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Why now is the time to visit Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia

Why now is the time to visit Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia

The place of daydreams need no longer be just a daydream. Tahiti and the Islands of French Polynesia are open for business.

With 118 islands, spread over 4 million square kilometres, there is plenty of space for sublime social distancing in the islands of Tahiti and French Polynesia.

Even before touching down, as the islands’ reef-fringed lagoons come into view, all the cares of the outside world are sure to disappear (although Los Angeles is only an 8 hour flight away).

The finest white sands, clearest blue waters, a warm friendly welcome and some of the world’s most fabulous places to stay await in Tahiti and her islands.

Whilst the temptation to check-in and never venture too far from your dreamy overwater bungalow (many of which boast their own private plunge pools and “Tahiti TV” – a glass panelled floor through which to watch tropical fish in the turquoise waters below), there is so much more to explore in Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia; destinations as diverse as they are breathtakingly beautiful!

The idyllic lagoons are encircled by dozens of pristine motus (small islets, just perfect for private beach picnics). Moorea’s mountains are traversed by rugged hiking trails and lava tubes that invite jungle adventure touring. Volcanic peak climbs, reveal lush fern-forested valleys and are rewarded with spectacular views, waterfalls and refreshing swims in secluded waterholes.

 

FIVE GREAT REASONS TO VISIT TAHITI AND FRENCH POLYNESIA:

On land or sea, there are new adventures to be had at every turn:

SWIM WITH A MULTITUDE OF MARINE LIFE

Mingling with manta rays and swimming with dolphins is all in a day’s play in Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia. The waters of French Polynesia are a Marine Mammal Sanctuary, home to dozens of species of curious whales and friendly dolphins. Visitors to these islands between July and October can even swim with humpback whales; an unforgettable privilege and a true bucket-list experience!

 

SENSATIONAL SCUBA DIVING

The tropical waters of Tahiti and French Polynesia serve up a rich biodiversity of experiences for divers of all experience levels. From the tranquil lagoons which provide a natural aquarium for novices to learn in, to ocean-side drift dives, wreck dives, night dives and shark dives that will thrill and delight the most experienced scuba enthusiasts.

 

SURF SOME OF THE WORLD’S BIGGEST REEF BREAKS

Beyond the tranquil lagoons, Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia offer some of the world’s biggest reef breaks. And whilst the legendary Teahupoo Pass may steal the show, there are reef breaks and beach surfing to suit all levels of skill and surf-dedication.

 

SAVOUR THE BLEND OF CULTURES

Local markets are filled with the sound of ukuleles and the sweet smell coconut oil, selling everything from French pastries to sarongs. Fresh tropical ingredients from the land and sea, meet with classic French techniques and recipes on your plate. Polynesian culture and French influence merge in music and dance, on menus and in day spas throughout the region.

 

SPECTACULAR SUNSETS AND SENSATIONAL STARGAZING

The most magical insta-worthy sunsets in every imaginable hue are best enjoyed tropical cocktail in hand. And when the sun has slipped back into the Pacific Ocean after another brilliant day, the Polynesian night skies twinkle with a spectacular magic of their own far away from any big city lights. See constellations not visible in the Northern Hemisphere and learn the local legends that surround them.

Of course there is also kayaking and kitesurfing, sailing and stand-up paddle boarding, fishing and photography, or simply relax and enjoy schedule-free days caressed by warm tropical breezes and far from the cares of the rest of the world. Fall asleep to the soothing sounds of the lagoon waters lapping at the feet of your overwater bungalow, and wake up to dive into the refreshing lagoon waters before breakfast.

 

LUXURY ACCOMODATION IN TAHITI AND THE ISLANDS OF FRENCH POLYNESIA

For honeymooners and romantic escapes, adventure holidays and family-friendly breaks, or the ultimately indulgent celebration with family and friends; this is the kind of destination where you can do as much – or as little – as you like; and these are just some of our favourite places to do exactly as you please:

THE BRANDO

So captivated by these beautiful islands was actor Marlon Brando that he bought his own private island here in 1960 with a vision of creating a sustainable and responsible luxury escape in the Pacific. More than four decades later, this vision was brought to life with the opening of the Brando as his legacy.

