A Compact Tropical Retreat
As you approach this French Polynesian island, you may genuinely think your eyes are deceiving you. Youll wonder how brilliant shades of turquoise, sapphire and indigo can all coexist to form such a luscious lagoon, matched only in its beauty by the blindingly white ring of sand and majestic mountain peaks at its centre. Formed from the remnants of an extinct volcano, Bora Bora appears to be of another world. Bora Boras perfect panoramas are further enhanced by pretty sand-edged motu and rainforest-covered ridges, while its fabulous coral reef is a joy to explore.
Cruise Line Announces Cruises To Bora Bora And Tahiti In 2022
A cruise line has announced new deals on cruises in 2022 to Bora Bora, Tahiti, and the French Polynesia that will visit some of the most beautiful islands in the world.Paul Gauguin Cruises will offer a series of seven, 10, 11, and 14 night cruises in the South Pacific on The Gauguin. The Gauguin has been rated one of the best small cruise ships in the world and the cruise line is now offering 30% off cruises.
The Gauguin will also be returning to Fiji in 2022, offering 12-night and 13-night Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands itineraries. These comprehensive voyages follow in the wake of explorers, encompassing the exquisite Society Islands, home waters of The Gauguin, and the Cook Islands with its unique culture and exquisite lagoons.
Other highlights include sailing across the International Date Line, a rare visit to the Kingdom of Tonga, and the paradisiacal Fijian islands.
Ports of call on the voyages are Papeete, Tahiti Moorea, Society Islands Tahaa , Society Islands Bora Bora, Society Islands Aitutaki, Cook Islands Vavau, Tonga Savusavu, Vanua Levu, Fiji Suva, Viti Levu, Fiji Beqa Island, Fiji and Lautoka, Viti Levu, Fiji.
To launch its 2022 voyages, Paul Gauguin Cruises is offering savings of 30% off standard cruise fares on all voyages, plus included airfare from Los Angeles.
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How Long Are Bora Bora Cruises
Cruises that stop in Bora Bora are typically 7, 10 or 14 days in length, with the exception of the longer Pacific cruises that venture to other island groups, such as Hawaii or New Zealand. Cruise ships stop in Bora Bora for 1 or 2 days. To make the most of your time here, see what our favorite things to do in Bora Bora are, and what we recommend to do from your Bora Bora cruise ship.
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Go On An Aqua Safari Helmet Dive
If youd like to explore Bora Boras spectacular underwater world without getting your hair wet, you can go on a fun Aqua Safari Helmet Dive. The only thing you need is your swimsuit. The aqua helmet, which has an oxygen pipe, is provided by the tour company.
You will literally walk around the sandy sea floor with a guide, surrounded by colorful fish and magnificent corals. Not only do you not need a diving certificate for this fun activity on Bora Bora, but you dont even have to know how to swim!
Best Places To Visit In Bora Bora
The modest harbour town on Bora Bora is where cruise ships dock. Its single street is home to a gingerbread-pretty church, a handful of small restaurants and several shops where you can buy curios and souvenirs to take home. But the street really comes to life on Sunday mornings when stalls appear selling everything from clams to doughnuts. Magasin Chin Lee is a major gathering spot for local residents and aa good place to soak up some island culture while quenching your thirst with a cold beer.
This Edenic stretch of white sand has been voted the best beach in the world and has graced the cover of many a glossy travel magazine. Its laid-back atmosphere – no one is selling sunglasses or massages means you can truly unwind and relax. Grab a Hinano beer from one of the beachside cafes and and flop on your own little slice of paradise until its time to return to your ship. Or take the short climb up the picturesque Pahonu Hill for amazing photo opportunities of the beach unfolding like a white ribbon below, surrounded by tropical landscapes and the harbour.
The Valley of the Kings
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Bora Bora Island Cruise Terminal
Cruise ships to Bora Bora Island dock at Vaitape – port town on the western coast.
There is no dedicated terminal, so cruise vessels anchor in Pofai Bay. Their passengers have tendered ashore to Vaitape. Near Bora Bora port pier you can find an office of Europcar and Avis. The local bus service is called Le Truck but it is not recommended because it is really irregular.
You can catch a taxi from the Vaitape port’s cruise ship pier. It usually costs $5. The most popular transport method on the island is bicycles. You can rent one for $15 daily. If you want to explore the lagoon, you can rent a motorboat.
The nearest airport to the cruise port is in Tahiti . From there, you can reach Vaitape by boat. Bora Bora has a ferry connection to Papeete .
Vaitape offers souvenir shops, ATM, Internet cafe, restaurants and post office within walking distance from the cruise ship tender pier.
What We Recommend For Your Cruise
For an indepth experience of romantic Tahiti and Her Islands, we recommend looking at the Paul Gauguin, Aranuii or Princess Bora Bora cruises. These spectacular sailings will immerse you in ambient sights, sounds, tastes, and fragrances of the real Tahiti spirit. Choose one of these Bora Bora cruises that fits your budget.
