Paradise. Heaven. Eden and the ultimate exotic honeymoon location since the 1960s. French Polynesia is one of the most romantic honeymoon destinations on earth. Yes, it takes a little more effort to get there (particularly if you’re travelling from Europe) but when you arrive, it’s paradise found. Overwater bungalows, aquamarine ocean, powdery white sand, beautiful mountains and exotic flora and fauna. It’s one of the best destinations in the world for an island hopping honeymoon.
French Polynesia is an autonomous country of France. This remote paradise of 118 islands and atolls is sometimes known as Bora Bora or Tahiti. These are actually islands that are part of the French Polynesia archipelago. In short, Tahiti and Bora Bora are separate islands, part of the country French Polynesia. The islands are between Australia and South America in the South Pacific Ocean, south of Hawaii and northeast of New Zealand. The islands spread across two thousand kilometres and are made up of five island groups – The Society Islands, Tuamotu Archipelago, The Gambier Islands, The Marquesas Islands and the Austral Islands.
You might think about a French Polynesia honeymoon or a Bora Bora honeymoon wondering, is French Polynesia good for honeymoon? What is the best island for honeymoon? What’s the best time to visit French Polynesia? How much does a Tahiti honeymoon cost? How do you get there? Where to stay? How do you get around? Can you go all inclusive in French Polynesia? What are the best things to do in French Polynesia? What’s the difference between Tahiti and Bora Bora? We’ve got all the essential information you need to plan the perfect honeymoon in French Polynesia. Let’s take you to paradise with our Ultimate French Polynesia Honeymoon Guide.
Good to Know
Time Zone: GMT – 10
Language: French | Tahitian – English is spoken less fluently outside of the main tourist centres.
Currency: CFP / XPF Franc ₣
A few phrases in Tahitian:
Hi: Ia ora na
Thank you: Mauruuru roa
Visa Required: Most nationalities do not need a visa for French Polynesia for stays up to 90 days. You may need 6 months of validity on your passport and proof that you are leaving the country. iVisa.com can help if you need a visa.
Health: French Polynesia is a malaria-free country, but some vaccinations are recommended. We encourage you to visit the Center for Disease Control website for up-to-date travel vaccination recommendations or speak to a Tropical Medicine Specialist.
When to go
French Polynesia is a tropical destination where the temperatures are warm all year round (average temperature 25°C / 80°F). However, the country experiences a ‘wet’ and ‘dry’ season. The rainy season is from November to May. However, the wettest months are from December to February when you can expect occasional short downpours but plenty of sunshine too. During the wet season, occasional strong tropical storms and cyclones can occur.
The best time to visit French Polynesia for a honeymoon is from June to October during the dry season. The shoulder months of March, April, May & November are good times to visit too, because of the lower risk of adverse weather.
How to get there
Faa’a International Airport in French Polynesia (airport code: PPT) is located on the island of Tahiti, about 5kms from the capital, Papeete.
You can fly from the USA with multiple direct flights from Los Angeles (airport code: LAX – 8 hours 40 minutes) with Air France, Delta Air Lines, American Airlines, and Air Tahiti Nui. You can also fly from San Francisco (airport code: SFO – 8 hours 40 minutes) with United Airlines and FrenchBee, Seattle (airport code: SEA – 9 hours 30 minutes) with Air Tahiti Nui and Alaska Airlines and Oahu in Hawaii (airport code: HNL) with Hawaiian Airlines.
There are also flights from New Zealand’s Auckland (airport code: AKL – 5 hours) with Air New Zealand and Air Tahiti Nui. You can also fly from Paris’s with Air France (airport code: CDG) and FrenchBee (airport code: ORY). Travel time is 22 hours, 30 minutes. However, because of the travel distance, there will either be a technical stop or a plane change in either San Francisco or Los Angeles.
Once you arrive in Tahiti, to get to Bora Bora and further islands, you will have to take a domestic flight. Alternatively, you can take a ferry between some of the islands. See getting around and our French Polynesia Island Guide below for more information.
What to pack
Internet can be slow outside of your luxury hotels in French Polynesia, so book an unlimited Tahiti Wi-Fi connector, so you have the internet on the go.
When you arrive on the island of Tahiti in French Polynesia, you will need to take further flights to get to most other islands and hotels. Moorea is an exception. Air Tahiti (not to be confused with Air Tahiti Nui, the international airline mentioned above) has a handy flight air pass if hopping around multiple destinations with French Polynesia.
