Whether it's Bora Bora, Tahiti or Moorea, a trip to French Polynesia is unforgettable. The shades of blue are hypnotic and the sharp volcanic landforms enchanting. The heady vegetative luxuriance commands respect, contrasting with the beaches draped in coconut palms. No words can describe the feeling of eternity and immensity that you feel as you walk on the soil of one of the 118 islands of French Polynesia. Your gaze is easily lost in the horizon. A grandeur that, as much as it tries to tempt you to relax and unwind, is also uncovered by getting to know the culture and way of life, which are as refined as they are emblematic. Put on your flip flops and set off to discover the Polynesian arts and folklore that continue to resonate, like the tattooing, the 'upa'upa dance and songs such as the fakanau. Taking part in the famous Heiva festival will give you a flavor of that culture in all its vivacity. But a trip to French Polynesia wouldn't be complete without taking full advantage of its fauna and flora, its world-renowned natural resources like the seabeds that are so popular with divers. Just grab yourself a mask and snorkel and you'll be ready to go off and meet the graceful manta rays and moray eels. When you visit the Leeward islands, how about lacing up your sneakers and hiking along some of its heavenly paths, maybe discovering an idyllic waterfall hidden among a tangle of ferns. Finish up by trying your hand at the most beautiful sport there could be in this garden of Eden: surfing. Novices will head for the beach breaks, while experienced surfers who are used to riding the tubes will seek the reef breaks for ultimate excitement!
Boat rentals or yacht charters are also available, but can be expensive. You can rent a bareback boat, meaning you must be licensed to operate the vessel and no crew is available. Crewed luxury yachts also service the islands, enabling you to be pampered by a crew who handles the sailing or motor yacht or catamaran. Local operators include Tahiti Yacht Charter, Tahiti Boat, and Tahiti Yachts.

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With soothing lagoon waters, a rich botanical environment, air scented of vanilla and taire flowers and the blissful tranquility of each island, The Islands of Tahiti offer a « spa whithin a spa » experience, found nowhere else on eath. Each spa is unique haven – private gardens, thatched-roof open- air bungalows with tropical fish parading below, or atop hills overlooking the lagoons.

When, on 7 December 1821, Pōmare II died, his son Pōmare III was only eighteen months old. His uncle and the religious people therefore supported the regency, until 2 May 1824, the date on which the missionaries conducted his coronation, a ceremony unprecedented in Tahiti. Taking advantage of the weakness of the Pōmare, local chiefs won back some of their power and took the hereditary title of Tavana (from the English word 'governor'). The missionaries also took advantage of the situation to change the way in which powers were arranged, and to make the Tahitian monarchy closer to the English model of a constitutional monarchy. They therefore created the Tahitian Legislative Assembly, which first sat on 23 February 1824.
The first years proved hard work for the missionaries, despite their association with the Pōmare, the importance of whom they were aware of thanks to the reports of earlier sailors. In 1803, upon the death of Pōmare I, his son Vaira'atoa succeeded him and took the title of Pomare II. He allied himself more and more with the missionaries, and from 1803 they taught him reading and the Gospels. Furthermore, the missionaries encouraged his wish to conquer his opponents, so that they would only have to deal with a single political contact, enabling them to develop Christianity in a unified country.[9] The conversion of Pōmare II to Protestantism in 1812 marks moreover the point when Protestantism truly took off on the island.
Start your 2.5-hour Bora Bora snorkeling tour in the afternoon, departing from your hotel or Vaitape Pier. Then hop aboard a motorized covered boat that takes your across Bora Bora’s magnificent lagoon. Your guide makes several snorkeling stops along the way for an up-close look at sharks, rays and other fish. Stop near the barrier reef and discover a coral garden and marine park teeming with nearly 700 species of tropical fish (weather permitting). Snap on your provided snorkel equipment and slip into the aquamarine water that makes French Polynesia famous. Black-tip reef sharks are another highlight of Bora Bora. Watch your guide jump into the water to attract and hand-feed more than a dozen sharks. Observe this feeding frenzy from the boat, or experience the thrill through your snorkel mask while in the sea. Continue your excursion to a shallow bay where you’ll come face-to-face with hungry stingrays under your guide’s expert supervision. Enjoy fantastic photo ops before re-boarding the boat for a trip around the island of Bora Bora and a return to your hotel or the port.