The remote island of Tetiaroa, has long held a special place in Polynesian history and culture, having been the favoured retreat of Tahitian royalty for centuries (ancient ‘marae’ (traditional temples) can still be seen today). Today the island’s 35 paparazzi-proof luxury beach front villas and the spectacular Brando Residences attract all kinds of modern ‘royalty’ from Leonardo di Caprio and Margot Robbie to Pippa Middleton and president Obama.

Each spacious and very private ‘beach house’ (in one, two or three bedroom configurations) enjoys its own plunge pool and outdoor bath, separate, sitting room, media room and outdoor dining area. The super-luxe Residences take luxury and privacy a step further with multiple living and dining areas, and a kitchen with the option of a dedicated chef to provide personalised in-residence dining throughout your stay.

The private island resort also offers its guests a choice of restaurants and bars, a decadent tree-house day spa, bikes to explore the island and a wide range of water sports (kayaking, outrigger canoes, snorkelling, stand-up paddle boarding, deep sea fishing and scuba diving). Guests can also enjoy birdwatching walks and reef experiences with an expert naturalist guide to see whales and turtles, eagle-rays and dolphins, Tahuna Iti and other seabirds.

An UltraLuxe travel experience with conscience, the Brando offers unparalleled environmental commitment with uncompromised luxury.

 

FOUR SEASONS BORA BORA

The Four Seasons Bora Bora’s dreamy overwater bungalows stretch out like strands of beads into the idyllic, reef fringed lagoon. With the majestic Mt Otemanu as their backdrop, guests can enjoy swimming, snorkelling, kayaking, jetskiing and romantic dinners on a private motu for two.

The property’s overwater bungalows and beachfront villas also enjoy access to the resort’s infinity pool and tennis courts, a choice of dining options, kids club, day spa and wide range of water sports and island-hopping day tours.

The luxury resort offers a range of exclusive experiences: cruising Bora Bora and her islands on one of the resort’s luxury cruisers, island-hopping excursions by seaplane or helicopter, marine-biologist led underwater adventures and private snorkelling safaris, as well as exclusive encounters with a renowned local artist culminating in a commissioned art-work to take home.

 

NUKUTEPIPI

A very private Polynesian paradise, perfect for special celebrations and extended family gatherings. Nukuteipip is a tiny atoll in the Duke of Gloucester Islands in the French Polynesian Tuamoto archipelago that takes UltraLuxe to new levels.

The exclusive-use, all-inclusive Nukutepipi island accommodates up to 52 indulged guests in a four bedroom master villa, 2 two-bedroom Junior villas – each with their own private pool, and thirteen air-conditioned beach bungalows.

More than a decade in the making, this private haven has been carefully constructed to respect and protect the local fauna and flora that it showcases. The exclusive island hideaway’s design fuses contemporary luxuries with traditional island simplicity.

With a staff to guest ratio of nearly 2:1, your every need is catered for, 24/7. Do as much or as little as you like; the island offers opportunities for archery and bird-watching, massages and mini-golf, star-gazing and scuba-diving, whale-swims and yoga; and just about everything in between: kite surfing, paddleboarding, deep-sea fishing, kayaking, sailing, tennis and more.

 

There are of course so many more properties and places, exclusives and experiences that we can curate in Tahiti and the islands of French Polynesia; and our personalised luxury travel itineraries will ensure that you see beyond the highlights to experience true local insights and the very best that the region has to offer.

 

Honeymoon or milestone celebration, family vacation or UltraLuxe escape: what better way to reset, rejuvenate and revive.  Contact us to start planning: nzdesign@southern-crossings.com

 

POST COVID-19 ENTRY REQUIREMENTS FOR TAHITI AND THE ISLANDS OF FRENCH POLYNESIA

From 15 July 2020, Tahiti and the Islands of French Polynesia will welcome international visitors again.

Visitors to the island nation will be required to:

  • Provide a negative COVID-19 test result within 72 hours of travel.
  • Take out appropriate international travel insurance.
  • Provide itinerary and contact details for the duration of stay.
  • Agree to random re-testing for COVID-19 within four days of arrival.

Face masks are recommended, but not mandatory, where social distancing cannot be observed.

For further details, visit https://tahititourisme.com/en-us/covid-19/

And read on for details of border re-openings in our other destinations

 

Pictured above: The Brando, Four Seasons Bora Bora and Nuketepipi. Header image: the Brando