Plan a Dreamy Honeymoon in Tahiti

French Polynesia is synonymous with honeymoons, thanks to its natural beauty that is simply otherworldly. 

outrigger canoe
Photo Credit: Tahiti Tourisme

There are the marquee activities — eating just-picked pineapple, getting a coconut oil massage, splashing in blue ombré lagoons and kicking back in an overwater villa. And let’s not forget floating among it all — a boat is an excellent way to see this mystical place. 

Come Sail Away

No shirt? No shoes? Not only is that not a problem on a 59-foot TradeWinds catamaran, it’s practically the company motto. Savor sunrise with fresh coffee from the dolphin seats (those on the bow) then watch cotton-candy clouds envelop saw-toothed mountain peaks and stargaze from deck as you sail between Raiatea, Bora Bora and Taha’a. Activities include local song-and-dance lessons and swimming stops. Do a drift snorkel between two small motus (islands) or take a kayak or paddle- board out directly from the boat. And savor locally inspired, first-rate cuisine. The tuna with vanilla rum sauce is a standout. Boat buyouts are available (seven-day sails start at $7,200 per couple)

tradewinds tahiti
Photo Credit: Stephane Mailion

Meals on Wheels 

The food truck phenomenon has made its way to paradise. Parked at the Papeete wharf, Les Roulottes (converted vans) serve up inexpensive plates and plenty of people watching (of both the local and tourist variety) daily. Even if a capital city stay is not on the agenda, a long layover and short taxi ride from the airport equal water-view picnics of fresh fish and fries, roast pork, pizza, Chinese food or crêpes.

fresh fruit tahiti
Photo Credit: Stephane Mailion

Golden Anniversary

Three California transplants turned hoteliers known as the Bali Hai Boys changed bucket lists forever when they built the first three overwater bungalows in French Polynesia in 1967. Half a century later, 22 resorts across seven islands offer the thatched-roof villa suites. The newest property, the Conrad Bora Bora Nui, upped the ante with a two-story version that spoils with a hot tub and personal pool on one of two patios. It’s hard to beat night swimming directly off your deck or breakfast delivery via outrigger (room rates start at $500 a night).

conrad bora bora nui
Photo courtesy of Conrad Bora Bora Nui

Tropical Takeaways

Excursions to a pearl farm and the Vallée de la Vanille vanilla plantation, where you can also grab the homegrown and harvested cure-all tamanu oil, will cover most souvenir needs. But for those looking for a token to remember the trip that may even outlive your memories, try a tattoo made with traditional wood and bone tools and tapping techniques like the ones done by Moorea Tattoo’s James Samuela. in ancient tahitian culture, skin art indicated genealogy, wealth, strength and social standing.

Fun Fact: French is the official tongue, but show locals the love using te roa instead. Originally an oral-only language, it has just 16 letters and about 1,000 words.