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Bora Bora Sights And Landmarks
Its hard for any visitor to choose what makes the strongest first impression upon arrival in Bora Bora: the needle-like peak of Mt. Otemanu in the islands center, soaring from emerald slopes, or the turquoise, sapphire and indigo hues of the waters that surround it. The island is encircled by a multihued lagoon that is protected from the open ocean by a ring of tiny barrier islands, or motus. In a sea of lush and magnificent islands, Bora Bora surely stands out for its beauty.
The grass huts in which the islands original Polynesians lived have been replicated over the shallow waters of the lagoon. Built on stilts and connected by boardwalks that emerge from the motus, these tiny structures have become the islands most iconic sight. The islands main town of Vaitape is home to most of the population. Just 20 feet above sea level, it is lined with markets brimming with fresh fruit and French pastries. Cars, bicycles, two-seater buggies and even motorboats can be rented for exploring the rainforest roads and crystalline lagoon.
Le Meridien Turtle Sanctuary
To visit Le Meridien Resort from a Tahiti cruise you need to pre-arrange with the resort. You must make a booking to swim with the turtles in their sanctuary, as it is done in a supervised way. This is one of the most inspiring Bora Bora activities. The marine biologist gives a fascinating talk at a set time in the morning.
To get there, take the cruise ship’s tender to Vaitape and then catch a taxi to the Le Meridien dock. Le Meridien’s shuttle boat will pick you up at the set time and drop you back at the end of your visit to the Turtle sanctuary. Ask the concierge to ring a taxi to meet you when the boat arrives back at the Le Meridien’s dock on the main island.
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What Youneed To Know
- Port Name & LocationShip will ANCHOR OFFSHORE at this port.
- Time ZoneTAHT Tahiti Time UTC/GMT -19 hours
- CFP Franc a.k.a. Pacific Franc
- Best Way to Get AroundRent a bike for the day or hire a taxi. For a bit of adventure, choose a shore excursion.
- Fun Fact #1Crystal clear blue waters make swimming and snorkelling exceptional here. Polynesian waters are home to over 800 species of fish. 20 dolphin and whales species live here year-round or stay for a few months in these waters.
- Fun Fact #2A resort on Bora Bora established a sea turtle sanctuary in 2000. It’s a scientific observatory where visitors can learn, observe and even swim with sea turtles.
- Fun Fact: LandmarksMount Otemanu is a jagged remnant of an ancient volcano that rises up to a sharp point at 2,385 feet from the surface of a turquoise blue lagoon.
Lunch At The Hilton Nui Bora Bora
The Hilton Nui is on a volcanic motu close to the main town of Vaitape. It’s one of the easiest resorts to get to on a Bora Bora Cruise because the Hilton has regular boat shuttles straight to Vaitape, for it’s guests. To visit the resort you will need to pre-organize with the Hilton. They welcome visitors for lunch or dinner, and a swim in their beautiful infinity pool set on the beach. Try a vanilla sundae. Savoring these ice-creams on the beach is another of those unforgettable Bora Bora activities that we look forward to going back for!
Their hotel shuttle leaves from a little pier behind the Robert Wan pearl shop in Bora Bora. This is a very short walk from the main Vaitape dock. They will pick you up . After your visit, purchase shuttle tickets from reception, before you catch the boat back to the Robert Wan Pier.
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Choose The Right Bora Bora Cruise For You
The cruise companies offering the best Bora Bora cruises are the Paul Gauguin, Aranui V and Princess Cruises. They offer dedicated Tahiti cruises that visit Bora Bora and other exotic Tahitian Islands.
All of these Bora Bora cruises are on small cruise ships, so there is a delightful romance to their cruising style. Life-time friendships are created in the dining room on more intimate cruises. You’ll get to know your captain and receive VIP favors from the friendly staff.
Other cruise companies, sail through Tahitian waters, stopping at Bora Bora while on longer, transpacific cruises.
Sightseeing In Bora Bora
A wide range of excursions and activities are available to visitors across the island of Bora Bora. Tourists can try their hand at fantastic range of water sports along the islands stunning coastline including swimming, snorkelling, kite-boarding, jet skiing and sailing as well the chance to explore a range of superb scuba diving sites with professional local diving companies such as TopDive Scuba and Nemo World Scuba. For inexperienced divers and children over eight years of age, the Aquasafari is a fantastic option, allowing guests to view a fabulous variety of marine life without needing to earn a registered diving license. On land, Jeep Tours of the island can be arranged, transporting guests around Bora Bora to view the most inspiring scenery in the region. For those people with an interest in military history, these tours may include stops at ancient Polynesian ruins and relics from the Second World War. Other exciting excursion possibilities include:
Mount Pahia and Mount Otemanu
The twin peaked mountains of Bora Bora are a breath-taking sight, surrounded by lush forests and incredible wildlife, which makes a trip to the summit an essential part of any stay on the island. It is possible to reach the top on foot, but local Jeep Tours can transport guests to the peak conveniently.