Whether it's Bora Bora, Tahiti or Moorea, a trip to French Polynesia is unforgettable. The shades of blue are hypnotic and the sharp volcanic landforms enchanting. The heady vegetative luxuriance commands respect, contrasting with the beaches draped in coconut palms. No words can describe the feeling of eternity and immensity that you feel as you walk on the soil of one of the 118 islands of French Polynesia. Your gaze is easily lost in the horizon. A grandeur that, as much as it tries to tempt you to relax and unwind, is also uncovered by getting to know the culture and way of life, which are as refined as they are emblematic. Put on your flip flops and set off to discover the Polynesian arts and folklore that continue to resonate, like the tattooing, the 'upa'upa dance and songs such as the fakanau. Taking part in the famous Heiva festival will give you a flavor of that culture in all its vivacity. But a trip to French Polynesia wouldn't be complete without taking full advantage of its fauna and flora, its world-renowned natural resources like the seabeds that are so popular with divers. Just grab yourself a mask and snorkel and you'll be ready to go off and meet the graceful manta rays and moray eels. When you visit the Leeward islands, how about lacing up your sneakers and hiking along some of its heavenly paths, maybe discovering an idyllic waterfall hidden among a tangle of ferns. Finish up by trying your hand at the most beautiful sport there could be in this garden of Eden: surfing. Novices will head for the beach breaks, while experienced surfers who are used to riding the tubes will seek the reef breaks for ultimate excitement!
When I announced that I was going to be visiting Bora Bora on a budget, people seemed skeptical. Big travel bloggers told me it wouldn’t be possible, because it was the most expensive place on the planet. After having been there, that statement simply isn’t true. Sure, it’s not Southeast Asia cheap, but I found prices to be in line with those in the Maldives or the Cook Islands, and less on some of the lesser-visited islands.
Because we care about your preferences, we let you choose what matters the most to you. Choose the office close to your location or get your vacations built by local experts based in Tahiti. By choosing the US agency, your request will be treated by Pacific Islands (based in Los Angeles, and licensed as California Seller of Travel # 2098768-40). If you decide to choose our local experts, your request will be processed by travel agents living in Tahiti and regularly visiting accommodations and updated on new excursions or services.
The party of Gaston Tong Sang won the territorial elections, but that did not solve the political crisis: the two minority parties of Oscar Temaru and Gaston Flosse, who together have one more member in the territorial assembly than the political party of Gaston Tong Sang, allied to prevent Gaston Tong Sang from becoming president of French Polynesia. Gaston Flosse was then elected president of French Polynesia by the territorial assembly on 23 February 2008 with the support of the pro-independence party led by Oscar Temaru, while Oscar Temaru was elected speaker of the territorial assembly with the support of the anti-independence party led by Gaston Flosse. Both formed a coalition cabinet. Many observers doubted that the alliance between the anti-independence Gaston Flosse and the pro-independence Oscar Temaru, designed to prevent Gaston Tong Sang from becoming president of French Polynesia, could last very long.[21]
Having said that, some things were cheaper than I expected: Air Tahiti offers a free ferry shuttle from the airport to the mainland for anyone who isn’t staying at a fancy resort. Most guesthouses offer free transfers from where the shuttle drops you off. Food wasn’t crazy-expensive and I usually ate for $10-15 a day. You can rent a bicycle for $10 a day to explore the island.