While there are multiple daily flights from Tahiti to the main Society Islands, for more off-the-beaten-track islands, there may only be a service a few times per week or even once a week. Be sure to check the schedule and book the less frequent routes early. Many islands will not have a direct flight between them, so you may also have to backtrack to Tahiti or connect on another island, so it’s worth checking the Air Tahiti website when flying to from island to island.
Getting around French Polynesia is not too difficult, but it can be expensive. You can arrange airport-to-hotel transfers through your hotel/resort or travel agent. There is no Uber and although transport is available in top tourist destinations like Tahiti, Moorea and Bora Bora, they are expensive. Plus, if your resort is across a lagoon, you’ll need to arrange with the hotel to get you there.
Most couples will base themselves in their hotel or resort and take day tours/excursions. However, hiring a vehicle gives you more freedom and on most of the Society Islands, you’ll find branches of Avis and Europcar. The islands are so small you’ll only need a car for a short period – usually 24-48 hours to see most of the top sites. Tahitians drive on the right side (so the same as the USA, Canada and mainland Europe).
Accommodation & Dining
There are plenty of accommodation options available in French Polynesia, from luxury resorts to more budget-friendly hotels and pensions. A pension is a locally owned boarding house, similar to a guesthouse or bed & breakfast. The quality if pensions can vary in terms of service and are usually basic, particularly on the lesser-explored islands. However, they are a fraction of the cost of a luxury resort. You’ll also find villa and bungalow accommodation available on VRBO and Airbnb.
For a truly romantic experience, we recommend the magical overwater bungalows that Bora Bora and Moorea are famous for. This heavenly room category is probably the reason you’ve been dreaming about a French Polynesia honeymoon, after all!
French Polynesia and Bora Bora resorts and hotels are a little different to the Caribbean and the Indian Ocean in that they are not all-inclusive*. The resort/hotel costs are usually based on a bed & breakfast, half board of full board*. If you’re staying on the popular tourist islands in a luxury resort, you may find eat mostly in your hotel, but there are local restaurants to explore too, so we’d recommend just booking a bed & breakfast rate. On lesser-visited islands, there will be small traditional restaurants and pensions will often provide some meals too.
Half Board – breakfast and dinner. Full board – breakfast, lunch and dinner.
French Polynesia Island Guide
The vast majority of tourists will only visit the three most popular islands, Tahiti, Moorea and Bora Bora in the Society Islands. However, there are other islands and island chains for intrepid honeymoon explorers who have a bit more time and want to dive deep into Polynesian culture and get off the beaten track. Where it’s a five-start luxury honeymoon getaway or Robinson Crusoe, back-to-nature experience, you’ll find it in these heavenly islands.
The vast majority of honeymoon couples who visit French Polynesia only visit the Society Islands. This heavenly archipelago can be separated into two geographical areas. Moorea, Tahiti and Tetiaroa make up the Windward Islands and Bora Bora, Huahine, Maupiti, Raiatea and Taha’a make up the Leeward Islands.
If you’re arriving in French Polynesia by air, then Tahiti is the island you will land on. It is the administrative and economic centre, home to 70% of the population and the capital Papeete. It’s a lush island with beaches, lagoons and waterfalls, plus plenty of accommodation options. You can take a 4×4 tour, go hiking and whale watching and take a half-day tour to Moorea. However, while it’s nice to spend a day or two on Tahiti to recover from your flight, most couples will want to get straight to the veritable paradises of the other islands, including Moorea and Bora Bora and beyond.
How to get to Tahiti: Fa’a’ā International Airport (airport code: PPT) is based five kilometres from Papeete. This is the main airport for international arrivals and departures and most inter-island flights.
Moorea (or Mo’orea) is an immaculate paradise island close to Tahiti (they’re around 10 nautical miles apart). Expect the turquoise waters, white sand beaches, and lush jungle landscapes you see on the postcard. The overwater bungalow concept originated at the Club Bali Hai Moorea in the 1960s (learn more about the history in this fascinating Conde Nast article).
