Tahiti & Moorea

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ShermansTravel experts rely on years of collective travel experience to bring you the best money-saving tips for your vacation. We take a discerning look at all the attraction passes, public transportation options, and other local bargains to make sure you get the most bang for your buck while traveling.

Tahiti & Moorea Money-Saving Tips

Save on Meals

Food is quite costly on both islands; to save visit a local supermarket and bring back fruit, bread, and other snacks for breakfast or lunch.

Expect Expensive

Overwater bungalows are somewhat less pricey on Tahiti and Moorea than on Bora Bora (where the average is $800-$900/night), but don't expect to score one at a four-star property on Moorea for under $600/night and on Tahiti for under $400/night during high season. Travelers looking for the best moderate hotel room rates in French Polynesia will find them on the main island of Tahiti, where standard rooms at four-star resorts can dip as low as $150/night.

No Dictionary Required

French and Tahitian are the official languages, but you can easily get by with English at resorts and other tourist areas.

Water vs. Sand

Tahiti is more about its mesmerizing lagoons than its beaches, which are often narrow and manmade (at resorts). Sand varies from white to pink to black. Top honors go to black-sand Lafayette Beach on Tahiti and the strand that fronts the Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort on Moorea.

Make it a Stopover

If Australia or New Zealand is your final destination, Air Tahiti Nui frequently offers specially priced stopover deals in Tahiti for passengers flying on to Sydney or Auckland.

Look Up!

The night skies here are incredibly clear, especially above Moorea, where you’ll spot constellations as the only sound you'll hear is the gently lapping lagoon beneath you.

Learn a Few Words

The local alphabet has only 13 letters, so make use of them to say hello (ia orana) and goodbye (nana) in a singsong voice the way the Tahitians do. And offering a thank you (mauru’ uru) will certainly be appreciated.

Shake It Like a Local

The Heiva, a festival held each July in Papeete, is a draw for its thrilling and sensual dance-offs. If you are not visiting in July, most hotels offer Polynesian dance shows at least once a week; the InterContinental Resort Tahiti has one of the best, featuring dancers from Les Grands Ballets de Tahiti.

Try Poisson Cru

This addictive national dish is made from raw tuna or mahi-mahi marinated in lime juice and coconut milk.

Synchronize Your Watches

Tahiti is in the same time zone as Hawaii – three hours behind Los Angeles and six hours behind New York (except during Daylight Savings Time from November to March, when the difference is two hours and five hours, respectively).

Preview with Mutiny on the Bounty

The numerous retellings of this story insist that sailors of the HMS Bounty revolted after experiencing the hospitality of the sensual local women. Portions of both the 1962 Marlon Brando version and the 1984 Mel Gibson version were filmed on Tahiti, Bora Bora, and Moorea.

The Many Wonders of Monoi

You won’t want to leave without procuring a bottle of this local oil made from coconuts and tiare blossoms – it works as a moisturizer, hair tonic, massage oil, and insect bite salve. Pick it up at your hotel gift shop.

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