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Moorea, French Polynesia
Moorea, French Polynesia is the most beautiful place I’ve ever been in my life. Plus, staying at over-the-water bungalows in Moorea was a dream come TRUE for me! I’ve always dreamed about having a romantic honeymoon in a bungalow, but Ryan and I got married at 22 when we were both in college- so not very realistic. Even though we had an awesome honeymoon in St. Lucia, and I wouldn’t trade that for anything!
About 6 months after our unforgettable wedding and honeymoon, my mother-in-law surprised us with a trip here over Christmas. I freaked! Our trip was with Ryan’s whole family, so maybe not quite as romantic as I dreamed :P, but definitely even more fun. We experienced almost every tour available on the island, & had an absolute blast on this magical and breathtakingly beautiful place. Here’s what we’ve decided you definitely shouldn’t miss.
The Top 5 Experiences Not To Miss
5. Scuba Diving: Mo’orea is known for their impressive reefs and the chance to scuba dive with sharks! While diving, we saw a lemon shark (what the island is famous for), blacktip shark, some manta rays, sea turtles, and tons of fish! Trust me, you won’t be disappointed and it’s worth building up the courage to do (I am super claustrophobic and scared of diving, but I made it through and loved that I did it (mostly just at the end lol)) We dove with Topdive and it was a great experience- they were very accommodating, flexible, and patient with our needs!
4. Snorkel off your dock (or beach): If you are staying in Mo’orea and are staying in an over-water bungalow- soak it up! This is very possibly a once in a lifetime opportunity, and something not many people get to do in their lives (I might be stating the obvious here, but it’s an important point)! Make sure to take advantage of it. We stayed at the Hilton, and there was coral and fish everywhere!
Even if you aren’t staying in the overwater bungalows, you can still swim out from the shore and have the same experience! Click here for a link to The Hilton we stayed at. It’s so fun to jump off the dock and see some beautiful reef and fish. Plus, the water is so shallow you can stand most of the time! Make sure you only do this during the day though… at night sharks and barracuda liked to come into the shallow waters- see the video below… I’d save swimming with the sharks for during the day (see #1).
Here’s a video of the sharks surrounding the bungalows at night!
3. Jet Ski Tour The jet ski tour was an awesome and adventurous way to see most of the island from the ocean. French Polynesia has the prettiest water I’ve ever seen. You definitely won’t be disappointed by the views of the clear baby blue water beneath your feet with green mountains in the background. During the tour, we were able to swim with sharks and stingrays and dive down to see monuments that the locals put in the water. It was an awesome tour and intense- they definitely didn’t make us ride slowly on those jet skis! I had to hang on for dear life… & Ryan’s brother even flipped the jet ski and fell in!
2. ATV Tour The ATV tour was so much fun!! At first, I was low key dreading the 105-degree heat in the middle of the sunny day, but the heat was worth it! We saw pineapple fields and vanilla greenhouses tasted the BEST pineapple juice ever and sampled some local jams. We also got to witness the beautiful ocean and green island from the mountains- the lookout points were unbelievable. The jet ski and ATV tour was actually a package deal, though you can definitely only do one or the other separately. But hey, go big or go home right!? Click here to check out the combo package we had.
1.Swim with the sharks and stingrays!! This was, without a doubt, the highlight of our trip. We loved it so much that we went twice. Jumping into shark-infested water is extremely intimidating, but there are other people in the water as well… and they haven’t died or been rushed to the small island hospital… so you jump in too! And the experience is exhilarating.
There is nothing like being surrounded by stingrays and sharks in their natural habitat. You begin to question how this is even possible? You’re swimming with sharks, outnumbered by them, and everything is perfectly fine? And fun? And then all of a sudden, you feel something swipe up against your back. You turn around and it’s a 4-foot long STINGRAY. Just trust me, you don’t want to miss this experience. And bring a waterproof camera/go pro/someway to document your encounter with some of the ocean’s predators. Check out more information about this epic experience here.
Long story short, this island is absolute paradise. Mo’orea is honestly the most beautiful island I’ve been to. What’s the prettiest island you’ve ever been to? Would you swim with sharks? Comment below, I’d love to hear from you!