir | Wildlife & Nature - Lonely Planet Forum - Thorn Tree Hi there, we use cookies to improve your experience on our website. These trips visit several other spots around the atoll, but not the resort. We have reviews of the best places to see in Papeete. It has a 4.0 overall guest rating based on 3623 reviews. © 2020 Lonely Planet. Lonely Planet announced the top ten cities every traveler should visit in 2020, and some of them may surprise you.. When Christianity began to spread along the coastal regions, the Papenoo Valley became a last refuge for those faithful to the ancient Polynesian religion, and until 1846 it was also a shelter for the Tahitian rebel forces that opposed the French takeover. Today, cracked, whitewashed churches with room for up to 1200 worshippers sit mutely, yet with an austere beauty, on islands with only a scattering of residents. But if all you want to do is unwind, a couple of lovely expanses of coral sand beckon. The festive voyage also involves plenty of dance performances, local meals and a guide to explain the extraordinary culture and archaeological remains. French Polynesia’s eeriest vestiges are churches, nunneries and other grand religious structures built from coral blocks in the late 19th century. You’ll need an access permit (adult/child 600/150 CFP), available from Pape'ete Town Hall. No part of this site may be reproduced without our written permission. Snaggle-toothed volcanic peaks, deep ravines, waterfalls, secret bays and forests that could hold their own in a BBC documentary all await on this iconic boat voyage through the six inhabited islands of the Marquesas Archipelago. Weather & Precipitation: November transitions into the heart of wet season in December and January. This coast from the end of the road at Teahupoo, which is accessible only by boat or on foot, is called the Fenua Aihere, which literally means ‘the bush country’. If you arrive in June, you'll find dancers practising in nearly every village. Because of its fantastic location, Tahiti is blessed with a lovely year-round climate. If you’ve been dreaming of a holiday-brochure turquoise lagoon, coral beaches, vertical peaks and lush landscapes, you’d be hard-pressed to find better than this gem of an island. If you see one site in town, make it this market, which fills an entire city block. Culture buffs will also love Maeva, one of the most extensive complexes of pre-European marae (traditional temples) in French Polynesia. The country’s famous roulottes (literally ‘caravans’ in French, these are mobile food vans) are a cultural and gastronomic delight. This is the heart of the islands, where the cultures from all the archipelagos are mixed in the cacophonous, dusty, yet smiling and energetic capital of Pape'ete. Although June, July and August are often considered the best time to visit Tahiti, it’s worth noting that this is also the busiest time for the island, with an influx of tourists and holiday makers. If you’ve got energy to burn, there’s a slew of activities available, from hiking in the lush interior to snorkelling fabulous coral gardens. © 2020 Lonely Planet. Caroline O'Donoghue has the perfect guide to help you survive long-haul flights and keep your sanity intact. Though June to August see the most number of visitors because of families from … #1 best-selling guide to Tahiti & French Polynesia*. Sculpted by sky-piercing, moss-green peaks and lined with vivid turquoise lagoons, sultry French Polynesia is a place to take it slow and experience warm, laid-back island culture. The Marquesas are known for perfecting the art, but the best island to get a tattoo is Tahiti where there are the most artists (many are from the Marquesas). The summer months (May to August) are typically very hot and humid. Most dive shops lead whale-watching tours between July and October when humpbacks swim near the coasts. Short video slide show describing when the best time to visit this city based on weather and climate. It’s all about ecotravel, and this is why it’s gaining in popularity. Boasting some of the best beaches in the country and a snoozy Polynesian charm, Huahine is the perfect spot to recharge the batteries. Stay at a resort or head to Tahiti Iti to experience a more traditional pace of life – all international air travel goes through Tahiti, and it would be a shame to … Bring plenty of water. Taputapuatea is shrouded with a palpable aura. The best months to go to Papeete are May, June, July, August, September, October and November. Shop for colourful pareu (sarongs), shell