Bora Bora

Bora Bora - Mount Otemanu

Bora Bora is a picturesque island amongst the Society Islands in French Polynesia.  The geology of the islands around French Polynesia are unmatched in many parts of the world.  The formation of Bora Bora is believed to be the result of the type of volcanic eruptions that occurred during its formation as an island.  The main island is surrounded by a beautiful lagoon of many shades of blue that can only be appreciated when seen in person.  The lagoon is enclosed by a series of smaller islands, called motus and a coral reef that protects the lagoon form the harsh ocean currents.

Things that you MUST see/do:

Mt. OtemanuThe iconic centerpiece of Bora Bora.  Mt. Otemanu is the highest peak and towers over the rest of the island and surrounding motus.  You should be able to get wonderful views from any of the motus and it creates a spectacular backdrop (along with the lagoon) for any picture.  There are many trails and guided tours that go up the mountain if you are looking for a little challenge and are an active traveller.  From the top of the trails, you will definitely get some spectacular views.

The Lagoon –  The lagoon is the most spectacular aspect of the Bora Bora appearance.  Numerous changes in the depth of the water in the lagoon creates more different shades of blue than you will see almost anywhere else in the world.    Many tour options are available to see and explore the lagoon.  We recommend you take a tour that loops around the entire lagoon.

Get a “Black” Pearl – French Polynesia is known world-wide for the quality of its black pearls.  The pearls can come with many different tints to them (pink, green, blue, etc.).  Make sure you shop around, not for the lowest price necessarily, but for the pearl that is perfect for you.  There are many shops in and around Vaitape, the main town, that have pearls to shop for, so finding your favourite should be no problem.

Stay on a Resort on a Motu –There are resorts sprinkled throughout the entire lagoon.  Some are located on the main island, facing away from Mt. Otemanu towards the outer motus.  We would recommend staying in a resort that is on the outer motus that will allow the best views into the main island and the famous Mt. Otemanu.  Resorts on the outer motus which face into the main island include the Fours Seasons Resort, the Pearl Resort, Le Meridian Resort, the St. Regis Resort, and the Intercontinental Bora Bora Resort.  The Hilton Resort is also on a motu, however, it is not facing in towards the main island (although you can get views towards the main island from the higher points of the motu) but does afford unobstructed views of the open ocean.  This gives the Hilton resort an extra feeling of privacy as the water in front is not as busy with boat traffic as the lagoon side.  The resorts that are located ON the main island and do not have views of Mt. Otemanu are the Intercontinental Bora Bora Le Moana Resort (be careful as one intercontinental resort is on the main island and one is on a motu, you want the one on the motu), the Le Maitai Polynesia Bora Bora and the Sofitel Resort.

Snorkelling or Diving – The lagoon is also home to countless different types of sea life including many tropical fish, black tip reef sharks, sting rays and octupuses. Most of the tropical fish are not shy and will often swim right up to you.  Therefore, you should make some time in your trip to go snorkelling or diving.  There are many locations in the lagoon that are perfect for snorkelling.  Many locations are right on the beach by the resorts or you may decide to take a boat to some great locations like the coral gardens.  For those into diving, the locations in the lagoon are spectacular for you as well or you would like a tour that goes out beyond the coral reef into the open ocean for even more sea life.  If you are not inclined to go swimming, you can take a glass bottom boat tour of the lagoon that would allow you to see some of the sea life we have discussed

Relax by the water – One of the main reasons for a trip to Bora Bora is to enjoy the sunshine.  Therefore, you must spend some time relaxing in the sun.  This can be done in various ways in Bora Bora, like on the beach (where you have a lot of space between you and others around you), by the pool, on your balcony over the water, or in the garden bungalow yards by your private plunge pool.  There are many ways to do it, but the key is to sit back relax and enjoy the sunshine.

Travels4Couples highly recommended EXPERIENCES:

Take a Jet Ski Tour – You will not regret this decision.  This is a wonderful experience to have as a couple.  Hop on a jet ski together and have your guide lead you as you zoom around the main island.  The views are spectacular and it is so much fun to ride around on a jet ski.  When your tour guide tells you the faster you go, the easier it is to steer, you know you are in for a fun ride.  This tour can be booked after your arrival, which is a good idea, as you want to book the tour on a clear day to get the best sight seeing.  We were able to find out the weather forecast and book the day before we went.

Swim with the sharks and sting rays – Some boat tours will take you out to an area of the lagoon that is a common place to see black tip reef sharks and a second location that is a good spot for seeing sting rays.  At these locations you put on your snorkel equipment and hop in to swim with them.  Although you may be nervous swimming with sharks, once you are in the water and see them swimming so majestically, your fears just slip away.  The sharks will keep their distance as they swim around you, but they look so amazing moving through the water.  Sting rays tend to be a little more playful and interested in you.  They will come right up to you and check you out.  Do not fear, as they are not attempting to harm you, they are just curious.  As they move through the water you will be amazed at how magical they appear.  It truly seems like they are “soaring” through the water.  This is an experience not to be missed.

Lunch on  a private motu – There are many motus surrounding the main island, however, most of them have been developed by resorts and or private houses.  However, one particularly romantic experience for you and your loved one is to have lunch on a private motu.  Imagine sitting down to a meal with only you, your lunchmates and servers on the whole entire island.  You can take a walk around the motu while you wait for your lunch to be made, then sit and enjoy a wonderful meal.  These meals can be included in combination with other excursions like a lagoon cruise or do it on your own.

Travels4Couples #1 ROMANTIC thing to do in Bora Bora:

Stay in an Overwater Bungalow –There are few experiences in the world that match the extravagance you will experience in an overwater bungalow and there are only a few places where overwater bungalows exist.  Imagine staying in a bungalow that is larger than rooms in any other hotel we have been to.  Decorated with the highest quality furnishings.  You can look through your glass topped coffee table and see down to the lagoon water below (keep your eye out for fish swimming by).  When you want to relax in the sun, all you have to do is step outside you sliding glass door to your private balcony.  If you get too warm in the sun all you have to do is hop off your lower balcony and into the water below.  These bungalows provide you with the privacy you desire for your romantic getaway with your special someone.

More Articles on French Polynesia:

Taking Flight in Bora Bora

The Sea Life of French Polynesia in Photos