Tahiti (/təˈhiːti/; French pronunciation: ​[ta.iti]; previously also known as Otaheite (obsolete)) is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia. The island is located in the archipelago of the Society Islands in the central Southern Pacific Ocean, and is divided into two parts: the bigger, northwestern part, Tahiti Nui, and the smaller, southeastern part, Tahiti Iti. The island was formed from volcanic activity and is high and mountainous with surrounding coral reefs. The population is 189,517 inhabitants (2017 census),[1] making it the most populous island of French Polynesia and accounting for 68.7% of its total population.
The ʻōteʻa is one of the few dances which existed in pre-European times as a male dance. On the other hand, the hura (Tahitian vernacular for hula), a dance for women, has disappeared, and the couple's dance 'upa'upa is likewise gone but may have re-emerged as the tamure. Nowadays, the ʻōteʻa can be danced by men (ʻōteʻa tāne), by women (ʻōteʻa vahine), or by both genders (ʻōteʻa ʻāmui = united ʻō.). The dance is with music only, drums, but no singing. The drum can be one of the types of the tōʻere, a laying log of wood with a longitudinal slit, which is struck by one or two sticks. Or it can be the pahu, the ancient Tahitian standing drum covered with a shark skin and struck by the hands or with sticks. The rhythm from the tōʻere is fast, from the pahu it is slower. A smaller drum, the faʻatete, can be used.
French Polynesians vote in the French presidential elections and at the 2007 French presidential election, in which the pro-independence leader Oscar Temaru openly called to vote for the Socialist candidate Ségolène Royal while the parties opposed to independence generally supported the center-right candidate Nicolas Sarkozy, the turnout in French Polynesia was 69.12% in the first round of the election and 74.67% in the second round in favour of Nicolas Sarkozy ahead in both rounds of the election expressing their will to remain in the French Republic. (versus in Metropolitan France in the 2nd round: Nicolas Sarkozy 51.9%; Ségolène Royal 48.1%).[23]

Beyond the city atmosphere, Tahiti is also a scenic island with lush landscapes and large abounding waterfalls. Leave the more developed areas behind and you will find shady hiking trails, pleasant beaches and calm waters. This unique juxtaposition makes Tahiti one of the most diverse islands in French Polynesia. We recommend exploring these interior peaks and valleys on a guided hike or Jeep Safari tour.
Other great expeditions undertaken around 1000 AD established the Polynesian triangle consisting of Hawaii (to the north), Easter Island (to the east), Tahiti and her islands (to the west) and New Zealand (to the south-west.) The various languages derived from the ma'ohi that are spoken in theses islands testify to the common origin of their peoples.
In about 1810, Pōmare II married Teremo'emo'e daughter of the chief of Raiatea, to ally himself with the chiefdoms of the Leeward Islands. On 12 November 1815, thanks to these alliances, Pōmare II won a decisive battle at Fe'i Pī (Punaauia), notably against Opuhara,[29] the chief of the powerful clan of Teva.[10] This victory allowed Pōmare II to be styled Ari'i Rahi, or the king of Tahiti. It was the first time that Tahiti had been united under the control of a single family. It was the end of Tahitian feudalism and the military aristocracy, which were replaced by an absolute monarchy. At the same time, Protestantism quickly spread, thanks to the support of Pōmare II, and replaced the traditional beliefs. In 1816 the London Missionary Society sent John Williams as a missionary and teacher, and starting in 1817, the Gospels were translated into Tahitian (Reo Maohi) and taught in the religious schools. In 1818, the minister William Pascoe Crook founded the city of Papeete, which became the capital of the island.
Bora Bora has become synonymous with overwater bungalows. Many of these lavish floating villas have glass floors that supply a window to the lagoon life below. This locale is unique in the fact that most Bora Bora resort hotels are built on their own tiny island, or motu, and visits elsewhere must be arranged by boat transfer. Not to worry, though, you will hardly need to leave your bungalow let alone the resort. From lounging on your own private deck and receiving room service via outrigger canoe, to indulging in a rejuvenating spa treatment, you will pass the time in quiet seclusion and opulent luxury.
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