Tahiti Trip Report to Huahine & Tikehau – December 2019
Papeete, the invigorating capital city and gateway of the territory, boasts world-class resorts, spas, fine restaurants, nightclubs, and endless shopping at the vibrant markets, pearl shops, and boutiques.
We Stayed At
Located on one of the nicest white sand beaches on Tahiti’s west coast, the Tahiti Ia Ora Beach Resort managed by Sofitel
faces the lagoon bordered by the coral reef with the island of Moorea in the background. All spacious 146 rooms and 12 overwater bungalows offer a panoramic view of the ocean. All units are fully equipped with air conditioning, personal safe and a bathroom with separate bathtub and shower. The resort features 2 restaurants, outrigger canoes, a tennis court and the largest sand-bottom swimming pool in the South Pacific set in the middle of a tropical garden.
Day Tour in Papeete
What a fabulous morning in Papeete! I was invited by some awesome friends to join a walking foodie tour downtown. We started at a lovely cafe where the locals love to go for Sunday breakfast. A twist on the traditional poison cru served with a delicious donut. Then we jumped onto tuk tuks for a hop on hop off tour with stops at the Cathedral in the town square, Art Street, City Hall and the magnificent Queens Gardens. The plants and trees direct descendants of plantings for the Queen in the 1700’s and her very own beautiful koi pond. Next foodie stop the Star Studded Hollywood Cafe for a scrumptious papaya tart and fresh coconut milk. Then a visit to the President’s official place of business decorated for the festive season and then off to the marche public markets. An absolute must for every visitor to Tahiti, we had a very special private food tasting with bread fruit, taro, coconut bread skewers and gelee. Final stop to wash down all of this local goodness- a Hinano Beer of course! Manuia!
A Little Bit of Work – Tahiti Travel Exchange
The Tahiti Tourisme Exchange (TTE) is an intense one-day workshop that offers North American travel professionals like Tahiti Travel Mate, the chance to interact with local properties, services and operators.
This year the event is being held aboard the Aranui 5
custom-built, dual-purpose passenger/freighter that sails from Tahiti to the Marquesas, Tuamotu and Society Islands in French Polynesia on a 14 day all-inclusive cruise.
Aranui, meaning "the great highway" in the local language, serves as a lifeline to the inhabitants of the Marquesas islands, bringing supplies to each principal village and several remote valleys.
Next Stop – Tikehau
As you fly into Tikehau, this graceful atoll looks like a crown of white and pink-sand beaches shimmering around a turquoise lagoon making it almost too breathtaking to be true. Jacques Cousteau’s research crew dubbed it “the most fish abundant Tuamotu atoll.”
We Stayed at
A truly secluded paradise! Located on Motu Tiano, a tiny islet of 4 hectares on the coral reef, the Tikehau Pearl Beach Resort
is the only resort on the atoll. The resort is nested in a coconut plantation bordered by a beautiful white and pink sandy beach that you will reach after a 20 minutes transfer by boat.
Each spacious beach and overwater bungalow at the Tikehau Pearl Beach Resort features a private veranda and a traditional design accented by natural materials such as bamboo, exotic woods and coconut fibers.
Both the Tianoa Bar and Poreho Restaurant are poolside, providing the perfect setting to admire the surrounding scenery by day and the starry sky by night.
Several excursions and activities are available on site: snorkeling, canoeing, sunset cruises, bicycling and scuba diving with the on-site dive operator.
Activities in Tikehau
Lots of adventures and experiences as we explore the many water activities available here on Tikehau!
I can’t think of a better welcome to this beautiful lagoon paradise than a Sunset Cruise with a cocktail in hand! This afternoon we joined the staff for an hour cruise available to book by all guests at the Tikehau Pearl Beach. What a fabulous introduction.
And it continues…..Today we set out for a 6 hour Lagoon Tour and Motu Picnic. We travelled by boat to unspoiled, pristine motu islets where we snorkeled, beach-combed and relaxed. A highlight was a visit to the Birds Island followed by a Polynesian lunch.
Next Stop – Huahine
Huahine is like Bora Bora, but about 100 years ago. With lush forests, an untamed landscape and quaint villages, it is a place where you can live like a local. A deep, crystal-clear lagoon surrounds the two islands that comprise Huahine, while magnificent bays and white-sand beaches add drama to the experience. Relatively unchanged by the modern world, Huahine offers the slower, more tranquil pace of old Polynesia.
