Thinking of exploring the exotic isles around Tahiti? We have gathered everything you need to know about Tahiti and the Leeward islands, and how to make the most of your luxury cruising holiday here.
Where is Tahiti?
Tahiti is the largest island in the Windward group of French Polynesia and houses the country’s capital, Papeete. You’ll find the 118 islands that make up French Polynesia slap bang in the middle of the Pacific Ocean between South America and Australia. While each island varies in size, the group of archipelagos together cover an area roughly the size of Europe. To get to the Moorings base on Raiatea Island, you’ll need to fly from Papeete to Raiatea and get a 10 minute transfer from the airport to Marina Apooiti.
When’s the best time to visit Tahiti?
Although these glorious islands experience great weather all year round, its winter season is usually drier and experiences milder temperatures. Visiting anytime between May and October means you will avoid the worst of the hot, humid and rainy weather while exploring the islands.
What can you do?
On a Tahiti sailing holiday, you’ll be mostly exploring the four islands that are downwind of Tahiti, known as the Leewards: Bora-Bora, Raiatea, Tahaa, and Huahine. Each island has its own flavour and attractions so do try and fully discover all they each have to offer.
Bora-Bora is a hotspot for stunning scenery and enchanting lagoons. A selection of pristine beaches provide some ideal snorkelling spots. With the small human population of the islands, the fish stocks are both bountiful and diverse. A local scuba diving excursion will get you even closer to the colour fish in their coral reef homes.On land, the world-famous Bora-Bora Yacht Club is just north of Vaitape Village. Stop off where travellers have been coming for centuries and enjoy a refreshing and well-earned drink at the bar.
Raiatea is a great stopping point for those looking for a taste of culture. It was once the religious focal point of the Leewards and has several sacred sites ready to be explored. To find Marae Taputapuatea, moor at Opoa and hike right from the dock. The archaeological site has a huge stone altar at its centre and stone figures, Tikis, that date back to 1000 A.D.
Uturoa is the only significant town on the island and is a great launching point for various excursions. Hire a jeep or hike to Mount Tapioi to take in the full views of these mountainous islands. Hiring bikes is a great way to take in the local culture and to visit the island’s oyster pearl farms. The preserved reef at Motu Ofetaro provides a glimpse of the diverse underwater wildlife. Tahaa is best known for its vanilla plantations throughout its bountiful valleys. Haamene Bay houses the Hibiscus restaurant for some laid-back evening hospitality. There’s also a hiking trail through the forests of Tahaa via Mount Taira and over into Hurepiti Bay.
As you can see, on each of the islands, a rich array of experiences awaits you. From kayaking through tropical forests to watching local artists display their handiwork, there is something for everyone in Tahiti.
To learn more about Tahiti, read our guide cruising itinerary to a Moorings charter in Tahiti.
Want more advice or help booking your perfect trip? Talk to a Holiday Planner to craft your unforgettable Moorings holiday on 033 0332 1506, contact us or explore each of our destinations in more detail.
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