Enjoy the ultimate French Polynesia holiday on this three week trip to paradise. Discover three different archipelagos – the Society Islands, the Tuamotu Islands and the Marquesas Islands. Hike the valleys of Tahiti, learn about local history in Hiva Oa and admire the archaeological and cultural history of Nuku Hiva. Snorkel with colourful fish in the clear water of Moorea, stroll along the white sands in Tikehau and taste fresh poisson cru on the motus of Huahine. Finish your trip with a stay in an overwater bungalow in Bora Bora – this holiday is the perfect combination of different islands and styles of travel if you want to really get under the skin of beautiful French Polynesia.
This itinerary can be tailored to suit your requirements; please contact one of our consultants to start planning your dream trip.
Depart the UK from your chosen airport.
On arrival in Tahiti, you’ll be met and driven to your hotel, where you’ll check in for two nights.
Enjoy your first day in French Polynesia in Tahiti - spend your day wandering along a black sand beach, hiking one of the several volcanoes that offer amazing views and jumping into the clear waterfalls to cool off. If you want to explore further, why not book a helicopter tour over the island - it's a fantastic way to see the lush interior from a unique perspective. If you want to add this, just ask.
This morning you’ll be driven back to the airport for the flight to Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands. These remote islands are some of the most unique in French Polynesia. When you arrive, you’ll be taken to your hotel, checking in for three nights.
You’ve got two full days to explore this unique island, starting from Atuona, the second largest village in Marquesas. The impressionist Paul Gauguin lived here and created some of his best work. You can visit the colonial store where he shopped, see a replica of his infamous “Maison du Jouir” and explore the adjoining museum.
As you walk uphill, you’ll have sweeping views of the harbour. In the cemetery at the top of the hill, beneath a large frangipani tree, you’ll find a tombstone with these simple words: Paul Gauguin 1903. Nearby, you’ll also see the grave of Belgian singer-composer Jacques Brel, another famous European who also was seduced by Hiva Oa and died in 1978.
After breakfast, you’ll be taken to the airport for the short flight to Nuku Hiva, another of the Marquesas Islands. On arrival, you’ll be driven to your hotel and check in for three nights.
The small population of Nuku Hiva in the far northern Marquesas Islands are said to be the best craftsmen in the Pacific. They create beautiful art, carvings and tattoos that tell stories of their island. The archaeological history of Nuku Hiva is fascinating, and the culture here has a distinctive difference to the rest of French Polynesia. The Marquesas have their very own language and local cuisine as well as a rich history of myths retold in songs and dances.
You have 1.5 days of touring included here – on your first day you’ll head out to visit the villages of Taiohae and Koueva in a 4WD vehicle, exploring the nearby archaeological sites and the Artisan’s Fare, where the locals sell their products, before spending the afternoon relaxing and enjoying your hotel. On your full day, you’ll go further, touring the north shore and learning about the history of the islands, taking in the vast views over the rugged bays and enjoying a fresh Marquesan lunch.
After breakfast, you’ll be leaving the Marquesas Islands – you’ll hop on a flight back to Tahiti, before catching the 30 minute ferry over to Moorea, a beautiful heart shaped island with lots to explore and discover. Check into your hotel for three nights and head to the beach.
With three nights to enjoy lush Moorea, you’ll have plenty of time to kick off your shoes and relax. Alternatively, if you're feeling energetic, you can get out and discover this beautiful island. Moorea is a green wonderland waiting to be explored. Take hikes along steep cliffs, swim in the bright blue lagoon where colourful fish and rays dance through the water and stretch out on unspoilt beaches that will blow you away. On Day 11, we’ve included an ATV tour of Moorea – it’s the perfect way to explore the island with a bit of adventure thrown in too!
After breakfast, you’ll be taken back to the port for the short ferry ride back to Tahiti, before heading to the airport for your flight up to Tikehau. Landing on this spectacular island will show off the unique landscape of the atoll, with the vast lagoon stretching out to the horizon – you can spend the next few days exploring under the water.
Diving and snorkelling are popular activities on Tikehau with sightings of reef sharks and manta rays almost commonplace here. The vast populations of colourful fish including lionfish, clownfish and parrotfish are the main attraction here and they inhabit an underground wonderland you’ll be keen to explore.
You can take a scenic bike ride around the main islet and visit the picturesque village of Tuherahera, rich in hibiscus and bougainvillea. The near uninhabited north-eastern side of the island is ripe for exploring; you can head to the long pink beach on the east and snorkel right out from one islet to the next. This remote wonderland is a world away from the crowds of Tahiti, and provides the ultimate Polynesian escape.
This morning, you’ll head back to the airport for your flight to Huahine in the Society Islands, which you’ll reach via a short stop in Tahiti. When you arrive, you’ll be driven to your guesthouse on one of Huahine’s many peaceful beaches.
On your first day in Huahine, we’ve added a full-day tour around the lagoon. During the trip, you’ll learn how to crack open a coconut, how to make poisson cru (the national dish – raw fish with lime juice), and how to tie a sarong. You’ll snorkel alongside stingrays, blacktip reef sharks and clouds of silvery fish before eating freshly barbecued seafood with your feet dangling in the warm water. It’s a wonderful way to spend the day and get to see the best of the lagoon.
The second day is yours to enjoy the island, whether you want to go snorkelling again or relax on the beautiful beaches.
After breakfast, you’ll fly to the iconic island of Bora Bora, the final stop on your tour of French Polynesia. Settle into your hotel for three nights and head for the beach to sip a drink while you watch the sun set.
You now have two full days to explore the world-famous island of Bora Bora. Spend your time discovering this volcanic island and its stunning turquoise lagoon. The clear water is perfect for snorkelling and provides excellent diving, as well as the opportunity to see manta rays and reef sharks in their natural environment.
During your stay, you can explore the lagoon by yacht, canoe or glass-bottomed boat. On Day 20, we’ve included a cultural tour of the island – you’ll head out on a large outrigger canoe to explore the lagoon, stopping at 3 different snorkelling stops before spending the afternoon learning how to weave and eating a delicious lunch with your feet in the turquoise water. If you want to book any other tours here, ask, and we can include them in your holiday. One of the most romantic places on earth, your time in Bora Bora will certainly be memorable!
After breakfast, you’ll be taken by boat back to the airport for your flight to Tahiti, where you’ll connect onto your international flight home.
The best time to visit French Polynesia is during the dry winter period between May and October when the weather is fresher, and there is much less rainfall. From November to April temperatures rise and the summer rainy season begins, bringing humid, cloudy weather and lots of rain. Over this period, it’s not uncommon to experience brief violent storms or rains lasting a few days at a time. Peak season is July and August, as well as Christmas and the Easter school holidays so expect prices to be at a premium.
This itinerary is purely a suggestion and can be tailor-made to your requirements, so please contact us with your dates and requests, and we’ll put together a bespoke quotation for you.