You may just want to enjoy days of pure relaxation in one of the luxury resorts mentioned below. The marine life is some of the best on the planet so scuba divers will be in heaven. If you prefer to snorkel, you can spend your days splashing around the crystal-clear waters of the South Pacific’s warm lagoons. Swim with wild dolphins and go whale watching. The hiking opportunities are worth tearing yourself away from your luxury resort. Explorers will love the trails through the green volcanic mountains with incredibly scenic views over the beautiful rainforests. Explore cascading waterfalls like Afareaitu. Take a 4×4 tour. Don’t miss Paopao Bay (or Cook’s Bay) and Opunohu Bay. Visit a pineapple plantation. From fresh seafood caught right off the coast to traditional Tahitian dishes, there’s something for everyone’s taste buds.
How to get to Moorea: Moorea is just a scenic 45 minutes ferry ride from Tahiti with Aremiti. You can also take a 15-minute flight (airport code: MOZ) with Air Tahiti. You can also fly from Bora Bora (airport code: BOB – 1 hour 20 minutes) and Huahine (airport code: HUH – 35 minutes)
Tetiaroa is home to The Brando, one of the planet’s most exclusive hotels. Named after the former owner of the island, the iconic actor, Marlon Brando. Brando bought the islands in the 1960s while filming Mutiny on the Bounty. His family opened the resort in 2014, ten years after his death. You may or may not care about celebrities and public figures but it’s where Kim Kardashian had her 40th birthday party and where Barack Obama retreated, to write part of his memoir. So if it’s good enough for Kim and Barack, right?
This unspoiled, private, stunning atoll is just a 30-minute flight from Tahiti or just 1-hour from Bora Bora. The resort will arrange this flight for you. Go biking, snorkelling, bird watching, scuba diving, kayaking and paddle boarding. Swim with sea turtles, reef sharks and a dazzling array of tropical fish. The villas are heaven. You have an outdoor bathtub and your own pool. Bliss!
How to get to Tetiaroa: Flying time is 20 minutes from Tahiti (airport code: PPT) and the flight is operated by Air Tetiaroa, arranged through the Brando.
Where to stay: The Brando
A honeymoon destination that barely needs an introduction. Bora Bora is an extraordinary paradise. The Pearl of the Pacific is an island 270kms from Tahiti surrounded by islets (or more commonly known as motus). With Mount Otemanu in the background, the glittering warm lagoon and dazzling white sand, there aren’t enough superlatives to describe this iconic destination.
A lot of the luxury resorts are on their own private motu and most couples will stay in one of these in an iconic overwater bungalow. You’ll need to take a boat ride to your resort from the airport, too. Once you arrive, it’s all about relaxing and having fun in paradise. You don’t have to do a whole lot of anything except enjoy your newly wedded bliss as you marvel at the shades of blue in the lagoon and sky with the emerald green mountainous peaks. At night marvel at the constellation of stars, French Polynesia is one of the earth’s best honeymoon destinations for star gazing.
There is plenty to do if you choose. You can go snorkelling and scuba diving amongst the rich marine life. Take a helicopter ride over the heart-shaped atoll of Tūpai. Explore Viatape and pick up some souvenirs. Go sailing on a catamaran ship or go jetskiing. Take the hike to Mount Otemanu (or take a 4×4 or ATV tour if you the jetlag is too much). Mount Otemanu is one of the two volcanic peaks that make up Bora Bora’s iconic landscape. It’s about 727 meters high so it’s quite a challenging hike, but it’s definitely worth it for the breathtaking views at the top!
Most couples will eat at their luxury resort, but there are some famous spots like Bloody Marys and Saint James. Feast on the most divine seafood and discover cocktails made of exotic fruits you’ve never heard of!
One thing is for sure, Bora Bora has to be on your honeymoon itinerary!
How to get to Bora Bora: There are multiple daily flights from Tahiti (PPT) to Bora Bora (airport code: BOB) and it takes around 50 minutes. There are also flights from other islands, although less often, including Moorea (airport code: MOZ – 1 hour 20 minutes), Raiatea (airport code: RFP – 20 minutes), Huahine (airport code: HUH – 25 minutes) and Rangiroa (airport code: RGI – 1 hour 15)
Where to stay: The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort | Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora | Conrad Bora Bora Nui | InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa | Le Bora Bora by Pearl Resorts | Hotel Maitai Polynesia Bora Bora
Raiatea island is significant in Polynesian history. In fact, the island is regarded as the homeland of the Māori people who left here to settle in New Zealand and Hawaii. Previously then as Hava’i, it’s now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s also the administrative island of the Leeward Islands, so it’s an ideal place to experience authentic Polynesian life.
