Paradise at your fingertips: Why The Islands of Tahiti should be kiwis’ first trip once international travel opens
As the date when New Zealanders can finally travel internationally is getting closer, it might be difficult to decide where to travel first. That is why it’s important to remember how close The Islands of Tahiti are and how kiwis will literally have paradise at their fingertips as soon as flights kick off in a few months.
The national flag carrier Air Tahiti Nui has announced that flights will restart on the 3rd July 2022 and Air New Zealand has announced they are restarting flights to Papeete on the 6th July, 2022.
With 118 equally as beautiful islands to choose from, there’s an abundance of accommodation options from luxurious overwater bungalows, guesthouses run by locals, catamarans and boutique cruise lines, and even private islands, The Islands of Tahiti are uniquely well-suited for travel in a post-pandemic world. Travellers visiting the islands can feel confident in choosing the destination for their next trip, knowing that they can truly relax amid pristine beaches, intimate and secluded bungalows, and feel as isolated as Robinson Crusoe.
Some suggestions ranging from budget to luxury:
- As the overwater villa originated in The Islands of Tahiti it’s no surprise that there’s an abundant number of resorts with this feature, with some of the more popular ones being the Four Seasons Bora Bora, The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort, Le Taha’a by Pearl Resorts or Manava Moorea Resort
- Maitai Lapita Village: Slightly different option to an overwater bungalow located next to a serene lake in Huahine
- Motu Nao Nao & Vahine Island Resort: luxury resort on private islands far away from any crowds
- ELYT Floating Villa: first floating overwater villa launching in the region
- Tahiti Homes: vacation rentals in Moorea and Tahiti ranging from apartments in Papeete to private mansions
- Boutique cruising options such as Paul Gauguin, Aranui 5and Windstar
- Tetamanu Village, a guesthouse located right at the beach overlooking the lagoon in the remote Fakarava.
Activities in The Islands of Tahiti
While The Islands of Tahiti are typically known to be the ultimate romantic destination, with its overwater villas, azure-blue lagoons, lush forests and crystal white beaches, there’s so much more to experience in the destination that many probably aren’t aware of:
Activities that can be experienced in The Islands of Tahiti includes:
- horse riding across the spectacular landscapes in the Marquesas Islands or along white-sand beaches with the sun setting as your backdrop.
- hike or bike through the lush valleys and over hilltops where you’ll have a 360-degree panoramic view of the islands.
- canoeing on a traditional Polynesian outrigger that you put together yourself.
- soaring over the sea on a paraglider.
- quad biking or flying in a helicopter and land on a hilltop taking in the majestic view.
- known for its unparalleled water activities there’s a range of options which includes diving, snorkelling, surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, swimming with whales and manta rays, kite surfing and windsurfing just to name a few.
Culinary options in The Islands of Tahiti
Internationally renowned for their modern take on French cuisine with a strong Polynesian influence, culinary experiences in The Islands of Tahiti are like no other in the world. There’s a wide range of options from chic and elegant restaurants to local and casual eateries.
Some of the most traditional dishes include:
- Tahiti’s signature dish poisson cru which consists of raw tuna marinated in lime juice and coconut milk, mixed with diced vegetables.
- Chevreffes, another mouth-watering entrée of freshwater shrimp cooked with creamy coconut milk and vanilla.
- Poulet fafa, a chicken dish usually cooked in the ahima’a, a traditional oven of a hole dug in the ground covered with leaves and volcanic stones.
- For those who want to explore the local cuisine can opt to go on a food tour such as the Tahiti Food Tours led by the local Heimata Hall. On the Tama’a street food tour, Heimata will take you to the hidden culinary spots on the island that only the locals know of.