Exploring the many islands of French Polynesia, I discovered again a place that you could easily call a paradise... It's the "sister island" from Tahiti, just a few miles in front of Papeete and is called Moorea.
Moorea is the closest island to Tahiti and well known to be a beautiful place to visit. We spent our last holidays there and it was a fantastic trip.
This island has something unique as it is still the traditional Polynesian island without any big city and people living in harmony with nature, but in the same time it is also one of the best touristic attractions in Polynesia. How is this possible? Well, the local authorities managed to have enough touristic infrastructures with hotels, family pensions and many activities around the island but in the same time they put as a priority to preserve the island from massive tourist invasion and avoiding to transform the place in a huge “tourist parc” where tradition can only survive as a folklore show for visitors…
Making the perfect compromise between touristic activity and preservation of traditional identity isn’t for sure a easy way but perhaps the best thing to do: tourism brings money and is an important economic income, but you should not sell your soul to the devil and forget what you are and where you’re from.
Moorea island seems to have found this way: there are a lot of things to do on this island, there’s no difficulty to find hotels and family pensions of good quality and for a good price, but in the same time you have the feeling to be in a very savage and natural place, in a preserved nature and traditional way of life. We really loved the mood of this island!
We started our visit with a island tour in a little buggy car, it was very funny and allows you to go almost anywhere on the island. A great spot is to go to the exact center of the island where you have an unique panorama over the superb “Cook” and “Opunohu” bays. From there you also can make a walk in the forest and follow the way to the ancient sacred places called “marae”. Really a great excursion!
After a few days in a pension located on the Cook bay, we moved to another hotel directly located on the “Tipanier” beach, on the most beautiful places of the island. It’s located on the north-west corner of the island and it’s the place where you can find the most amazing sand beaches of Moorea. You can spend the whole day relaxing on the beach or go out for a snorkeling or diving session in some impressing underwater spots.
Well there’s nothing more to say, it’s just on of the most beautiful islands I ever visited and I recommend it to any visitor of French Polynesia!