Raiatea wouldn’t have the luxury overwater bungalows, but it has a jungle interior ideal for exploring. You can go hiking in search of waterfalls and river kayaking. Raiatea is a jump-off point to Ta’haa island. It’s also the centre of sailing in French Polynesia with many companies basing themselves here.
How to get to Raiatea: You can fly to Raiatea (airport code: RFP) from Tahiti (airport code: PPT – 45 minutes) or Bora Bora (airport code: BOB – 20 minutes) and also from Huahine (airport code: HUH – 20 minutes), Maupiti (airport code: MAU – 25 minutes)
Where to stay: Raiatea Lodge Hotel
Much like neighbouring Bora Bora, Taha’a is wonderful. It has fewer crowds and less luxury resorts. Known as Vanilla Island because it produces 80% of Tahitian Vanilla. You can tour one of the vanilla plantations and learn all about vanilla production.
Similar to Bora Bora, there is the main island and surrounding tiny motus with stunning mountain peaks jutting out of the turquoise lagoon with magical coral reefs. It’s one of the most beautiful parts of the Society Islands and a lovely island to include with Bora Bora.
How to get to Taha’a: There is no airport on Taha’a. Fly to Raiatea (airport code: RFP) and take the ferry.
Other Society Islands
Huahine and Maupiti lie on opposite ends of the Leeward Islands and are a little more off the beaten track. They are perfect for intrepid honeymoon couples who don’t need luxury resorts.
Known as the Garden of Eden, Huahine is in fact two islands, Huahine Nui (big) & Huahine Iti (small) which are connected by a bridge. It’s covered in lush green rainforest and vegetation and you’ll find coconut plantations and vanilla orchards, wilder beaches and ancient and sacred Polynesian ruins (known locally as marae).
Maupiti is a tiny, secluded island. Accommodation is more rustic with family pensions or guesthouses. In fact, the locals have resisted big hotel names and mass tourism in their slice of paradise. Most people get around by bike. Explore the unspoiled aquamarine reef. Hike to the summit of Mount Teurafaatui, for the most magical views in French Polynesia.
How to get to Huahine: You can fly to Huahune (airport code: HUH) from Tahiti (airport code: PPT – 40 minutes) or Bora Bora (airport code: BOB – 25 minutes) and Raiatea (airport code: RFP – 20 minutes)
How to get to Maupiti: You can fly to Maupiti (airport code: MAU) from Tahiti (airport code: PPT – 50 minutes) and Raiatea (airport code: RFP – 25 minutes)
Where to stay: Hotel Le Mahana Huahine.
We limit accommodation on Maupiti with only rustic pensions or Airbnb room rentals.
Other French Polynesia islands
While the Society Islands receive most visitors, there are many other remote archipelagos to explore. It’s important to note that it’s not always possible to hop between the islands, as there may be only a cargo ferry system and limited flights between them. Check Air Tahiti for flights routes.
These islands and atolls are amongst the most beautiful islands in the world. With white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and lush vegetation, the Tuamotu is perfect for an idyllic off the beaten track honeymoon getaway in paradise. One of the Tuamotu Atolls is a great option for those who want to explore beyond the Society Islands. Made up of 78 coral islands atolls that stretch for nine hundred kilometres across the Pacific Ocean – about the length of Western Europe. The atolls were first settled by Polynesians about 3,000 years ago.
Much of the atoll chain is still uninhabited and the resorts are more limited than the Society Islands. There are less than a handful of hotels and they won’t be as polished or luxurious as those found in Bora Bora & Moorea. However, this is one thing that makes the Tuamotus so special; with miles of pristine beaches and deserted islands, you’ll often feel you have the whole place to yourself.
If you’re looking to relax, it’s the perfect honeymoon destination. Spend your days lounging on powdery white sand beaches or swimming in tranquil lagoon waters. Rangiroa and Fakarava are two of the top island honeymoon destinations for scuba diving. You will be in underwater heaven with colourful marine life. It’s hard to pick a favourite of the Tuamotus, but Tikehau, known as Pink Sand Island, is definitely a contender. With white and pink sand islets, lush palm trees and a real Robinson Crusoe feel. There are also tiny atolls like Mataiva.