necklaces, woven hats and local produce in the main hall. The fearsome wave at Teahupoo may be beyond many surfers’ level, but watching the pros tackle it during the Billabong Pro is one of the greatest live sporting events you may ever get to see. The Brando has made a valiant attempt to be sustainable via renewable energy, a cooling system that uses sea water and use of only solar- or human-powered vehicles (among other things), but its critics (notably The Brando-Apocalypse Now, find them on Facebook) claim that the building of the resort was incredibly destructive to the atoll due to its extraction of sand and coral from the lagoon and cultural sites from the land. All rights reserved. Visitors from other countries may require a visa. travel guide. Tattoos have never been more popular, with more and more people all over the world accepting and even embracing body art as a form of self-expression and…. Best explored by boat, this watery landscape holds empty white- and pink-sand beaches, sea-bird nesting grounds and some of the best spots in the world to dive in with a mask and snorkel. Best is to take a boat excursion, which will often take in the dark, legend-rich Vaipoiri Cave and all the good snorkelling spots along the way before reaching the the end of the reef at the Te Pari Cliffs. Some travellers I can unsubscribe any time using the unsubscribe link at the end of all emails. Next time, I plan to spend all of my time in this valley. From the historic pyramids in Cairo, Egypt, to the aerial subway line of La Paz, Bolivia, this list will give you a travel bug for the new year. Nearing the very peak of the peak season is the month of July, considered by many to be the best time to visit Bora Bora. Most guides also offer one-day hikes on a section of the coast, in combination with a boat transfer. Then the track reaches the Relais de la Maroto. Lava tubes At Hitiaa on the east coast, these lava tubes are elongated tunnels formed by the cooling and rapid hardening of lava. It usually has some good swimming conditions. You can walk past people's homes all the way to the village along this section without too many bad dogs. One of French Polynesia's undiscovered gems is the quiet, unspoiled island of Anaa. If you arrive in June, you'll find dancers practising in nearly every village. The easy 4km walk to the Fachoda (Tearape) Bridge takes about an hour. What you can't tell from a map,…, No, there's no need to remortgage the house to visit Tahiti & French Polynesia. There’s also a little snack eatery right on the beach if you get peckish. Here are our favorite places in the world to go stand up paddle boarding. ... Best Time To Visit or Travel to Papeete, Tahiti Long Range Weather. Because of all this rainfall, these months are significantly more humid than the rest of the year, with December being the most humid time of year. July. The best time to visit Tahiti is during the dry season between May and October, when the average annual temperature of 28°C (82°F) is tempered by refreshing sea breezes. Take an island with high mountains and 90-degree cliffs, douse it with tropical rainfall and give it a few million years to erode into magnificent forms – and what do you get? Dotted among the meat and fish sellers are lunchtime hawkers selling takeaway Ma’a Tahiti (traditional Tahitian food), fresh fruit juices and local ice cream. The path, starting at O Belvédère restaurant, is clearly visible and well maintained, so you don’t need a guide, but we suggest hiring one for safety reasons. January and February can be very cold, especially at night, but will reward you with incredible panoramas and quieter trekking trails as … In July, catch the country’s most spectacular festival; the percussion and dance-heavy Heiva. The best way to make sure that you see everything is probably to book a 4×4 tour (here’s a list of the best-rated ones on Tahiti). Rent a kayak, strap on a scuba bottle, hike the mountain or just lounge on the beach in untainted, simple bliss. Don't expect big resorts here – digs are in adorable and intimate family-run hotels and pensions. You could walk up any river in Tahiti and find myriad cascades, but you’re best sticking with known trails or going with a guide. Try the trodden (though near-empty) paths to Papenoo, Fautaua or take a boat ride to Tahiti Iti's Fenua Aihere for falls right on the coast. Lonely Planet Tahiti & French Polynesia is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Find a Tahitian itinerary that's perfect for you. The very rough 18km 4WD route from Papenoo on the north coast to the Relais de la Maroto motel follows the wide Papenoo Valley, the only valley to cut right through the volcanic interior of Tahiti. Get in that water via mask, fin and snorkel, on a SUP, with a scuba tank or even just splashing around on a beach. Probably the best thing you can do to travel responsibly in Tahiti and French Polynesia is to stay at a locally run pension (guesthouse) rather than at a big resort. 