We Stayed at
The Maitai Lapita Village Huahine
, which lies between a lake and the lagoon, on an ancient archaeological site where Huahinean ancestors once lived, hence the name Lapita Village. This Huahine hotel offers excellent accommodation at a great price, welcoming hospitality, a restaurant and bar, a swimming pool, a multitude of activities and much more.
Hotel Site Inspection
Hidden in a small bay that can only be accessed by boat, the Royal Huahine
offers seclusion although still part of the main island. The hotels resort features garden, beach and overwater bungalows, all facing west to take advantage of the spectacular sunsets over the neighboring islands of Raiatea and Tahaa. All units are decorated in Polynesian style and are comfortably equipped. Guest amenities include a freshwater swimming pool, hotel bar, black pearl boutique and a range of free activities. The resort's overwater restaurant, Le Ari'i, provides a dining experience with a spectacular sunset view.
Activities in Huahine
This afternoon we joined Island Eco Tours for the half day “Sacred Sights & Legendary Places” tour. Like all of the Society Islands, Huahine has a beautiful lagoon surrounding a lush green interior, but the most unique thing to discover here is the Village of Maeva; home to the largest concentration of archaeological sites in the Pacific. If you're looking to learn more about Polynesia, including the fascinating history and culture of this stunning "Garden Island," then this is the perfect tour for you.
On our tour we visited the Archaeological Sites of Maeva Village, Vanilla Plantation, Fish Traps, Beach on Motu Maeva, Giant Blue Eyed Eels, Belvedere View Point, Maroe Bay and Huahine Iti.
Rental Car in Huahine
Sightseeing for the day in our Rental Car. There was so much to see on our half day tour that we decided to grab a car and go explore some more! First stop revisiting the very interesting Fare Pote’e Museum. We made sure to make a stop at Gallery Umatatea: owned by American artist Melanie Dupre. Her beautiful watercolor paintings capture the gorgeous scenery, people and culture of Huahine. She also sells Tahitian ice-cream which was a real treat! After exploring Huahine Iti, we made our way to Fare, the largest town. Here we stocked up on some snacks at the island’s only supermarket. This is a lovely quaint South Pacific town where in the morning you’ll find locals selling freshly caught fish, coconuts, bananas and all sorts of fruits and vegetable. Several cute places to eat at and home to the local’s favorite place too go on a Friday night: Yacht Club Huahine where a live band entertains to a crowd! Food was very good, such a fun place!
Hotel Site inspection
this friendly family hotel is located on the southernmost part of Huahine within the Bay of Avea, along a superb white sand beach. This hotel offers beach bungalows facing the lagoon, Lagoon-View and Garden bungalows. All units feature a deck to enjoy a drink at the end of the day, and a private bathroom. Perfect for families or for budget travelers, the large bungalows can accommodate up to 4 adults.
A panoramic restaurant overlooks the lagoon and offers an excellent selection of meals combining international and traditional cooking (the best food on the island according to us). With it’s own private, white sandy beach, great snorkeling is available right at the front of the resort!
Our 2018 Tahiti Vacation to Rangiroa & Beyond!
Hubby and I had the trip of a lifetime when we visited Rangiroa! This amazing Atoll is a string of coral encircling a luminous turquoise and jade-green lagoon and is one of the world's greatest dive destinations. On the atoll of Rangiroa coral reef, the Kia Ora Resort & Spa is located near the Tiputa pass, along a large white sand beach bordered by coconut trees.
We stayed at the Kia Ora Resort & Spa
This resort offers bungalow categories to suit all budgets, families etc. We stayed in one of the very private and spacious Pool Villas. These lovely suites feature a beautifully appointed living room/bedroom, modern bathroom with all of the amenities and a gorgeous outdoor living space. You’ll have your own plunge pool, chaise lounges, dining cabana and a very cool outdoor shower and bathtub!
Diving Rangiroa with TOP DIVE
Had an exceptional diving experience on Rangiroa and are just so thankful for TOP DIVE for this amazing opportunity. My clients just rave about the multi pass discount and the incredible staff. I can definitely bare witness to this and highly recommend my clients to incorporate a dive in French Polynesia.
We Explored Rangiroa
The resort provided several options to visit the two main villages on the atoll, Avatoru and Tiputa: rental car, bicycle, sightseeing tour or fun-car. We of course chose the fun car!
Quick stay at the Le Maitai Rangiroa
The Le Maitai Rangiroa
is located half way between the villages of Avatoru and Tiputa in a large coconut plantation bordering the lagoon. We stopped here for a site inspection and really liked this 3 star charming, great value property.
