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Things to do in

French Polynesia

Our most recommended things to do in French Polynesia

Moorea: Whale and Dolphin Watching

1. Moorea: Whale and Dolphin Watching

Tick an item off the bucket list with this incredible experience: an up-close encounter with humpback whales. Swim with these gentle giants and other marine life on a private tour in a stunning French Polynesian lagoon. Known as the best place in the world for an in-water experience with humpback whales and other wildlife species, French Polynesia is one of the rare places on earth where swimming with these beautiful giants is permitted. Observe them in their natural habitat, playfully interacting with one another. Learn about the whales' migration and watch them evolve in their natural habitat with experienced tour guides. Then, the experienced guides will brief you on proper safety guidelines and how to respect the animals before you dive into the water for an indescribable experience that you’ll remember for the rest of your life. On top of the whale watching, during the day tour, you will have the opportunity to observe spinner dolphins, pilot whales, pelagic sharks in the ocean. In the lagoon, you can observe sea turtles, different tropical fish species – and snorkel with stingrays and blacktip sharks.

Moorea: Sea Scooter Snorkeling Tour

2. Moorea: Sea Scooter Snorkeling Tour

Take a swim at one of the best coral reefs on Moorea. Enjoy your experience in a more remote area far away from the crowds. Get some instruction on how to safely use your sea scooter and then push a button and feel the pull as you move effortlessly through the water. Let your guide point out the various species of marine life you'll see all around you in the bay. Have a chance to see stingrays, sharks, dolphins, and turtles. Keep an ear out for the sound of humpback whales. Enjoy a picturesque boat ride around the island with a professional underwater cameraman and photographer on board.

Bora Bora by Land and Sea: 4WD Safari and Snorkel

3. Bora Bora by Land and Sea: 4WD Safari and Snorkel

Benefit from pickup at your hotel, or Vaitape pier, and then travel along the mountain roads of Bora Bora by open-sided 4WD vehicle to get panoramic views. Follow a 20-mile circuit around the island, and stop to look at the lagoon from spectacular lookouts, such as Matira Point, the Faanui Cannon, and Amanahune Bay. Learn about the military relics left by US troops after World War II. Marvel at the volcanic rock formations from the ancient caldera, and watch local artisans making coconut oil and tie-dye sarongs at a crafts workshop. Sample tropical fruits at a plantation, and enjoy a delicious lunch at the iconic Bloody Mary’s restaurant with a quirky interior of tiki torches and palm-trunk seats. Spend the afternoon on a boat cruise of the lagoon and search for stunning stingrays and blacktip sharks. Then, snorkel around the coral gardens and marvel at the colors of the tropical fish. The approach here is focused on respect for marine life, ensuring a great experience whilst protecting the flora and fauna (no feeding of sharks, and protecting the coral). Marine life is well represented, but spotting an animal presence cannot be guaranteed

Bora Bora: Island Tour and Mountains Getaway by Quad Bike

4. Bora Bora: Island Tour and Mountains Getaway by Quad Bike

After a quick initiation on how to drive your quad, cross Vaitape, the city center of Bora Bora, that leads you directly onto the plateau of Amanahune for a superb view of the fifty shades of blue of the beautiful lagoon. You will then head to the legendary Matira Beach and the famous restaurant Bloody Mary's. After several passages on the main road, take a small off-road path that will lead you to the Rock of Anau with a magnificent view of the hotels located on the islets and also a surprising view of the mythical Mount Otemanu. Next, visit another superb viewing point where you’ll discover the first vestiges of the Second World War. Then, drive to a village for a fun stop to see how a pareo is made. The wraparound skirt is not only considered a symbol of Polynesian culture in terms of clothing, but also of artistic expertise. Continue on to a tasting of exotic fruits and coconut water where your guide will present a “coco show” demonstration and lesson on the coconut. You’ll also enjoy a 5-minute stop at the entrance of the Faanui Valley, another incredible viewing point.  To end our tour, take in the mythical place considered to be one of the most beautiful points of the island, the Faanui Canon lookout. Contemplate the lagoon and Faanui Bay with an incomparable panorama making for an unforgettable memory of your time on Bora Bora.

Bora Bora Adventure Day: 4X4 and Jet Ski with Lunch

5. Bora Bora Adventure Day: 4X4 and Jet Ski with Lunch

Begin your day of adventure on Bora Bora with pickup at your hotel or the cruise port; alternatively, meet your guide and group at Vaitape Pier. Climb into an open-sided 4x4 vehicle for a trip around the volcanic island on rugged mountain roads. Complete the entire 20 mile (32km) circumference of the island, listening to your guide's commentary on the way. Make stops at several lookout points, including Amanahune Bay, Faanui Canon, and East Matira. Snap photos of sweeping views and check out some rock formations made by Bora Bora's ancient caldera.  Stop at a local plantation to see tie-dye sarongs and coconut oil being produced, you'll also have the chance to sample some tropical fruits before heading to Bloody Mary's for lunch. This popular island hangout serves local delicacies as well as sandwiches, burgers, and seafood.  After lunch, get views of the island by sea on a two-hour jet ski tour. Explore the sparkling bays and get views of Mt. Otemanu, stopping on the way for a coconut husking demo and a chance to go swimming. End your tour with drop-off back at your hotel or the cruise port.