How to get to the Tuamotu Atolls: You can fly from Tahiti (airport code: PPT) in 1 hour to Tikehau (airport code: TIH), Rangiroa (airport code: RGI), Mataiva (airport code: MVT) and Fakarava (airport code: FAV). There is also direct flights from Rangiroa (RGI) to Tikehau (TIH – 20 minutes) and Fakarava (FAV – 45 minutes). You can also fly from Bora Bora (airport code BOB) to Rangiroa (RGI – 1 hour 15 minutes).
The Marquesas Islands are ideal for couples who want to get really, really off the beaten track. These islands are 1600 kilometres from Tahiti. Of the 12 islands in this chain, only 6 are inhabited. The main islands are Nuku Hiva in the Northern Marquesas and Hiva Oa in the Southern Marquesas. You won’t find luxury resorts or lagoons and coral reefs. The islands are volcanic and covered in dense, lush, emerald rainforest. The internet will be patchy and tours are informal. What you will get is one of the world’s most remote island chains, truly get off grid and discover Polynesia’s abundant beauty and ancient culture.
Polynesian culture here has been less influenced by European colonialism than other parts of French Polynesia. On Nuku Hiva, the population is currently less than 3000 and tragically went from six figures to just four figures from the 18th to 20th century. Island life has changed little in The Marquesas over the decades and centuries. They get around on 4×4 or horseback and make a living hunting and fishing.
You can find many Polynesian archaeological sites, hike to Vaipo Waterfall on Nuku Hiva, explore the wild untouched brown and black sand beaches and see the wild horses on Hiva Oa. Hiva Oa is also where the famous impressionist painter, Paul Gauguin, lived and died.
How to get to the Marquesas Islands: Fly from Tahiti (airport code: PPT) to Nuku Hiva (airport code: NHV – 3 hours 15 minutes) and Hiva Oa (airport code: AUQ – 3 hours 20 minutes). You can also fly between Nuku Hiva and Hiva Oa.
The Gambier islands are the most secluded archipelago in French Polynesia. In fact, they’re tiny. They are probably the most ‘off the beaten track’ you can get in French Polynesia.
The main island is Mangareva with around 1400 inhabitants living in or near Rikitea, the main village. In Polynesian mythology, Mangareva was lifted from the ocean floor by the demigod Maui. It’s also one of the biggest producers of black pearls in French Polynesia. One of the cultural and historical highlights is the architectural remnants of European religion imported by colonists. These days, Polynesians of The Gambier follow their more ancient ways. There are no hotels here, only basic pensions.
Have an unforgettable honeymoon adventure snorkelling in the crystal clear lagoon. Hike Mount Duff. Stargaze under the incredible Pacific night sky. Take a boat trip to discover uninhabited islands and deserted coves and hidden beaches.
How to get to Gambier Islands: Fly from Tahiti (PPT) to Totegegie Airport (airport code: GMR – 5 hours).
Where to stay: Pension Maro’i
Another remote archipelago at the southern edge of French Polynesia, the Austral Islands are isolated and unique. European travellers have had less influence and native culture is relatively untouched. Tubuai is the island in the story of the Mutiny of the Bounty. As the Austral Islands are a little further south along the Tropic of Capricorn, it’s still a tropical climate, however, it’s relatively milder.
Rurutu island is one of the best destinations to go whale watching in the world, without the crowds and you can even swim with them! The season is usually from July to October. On Tubuai, hike to Mount Taita and swim amongst the coral reefs in the lagoon. Go windsurfing or kayaking. Raivavae is not to be missed if you’re adding the Austral islands to your itinerary. It’s home to one of the most beautiful turquoise lagoons in the world.
How to get to Austral Islands: Fly from Tahiti (airport code: PPT) to Rurutu (airport code: RUR- 1.5 hours), Tubuai (airport code: TUB – 1.5 hours), Raivavae (airport code: RUR – 2 hours)
Where to stay: There are no hotels and only very modest family-run pensions. Vaitumu Village Rurutu | Tavaetu Guesthouse by Tubuai Plongee – Tubuai Island | Pension Vairano – Raivavae
Cruising & Sailing
A cruise or sailing trip is one of the best ways to see French Polynesia. Most of the big cruise companies will have ships that sail to French Polynesia on a Pacific Ocean cruise itinerary. They’ll start on the west coast of the USA or from Honolulu in Hawaii and sail to New Zealand or Australia and take in a couple of islands. Visit Celebrity Cruises and Princess Cruises for inspiration.
