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Best Islands for Water Sports in French Polynesia

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It is easy to get your water sport adrenalin pumping in French Polynesia, where you can snorkel, dive, and surf to your heart's content. Whether you hop on a stand-up paddleboard and visit fish-filled lagoons in Moorea or kayak out to a motu in Raiatea, French Polynesia is paradise for water sports enthusiasts. Here are our favorite islands for aquatic adventures.
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Atoll Rangiroa, French Polynesia
Rangiroa doesn't have the dramatic peaks of islands like Bora Bora, but it does have a rival underwater scene. While snorkeling above the reefs surrounding the largest atoll in French Polynesia’s Tuamotu archipelago, you’ll experience...
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Ra'iātea, French Polynesia
I launched my kayak from the edge of Raiatea Lodge Hotel, which rents the boats free to guests. Here you can have the unique experience of kayaking to a motu. Motus are small islands made up of coral and its derivatives. From Raiatea, one such...
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Poste restante, Fakarava 98763, French Polynesia
Fakarava's lagoon is majestic, with translucent blue waters filled with vibrant coral and tropical fish. In fact, Fakara is touted as the "mecca of diving" thanks to its waters rich with flora and big fauna. Enjoy a walk along its perimeter...
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Taking a plunge from our overwater bungalow was the start to yet another perfect day. We had a great time staying at the Intercontinental Moorea with our kids. The water is spectacular for swimming, snorkeling and all kinds of watersports. We all...
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Tikehau, French Polynesia
This oval-shaped atoll in the Tuamotu island group strung across the South Pacific Ocean some 300 kilometers from Tahiti is covered in pink and China white sand and surrounded by a jaw-droppingly beautiful turquoise, jade, and cerulean hued lagoon...
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Maupiti, French Polynesia
I love Maupiti, which is the smallest and most isolated of the Society Islands, and feels like an unblemished tropical playground, where tranquility trumps everything else and romantic love stories of deserted sparkling white-sand beaches...
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Bora Bora, French Polynesia
Encompassing 35 private villas on the Motu Onetahi coast of Marlon Brando's very own French Polynesian island, Tetiaroa, The Brando is arguably the most luxurious place to stay in the entire South Pacific country. All of the villas at this...
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Teahupo'o, French Polynesia
Tahiti is the birthplace of surfing, and the island offers a few excellent beginner breaks as well as one of the world's most powerful waves, Teahupo'o. To hone your surfing skills, visit the Tura'I Mataare Surf School in Paea, which offers both...
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Huahine, French Polynesia
Welcome to the vagina island, no joke (the rough English translation of the word Huahine is vagina). And although no one knows exactly where the name originated, historians think it has to do with the important role women played in the island's...
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French Polynesia
On a recent trip to research resorts, I had the opportunity to visit Tahiti, Moorea, Bora Bora and the island of Taha'a. All were fabulous places to explore, but my favorite stay was at the Five Star Taha'a Island Resort and Spa on the island of...