Continuing our Tahiti Vacation - Taha'a & Bora Bora
is known as the Vanilla Island! Taha'a, with the rich aroma of vanilla lingering heavily in the air, offers a glimpse of the traditional, tranquil life of the Tahitians. We thoroughly recommend a half day Taha’a sightseeing tour. There is plenty to show you: sparkling lagoons bursting with aquatic life, historic sites, old-world plantations overflowing with fragrant crops of pineapple, vanilla and papaya, and unparalleled vistas. We loved every minute of our trip and where we stayed was amazing!
Le Taha’a Island Resort & Spa
Wow! Features Overwater Suites, Beach Villas and 2 Royal Beach Villas. Private patio and tropical gardens, private swimming pool (beach villas), spacious lounge and terrace, private deck with direct access to the lagoon (overwater suites). All of the Suites and Villas are very spacious and beautifully appointed with local materials. The Coral Gardens located adjacent to the resort are exceptional – it was only my 2nd snorkeling opportunity ever and I’m hooked! So many clients want to be able to snorkel without having to take a paid for excursion so the proximity to fabulous snorkeling is such an asset.
Vaitape is Bora Bora's main town. Most visitors to Bora Bora visit the main island for a few hours during their stay. You'll find a number of eateries and boutiques selling souvenirs and lots of jewelry stores selling beautiful black pearls. Vaitape also boasts a tourist office, two grocery stores where you can stock up on some snacks, a medical center and other necessities. But, onward we go to our resort!
The Conrad Bora Bora Nui
Having re-opened in early 2017 and re-branded from the Hilton to the deluxe rated Conrad Bora Bora Nui, it was time to visit and see for ourselves what this property has to offer! It definitely did not disappoint! The resort has managed to beautifully combine Polynesian tradition with state-of-the-art amenities from the accommodations, the 4 dining/beverage options (personal vote for best buffet breakfast!) to the plentiful recreational activities.
It offers 114 Villas and Suites all with views of the lagoon and horizon, including 86 Overwater Villas (18 featuring infinity plunge pools) and 2 x 2 story Presidential Overwater Villas with plunge pools. We loved the split level deck with sunbathing netting and loungers maximizing private relaxation – and the fabulous bathrooms with huge soaker tub!
Ending our Tahiti Vacation at Tetiaroa
The exquisite Polynesian atoll of Tetiaroa
, located 30 miles north of Tahiti, a place of stunning beauty, tranquility and rejuvenation — first for Tahitian royalty, who chose this island above all others for their summer retreat, and later for Marlon Brando who chose it for his personal sanctuary. The Brando is a unique luxury resort where everything that surrounds you has been designed around clean, renewable energy sources.
The all-inclusive Brando features 35 secluded villas with private pools on white-sand beaches frequented by sea turtles and exotic birds. Every villa is on a white sand beach, has its own outdoor eating and private beach area, its own private pool, soft, cozy furnishings, large windows that let you indulge in the sun, the breeze and lagoon views, and modern conveniences such as a media room.
The Ultimate Tour offered by The Brando
was a perfect way to learn more of the surrounding eco systems and the diverse nature inhabiting this beautiful part of the world. Each tour is conducted by a Naturalist Guide from the Tetiaroa Society’s foundation. Hubby and i thought this was one of the highlights of our 2018 vacation to Tahiti. It was a complete winner for us.
Tahiti Travel Mate and Global Digital Footprints Announce Partnership!
Global Digital Footprints
(GDF) is proud to announce a new partnership with travel company, Tahiti Travel Mate
(TTM). As the leading online Tahiti agency
in the USA, TTM focuses on high-end honeymoons, weddings and anniversary trips throughout the Islands of Tahiti. TTM will partner with GDF on all facets of marketing including social media, website management, SEO, SEM and content development.
Alison Adam, owner of TTM, commented on the new partnership, “Mark and his team bring with them the hands-on knowledge required for our small travel business. We need the marketing expertise of GDF so we can focus our time and energy on our clients. We look forward to seeing our partnership grow and enjoying mutual success.”
Launched in 2018, GDF is a full-service digital marketing and travel distribution firm specializing in small businesses. Mark Punshon
, Founder and CEO commented, “We are proud to be working with such a leading Travel company. TTM is the ultimate travel company when booking Tahiti
and we look forward to working with Alison to grow her business to Tahiti and beyond.”
Interested in speaking with Global Digital Footprints? Contact them at firstname.lastname@example.org