One of our favourite adventure tour companies, Intrepid Travel, has small group sailing tours. To dive deeper into French Polynesia, Paul Gauguin Cruises provides authentic itineraries on a small ship. Not only do you get to explore the popular islands of Bora Bora and Moorea, but you get to visit some of the more off-the-beaten-track islands.
You could also try Variety Cruises which has some incredible itineraries. A unique way to see the Marquesas if you’re not short on time is the part cruise/part freighter ship, Aranui 5. If you want to charter your own yacht, consider Tahiti Yacht Charter who is based on the island of Raiatea.
Frequently asked questions
How long should we stay in Bora Bora and French Polynesia?
How much does a French Polynesia honeymoon package cost?
Should we bring cash/ should we tip?
Is French Polynesia safe for LGBTQ+ couples?
Is the Maldives or French Polynesia better for honeymoon?
What is the cheapest time to visit French Polynesia?
Should we use a travel agent to book French Polynesia?
How long should we stay in Bora Bora and French Polynesia?
Many couples will ‘fly and flop’ on a relaxing beach honeymoon to French Polynesia for a week, particularly if you’re less than a 10-hour flight. There certainly is nothing wrong with relaxing in paradise. For those couples who are travelling from further away and those who like more activities and want to go on a little island hop, hike mountains, see waterfalls and experience Polynesian culture, you’ll need a bit more time. As French Polynesia is nearly 24 hours from Europe, 8-17 hours from the USA and at least 10 hours from Australia, we would recommend at least 10 nights to make such a long trip count, recover from jetlag, have time to explore and relax.
How much time you have, how much you want to see and do will help you decide what islands to visit. There isn’t a right or wrong island to visit or a wrong amount of time. For a taste of honeymoon luxury, stick with Bora Bora and/or Moorea and to dive deeper into French Polynesia add on another lesser-known island like one in the Tuamotus Atolls, for example.
When planning your itinerary, remember that 2 nights will only give you 1 full day to explore or relax, 3 nights = 2 full days, 4 nights = 3 full days, and so on. Make sure you plan some days to recover from jetlag, to have chilled out beach days along with a couple of days to explore. We would recommend at least 4 nights on each island. If you have 7 nights, pick two islands. If you have 10-14 nights, pick three islands. Please come back and tell us in the comments or DM us on Instagram or on our other social media channels about your favourites!
How much does a French Polynesia honeymoon package cost?
Flight costs will depend on where you are in the world and the time of year. The following flight prices are based per person return. You can fly to the French Polynesia US$1400 from the west coast of North America. If you’re based in Europe, you can fly from London for around £1600, from Dublin for around €2200, and Paris from around €1900. From Sydney it’s around AU$1400. You can choose to fly business class, which can be 3-4 times the cost of an economy ticket. If a business class or first-class ticket is out of your budget, consider upgrading one way so you can arrive in style, rested and refreshed. Peak times like Christmas / New Year and Easter will cost more and low season will cost less.
Let’s take a look at accommodation costs. The following prices are based on per room per night for two people sharing in high season. Tahiti 4-5 star hotels will range from €300-450. A luxury resort in Moorea will start at €750 to €1200+ for an overwater bungalow. In Bora Bora, prices for a luxury resort overwater bungalow will be around €2300+. So as you can see, accommodation costs for a 10-night luxury trip in high season will be we well into 6 figures. If you can go during shoulder season (see when to go), you’ll definitely make a big saving. You could also make a saving by mixing up the accommodation. For example, starting with a 3-star to 4-star hotel and then finishing in a 5-star.
You’ll also need to add on domestic inter-island flights and transfers. As we’ve mentioned, the Air Tahiti passes are good value, costing €470 per person in high season. Transfer range from around $/€60 in Tahiti to €300 to a luxury resort on Bora Bora.
What is the cost of food? From fast food to luxury dining, you’ll have a choice on the busier islands. A fast food meal can be as little as $/€10, however, a 3-course meal in Bora Bora’s top restaurants could set you back around $/€300 for three courses with wine.
The French Polynesian Franc is pegged to the Euro, which is great for couples who are based in the Eurozone as prices don’t fluctuate too much. However, this means that if you’re outside of the Eurozone, for example in Great Britain, the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, you may need to be mindful of exchange rate changes.
As you can see, a French Polynesia luxury honeymoon package will stretch into five figures. However, if you can go in the shoulder season, book early, and mix up the accommodation and room categories, you can claw back and make some savings on your trip to paradise!