Mo'orea: Guided ATV Nature Tour

6. Mo'orea: Guided ATV Nature Tour

On this adventurous ATV excursion, discover the beautiful island of Mo'orea and learn its legends from your guide. Jump on your vehicle and start out on the roads, crossing rivers and fruit plantations. Pass the agricultural high school and sprawling pineapple fields. Depending on what’s open, you may be offered a free tasting of local products.  Then, head towards the Belvedere and enjoy the amazing views of the Cook's and Opunohu Bays. Head to the Rotui juice factory and distillery, where you can enjoy a tasting (depending on the day).  If you’ve selected the 3.5-hour option, at this point you’ll discover one of the most beautiful viewpoints of the island, the “Magic Mountain”. Finally, take the tracks across the fields to return to Opunohu Bay. Admire the magnificent panoramic views of the Bay and north coast before returning to your meeting point for some rest and a complimentary drink.

Moorea Safari Tours: 4x4 Land Tour

7. Moorea Safari Tours: 4x4 Land Tour

This Moorea safari tour will introduce you to this picturesque island, dotted in tropical vegetation and home to beautiful locals and wildlife. This tour is a fantastic opportunity to grab some truly memorable holiday snaps, so don't forget to bring your camera.  Start with a 4WD tour by open-air safari truck, stopping at several lookout points along the way. Learn about the local culture from your guides throughout the day. Enjoy a half-day tour of Bora Bora by land and sea, with lunch. During the day you'll also get to visit a local workshop to try local jam, pineapple fruit and see a colorful coral garden with a multitude of tropical plants. This tour will also help you gain some insights into the traditions of the Moorea people from your expert guide. Throughout the day, you will see sights like the Volcano crater, the Tahitian temple, Rotui lookout, Magic Mountain, the Belvedere lookout, fruit plantations, Two Bays, the tropical garden and the juice factory.

Bora Bora Jet Ski Tour

8. Bora Bora Jet Ski Tour

Start your Jet Ski tour of Bora Bora with pickup from your hotel or the Vaitape pier. Then settle onto your Jet Ski, snap on a life jacket and listen as your guide provides a safety briefing before speeding away on your water adventure. Zoom across the crystal-clear lagoon past Bora Bora’s postcard-perfect water bungalows. Get a look at yachts and sailboats, and cruise by the emerald-draped hillsides of Mt Otemanu, the island’s tallest peak at 2,385 feet (727 meters) high.  Your guide stops at two locations where you can jump into the turquoise water for a refreshing swim and soak up the breathtaking tropical scenery. Hear about French Polynesian culture as your knowledgeable guide points out island landmarks and treats you to a coconut husking demonstration. You can select whether you want to ride solo or double. All of the Jet Skis are well-maintained to ensure a safe and thrilling ride. Your 2-hour expedition concludes with a return to your selected hotel or the pier.

Bora Bora: Private Underwater Scooter Experience

9. Bora Bora: Private Underwater Scooter Experience

Have a unique diving experience and see the beautiful marine life on a 30-minute dive in the Bora Bora Lagoon. Admire fish, coral, and the sandy seabed. Dive at one of the prime spots of the lagoon without any experience as this activity is accessible to non-swimmers. Get a briefing from your expert instructor and throughout the activity, float with a surface buoy at a depth of 10 meters. Choose to share your underwater scooters with another person and be able to laugh and talk freely inside the cockpit.

Bora Bora: Quintrex 13' Boat Rental

10. Bora Bora: Quintrex 13' Boat Rental

Rent a boat and travel to a motu, or reef iselt, and spend a relaxing day visiting some of the most beautiful sights in Bora Bora at your own pace. Visit the coral garden behind the Sofitel Private Island, Matira Beach, sand banks, and observe rays and sharks directly from the boat. From the lagoon, take in one of the best views of Otemanu Mountain. Your host will provide you with a short briefing on how to navigate your boat and will give you the best tips for possible itineraries, including a detailed map to take aboard.

Other Sightseeing Options in French Polynesia

Want to discover all there is to do in French Polynesia? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about French Polynesia

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 123 reviews

Our guide Gerald was entertaining and knowledgeable. He showed us the spectacular scenery of Moorea while informing us of both ancient traditions and modern life. He showed us how to identify the local plants and fruits and, if we ever find ourselves stranded on a coconut island, a most effective way to open these precious resources with the simplest of tools. Highly recommended.

Nico led an incredible tour. My husband, son and I had a wonderful time and were up close to pet sting rays, see sea turtles and incredibly beautiful fish. Nico is a “marine life whisperer” as sting rays follow him around and he is very knowledgeable. Great tour - I strongly recommend.

So much fun! Our guide went above and beyond to make this experience the best! Well worth the price! Highly recommend :)

Jarad was ABSOLUTELY “AMAZING!” He was extremely knowledgeable and went above and beyond to ensure we had a good time!

Jean and Ally were spectacular. This jet ski 2 hour tour was amazing.