Best things to do in Papeete
Find out more about those top places in Papeete
Untapped and unspoiled, French Polynesia remains one of the best tourist destination you can visit. Found on the South Pacific Ocean, the French Polynesia is an overseas collectively of the French Republic and it consists of over 118 geographically dispersed islands.
When visiting you can expect to see the best nature has to offer including towering mountains, magical waterfalls and exotic beaches.
There are quite a number of archaeological sites in French Polynesia, one of the many is the Matairea archaeological site. Located in Huahine, it presents an opportunity to see some of French Polynesia’s oldest gifts of nature. A typical visit would have gone through an already set trail, past a fortification wall before landing at its Marae Tefano, Marae Matairea Rahi and Marea Paepae Ofata - with each of them providing their unique archaeological attractions. Best to go with a guide who understand the region.
There is no denying that this market is a special one – in fact it's where all the island’s complexities are shown in its simplest form. Located in Pape`ete the market covers an entire city block and is usually filled up with locals looking to purchase the goods on sell – such as shell necklaces, hats vegetables and souvenirs. The best time to visit the market is on weekends but most especially on Sunday mornings.
It is always advisable to go on a “food tour” when visiting a new place and that applies to French Polynesia as well. Influenced by French, Chinese and Polynesia culture, it holds one of the most diverse cuisines in the world, mainly prepared using different traditional methods pass down over decades. Major dishes include a tropical pudding called Poe, mountain bananas and Poisson cru - they can be found in any of the numerous restaurants around.
Perhaps one of the most beautiful sites of French Polynesia – easily accessible, it is home to three stunning waterfalls. Just a short distance through the forest you would locate Vaimahutu the first of three waterfalls, after which a 20 - minute walk leads to the remaining two falls, Haamarere Iti and Haamarere Rahi. Visited by many tourists, you would most likely see people swimming in the natural pools formed by the Waterfalls.
If you are in search for a place to see all the island’s aquatic attractions, visit the Lagoonarium. Also, called the Fare l’a Reserve the aquarium, it is not the biggest of aquariums but it offers a unique viewing room where you can experience a close substitute to life at sea. The Lagoonarium also shares a spot with the Captain Bligh Restaurant.
With its clear waters, you would struggle to find a better beach in the French Polynesia. Situated in Maupiti, it is surrounded by coconut trees to give it that “paradise feel” – filled with an abundance of marine life, it offers a great place to spot rays and octopus.