Prices are a guide only. Flight cost estimates are from major city airports. Prices are valid at the time of writing this guide. However, due to market volatility and change in exchange rates, they may be inaccurate at the time of reading. Please go to Google Flights and Booking.com for cost estimates for your dates.
Should we bring cash / should we tip?
Yes, bring some cash or at least use an ATM in Tahiti on arrival. Credit and debits cards are widely accepted in luxury resorts and the busier tourist areas, but cash is king on smaller islands. Tipping is not part of Polynesian culture however, a tip for good service is always appreciated.
Is French Polynesia safe for LGBTQ+ couples?
Yes, French Polynesia is safe for LGBTQ+ couples. In fact, as the country is under French Law, it’s illegal to discrimate against LGBTQ+ people. Interestingly, Polynesian culture has a third gender, called Māhū.
Is the Maldives or French Polynesia better for honeymoon?
This is one of the most common questions we get asked. They’re actually quite different, so one destination is better than the other. The Maldives has no mountains or rivers and the vast majority of couples will stay on the same tiny island, compared to French Polynesia, which has a mountainous volcanic peaks. Although it is possible, in the Maldives, to go on an island hop, it is actually extremely rare. An island hop is quite common in French Polynesia. The Maldives is more of an all-inclusive destination, whereas French Polynesia hotels are usually booked on a bed & breakfast rate.
Geographically speaking, French Polynesia and Maldives are, of course, so far away from each other, so how much time and budget will help you narrow things down. If you’re in Europe, you may get more bang for your buck in the Maldives and they are much nearer. Plus, you can add on many exciting destinations that are close by, like Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and Dubai / United Arab Emirates.
If you are based on the east coast of Australia, in New Zealand, or the west coast of North America, French Polynesia is closer. One other big factor is that their peak dry seasons are the opposite time of year, so if you’re tied to a particular month, you could base your decision on climate guidelines. French Polynesia is better from April to October and the Maldives is better from December to April. You can read our Ultimate Maldives Honeymoon Guide here to dive deeper into this magical destination.
What is the cheapest time to visit French Polynesia?
The cheapest time to travel to French Polynesia is during the wet season from December to March (although during the Christmas holiday / vacation season prices will jump). If you travel during the wet season, there is a possibility you’ll have long sunny days, but there is a higher risk of adverse weather.
Should we use a travel agent to book French Polynesia?
A good travel agent who books French Polynesia regularly will usually have a direct relationship with resorts in the country. This means they may have preferential rates, so it’s definitely worth checking things with a travel agent. In Europe, you have a high level of consumer protection (in the UK under ATOL and in the EU under the EU package travel directive). If anything goes wrong, you’ve got someone to call.
If you choose to book a D-I-Y French Polynesia honeymoon package, we’d recommend choosing a flexible rate with free cancellation. When you’re booking flights, give yourself enough time to connect. We’d recommend at least a 3-hour layover. Don’t forget to have travel insurance in place before booking! French Polynesia books up quickly in high season, so book early to avoid disappointment. Airlines usually release flights around 10-11 months before departure.
What to buy
Black Pearl | Vanilla products | Coconut products | Wood Carvings
Where to tag on
As you can see whether you have 7, 10 or 14 nights, French Polynesia has some magical island chains to explore, so if you want to spend your whole honeymoon there, you won’t be disappointed! It is a long way to travel to just spend a few days, too. However, unless you live in California or New Zealand, you need to pass through another destination to get there.
Consider California, whether it’s a city stop in Los Angeles or San Francisco or a classic California road trip. You can also fly from Auckland too, so you could consider New Zealand for an adventure road trip leg of your honeymoon. A New Zealand or California road trip and a French Polynesia beach honeymoon combination would be unforgettable. Discover more WOW honeymoon combinations here.
There is also a weekly flight from Hawaii, so you could combine Hawaii with French Polynesia if your dates align. Check out our Ultimate Hawaii Honeymoon Guide.
Before you go
Watch – The Bounty (1984 Dir Roger Donaldson) | Mutiny on the Bounty (1962 Dir Lewis Milestone) | Adrift (2018 Dir Baltasar Kormákur) | Six Days Seven Nights (1998 Ivan Reitman) | Moana (2016 Dir Ron Clements, John Musker)
We would love to hear from you in the comments if you are planning a French Polynesia honeymoon! Let us know if this guide was useful or if we left out any essential information or if you need to know more!