Moorea – The little sister to Bora Bora


Moorea view

 White sand beaches, turquoise water, overwater bungalows, and abundant sea life are just a few words to describe the island of Moorea.  Moorea is a small island located about a 30 minute ferry ride west of Tahiti in French Polynesia.  Although, not as famous as it’s big sister Bora Bora, Moorea has a magic all its own and is not to be overlooked on a trip to the South Pacific. 

The island is built around an extinct volcano whose terrain has been changed over time to a beautiful, lush, tropical landscape.  With two famous bays, Cooks Bay and Opunohu Bay, there is no shortage of postcard perfect vistas as you circle the island.  As if this is not enough, Moorea is also ringed by a coral reef teeming with wildlife that has created a shallow lagoon along the shoreline that displays more shades of blue than you can imagine.

Opunohu Bay

We were fortunate to spend 5 nights in this paradise at the Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa in a lagoon bungalow. Having seen the location of the other 4 resorts on the island, we felt that we had made the perfect choice in resorts.  The Hilton Moorea is a smaller resort, more of a boutique property, located in between Cooks Bay and Opunohu Bay in a very quiet location.  The lagoon in front of our bungalow was the perfect depth for hours of snorkeling as it ranged from 3-5 feet for hundreds of meters off the coastline. 

Hilton Moorea - Overwater Bungalows

View from our Lagoon Bungalow at the Hilton Moorea Resort

The snorkeling was the best that we have ever experienced with countless colourful tropical fish swimming right off the bungalow deck.  We were also fortunate to see sting rays and black tipped reef sharks (which we swam with in Bora Bora, read more here) from the other overwater bungalows.  This is a perfect resort for some relaxation and couple time with your significant other. 

Hilton Moorea pool

The pool at the Hilton Moorea

Hilton Moorea beach

The pristine beach at the Hilton Moorea

The service was amazing and the employees seemed to truly enjoy working at the Hilton Moorea.   Do not miss a visit to the Crepe bar one night for delicious crepes eaten on the decks overlooking the water below presented by the entertaining French chef.  If you are lucky, you may spot a sting ray or black tipped reef shark swimming below while you enjoy your meal.

Toatea Crepes & Bar at Hilton Moorea

Sharks at Toatea Crepes & Bar








The number one activity while on Moorea for us was definitely the snorkeling.  However, we also really enjoyed our Jeep 4×4 Safari into the heart of the island.  During this tour they take you on the back roads right into the centre of the now extinct volcano.  We were in Moorea in March which is right at the end of their rainy season, the mud was thick and the 4×4 was much appreciated as we bumped along in the back of the jeep.  It was an exciting ride!

Jeep safari on Moorea

Jeep safari on Moorea

Our favourite part of this incredible trip was the lagoon bungalow experience.  The Hilton Moorea has 3 different types of bungalows: garden bungalow, lagoon bungalow & overwater bungalow.  Our lagoon bungalow was half over land and half over the water.  Although not considered a true overwater bungalow, it was a nice way to get the overwater experience without the extra cost. 

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Bungalows

Hilton Moorea Lagoon Bungalows

We had the glass coffee table with viewing panel to the water below and we would often see fish swimming by under our bungalow.  We loved laying out on the loungers on our deck taking in the view and pinching ourselves that we were actually in this paradise.  When it was time to cool off with a dip in the ocean, we simply descended the stairs to the lower deck which had direct access via a ladder to the lagoon.  An added bonus on this deck was a fresh water to shower with which to rinse off after your dip in the warm tropical water.  For those who love snorkeling, this is the perfect experience as you can snorkel directly off your bungalow.  How cool!!!

Overwater Bungalows at dusk

Hilton Moorea Overwater Bungalows

Our once in a lifetime trip to French Polynesia and the island of Moorea was impeccable.  We would highly recommend taking the time to save your money to be able to experience these magical islands in the South Pacific.  We also visited Bora Bora while on this trip and had some amazing experiences there as well.  To read about accommodation recommendations in Bora Bora, click here.

What is your ultimate tropical paradise destination?


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3 Responses to Moorea – The little sister to Bora Bora

  1. Never been to Bora Bora and never heard of Moorea, but these beaches look just amazing. I’m speechless and I wanna go there right now!!
    Agness recently posted..5 Things to do to Travel in Malaga on the CheapMy Profile

    Agness December 8, 2012 at 10:53 am Reply
    • We had also never heard of Moorea before looking into our trip to Moorea. 🙂 We weren’t disappointed and I don’t think you would be either, Agness!!!

      evan&tracy December 8, 2012 at 8:14 pm Reply
  2. Pingback: 5 Things To Do in Bora Bora | Travels4Couples

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