Bora Bora Lagoonarium
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Shopping In Bora Bora
The island is home to several useful shops and stores in which visitors can buy any essential amenities, such as groceries or sun cream. The best place to find commercial shopping areas is in the Vaitape district of Bora Bora. The island is famous for its Black Pearls, which are native to the region and highly sought after across the world.
Cruises From Bora Bora
Bora Bora is an island in the Leeward group of the Society Islands of French Polynesia. The mysteries and romance associated with the words Bora Bora bring an almost mystical presence to the island it is arguably the most famous island in the world. Part of the allure has to be its almost unbelievable beauty. Two towering peaks of sheer black rock dominate the centre of the island and make an impressive backdrop to an assortment of blue waters that dazzle the eyes. Read more
Whatever one chooses to do, visitors will thoroughly revel in this wonderful Polynesian island paradise.
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Robert Wan Pearl Museum
Pearl pioneer Robert Wans Pearl Museum isnt only a place to learn about pearls. Here, you can buy them too.
The museum features myriad treasures, such as a copy of the rosary beads with 57 pearls that were presented to Pope John Paul II in 1987 and Charles II of Frances pearl-encrusted prayer book. Meanwhile, the retail section offers jewellery, single pearls and, of course, Tahitian black pearls of the highest quality and original designs. It also sells skin products with extracts of nacre, the mother-of-pearl shell. The museum provides free tours for groups of two or more. Let them know of your visit at least five days in advance.
Snorkel With Stingrays And Sharks
A shark and stingray snorkel safari is one of the most popular things to do in Bora Bora. This 3-hour excursion takes you to a motu on the other side of the lagoon, where the boat will drop anchor and youll have the amazing opportunity to swim among friendly stingrays and black-tip sharks. If you want to, your guide might even help you touch one of these harmless creatures.
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Its About Sustainable Development
Tahiti Tourisme say the move is part of a new cruise industry strategy that will ensure sustainability and inclusive development of tourism in French Polynesia. The number of turnaround cruises in Tahiti has doubled in the last 10 years. Cruising was worth USD167-million to the local economy in 2019, with more than 40,000 cruise passengers visiting French Polynesia.
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When To Go On A Bora Bora Cruise
You may not have a huge amount of choice as to when you take your Bora Bora cruise. If you want a particular itinerary you will have to go with the time of year it is on offer, and when it is available. The most popular cruises can sell out a year ahead of time, especially when there are special offers! Plan and book your cruise at least a year ahead of time, especially if you have your heart set on a particular cruise, and cabin style.
If you are flexible, watch for last minute special offers when a cruise has unsold cabins left. Be aware that although you might get the cabin at a special price, buying a last minute Tahiti airfare may cost you a lot more. Your good deal may not be all that cheap to take! Sometimes the stars do align and Air Tahiti Nui has a special on, so it’s worth a look.
Museum Of Tahiti And The Islands
If you want to learn more about Tahiti and French Polynesia, in general, the Museum of Tahiti and Her Islands in Punaauia is a good place to do so. Here, concise and easy-to-understand exhibits explore Tahitis geography and natural history, its pre-European culture, the effects of colonization and its natural wonders. There are displays in English, too. Must-sees include its collection of ritual items, canoes, tattooing equipment and statues of wood or stone depicting various divinities called tiki.
After you visit the museum, step outside to observe surfers on the water or Moorea beyond. Or, peruse the gift shop, which other visitors said was excellent.
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Islands Of Tahiti Position To Small And Medium
New cruise regulations come into force in French Polynesia from Jan. 1, 2022. According to Tahiti Cruise Club, they are as follows:
- favor year-round turnaround ships based in French Polynesia and of small and medium capacities
- allow transpacific repositioning of turnaround ships with the capacity of up to 2,500 passengers
- for transpacific cruises, limit the capacity of the ships calling in French Polynesia waters to 3,500 passengers. Calls of larger capacity ships put stress on maritime infrastructure, services , as well as on the environment, which is especially the case in remote islands. Tahiti, Moorea and Raiatea will be preferred islands calls for these large capacity ships, according to Tahiti Cruise Club
- refuse stopovers of very large capacity ships . Tahiti Cruise Club said that their capacity and size are not suitable for the destination.
According to a press release, this positioning is the result of a shared vision of sustainable and inclusive development integrated into the 2021-2023 recovery plan for French Polynesia, as well as in the tourism development strategy, “Fariiraa Manihini 2025.”
Because of the strategic location of French Polynesia in particular the Port of Papeete on the transpacific route exemptions may be granted to vessels of higher capacity in technical transit on the islands of Tahiti, Moorea and Raiatea. These three islands can provide a call service with suitable infrastructure, Tahiti Cruise Club said.