6 idyllic destinations for summer sailing, How I survived 30 hours of travel (without losing my mind). Leased by Marlon Brando in 1965 after he filmed Mutiny on the Bounty and fell in love with his Tahitian co-star Tarita Teriipia, the stunning atoll of Tetiaroa, 59km north of Tahiti, is now the home of the country's most luxurious 'eco' resort, the Brando, with its 35 outlandishly plush villas. A guide is highly recommended both for safety and to help you discover all the very hidden gems found mostly off the trail. The lagoon also caters to snorkellers, with some of the clearest waters in the world and healthy coral gardens. Best Time for Saving Money: Avoid the peak seasons (July, August, and the Christmas/New Year period) when the islands … Marae are religious sites built from basalt blocks placed side by side and piled up. The best time to visit Tahiti per Lonely Planet saves money on this expensive French Polynesian vacation by planning around the peak travel periods. When … Cours de franc Pacifique (CFP; Pacific franc). Mt Aorai The third-highest peak on Tahiti (2066m), Mt Aorai's ascent is one of the island’s classic climbs. Best Time to Visit Tahiti for Honeymoons: May to October. Pricing: Because of t… It’s less than 15 minutes’ walk from the parking area to the first tube, at 750m, which is around 100m long. Afterwards, you’ll get to drool over lustrous jewellery and hopefully get a great deal on a special souvenir. Rising out of the lagoon like a mini Bora Bora, Maupiti has as many of the tropical-island-fantasy attributes as its larger neighbour, but only a fraction of the hype. Best time of year to visit Tahiti. Between October and December is the best time to visit Nepal as the skies are generally clear and the views spectacular. The second tube is 300m long with two waterfalls. French Polynesia is an important breeding ground for humpback whales, which migrate to Polynesian waters between July and October. Nowadays, Tahiti cruises are becoming more and more popular thanks to the freedom they allow. Mo’orea has something for everyone. March is still part of the peak rainy season, although there is a lesser risk of being caught in a cyclone. The only other way to get to the island is by charter yacht, a few of which line up along the Pape’ete waterfront advertising lovely day trips to the atoll. While Brando was alive, the atoll remained a bird preserve and housed only one small pension where visitors could live like Robinson Crusoe in paradise. Best Time to Visit Tahiti for Sightseeing: May, June, September and October. You can only do it in good weather and if the swell isn’t too big. July, August and September are the best time to visit Tahiti, according to Excellent-Romantic-Vacations. The best time to visit Tahiti is between May and October. This is the best time to experience the gentle, unpretentiously sophisticated Polynesian culture at its fieriest. It's worth going on a guided tour of Ra’iatea for explanations on the marae since otherwise there's little in the way of visitor info. Best Time of Year to Visit Tahiti, Moorea, and Bora Bora Explore > Travel Planning Articles > Best Time of Year to Visit Tahiti. It’s possible to summit the peak and return in a day, but start at dawn because the summit tends to be covered in cloud after 11am. Tahiti’s interior is home to some of the most exquisite – and challenging – hikes in French Polynesia. Best Time for Diving & Snorkeling: April, May, June, September and October. Lonely Planet Tahiti & French Polynesia is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Wetsuits are provided by guides. Outside the city, explore the majestic, mountainous interior on a 4WD tour, learn to dive in the translucent lagoon, wander amid mystical archaeological sites, and from July to October go whale-watching. It’s possible to hike the entire 8km of this precarious coast dotted with archaeological treasures, wild passion fruit, waterfalls and caves, but no current human habitation. Airstrip on the route caught in a cyclone best Itineraries for Tahiti, best. 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