Moorea, just a few km away from Tahiti, is even more scenic and laid back than its better known sister island. A coastal road, providing access to white sand beaches that are rare on Tahiti, encircles the mountainous interior. Two deep bays, Cook’s Bay and Opunohu Bay, punctuate the northern shore. Swimming, snorkeling, and scuba diving are superb. The interior provides opportunities for hiking or trekking, and the topless beaches are wonderful for relaxation.
Opunohu Bay from Mt. Rotui
An extensive coral reef encircles Moorea, providing many excellent dive locations. The bays are generally too deep and murky from inland runoff. The fringing reef is not well developed in most areas. A boat is usually needed to reach the best sites, both inside and outside the barrier reef. The exception is Teavaro Beach near the airport, where the barrier reef is close enough to the island to access from the beach. Inside the reef is a wonderful snorkeling spot with fairly shallow, crystal clear water. Moorea can receive world class surfing swells, but the best surf spots are in close proximity to the sharp reef—experts only.
Black-tipped reef sharks patrol the outer barrier reef
Go to Moorea page 2
Interactive map of Moorea
Books about Moorea