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French Poly honeymoon help

Discussion in 'The Pacific Islands' started by watboy, Apr 9, 2018.

  1. watboy

    watboy Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Thailand
    375
    64
    I'm having harder time than usual planning my annual dive trip. This year will be our honeymoon so want something a little special. I have 2 weeks give or take to go to FP. Original goal was to do a week's liveaboard at Fakarava, then 6 nights or so in Bora Bora. Would like something adventurous followed by something luxurious. But the flights are making scheduling tough, and the current plan would give us 3 nights in Tahiti, then 7 nights on a liveaboard, then only 2 nights in Bora Bora before returning.

    If i drop the the liveaboard and did land based diving, I could do 6 nights land based diving, then 6 nights bora bora. I don't want to do too many island hops. Where to go for the first 6 nights? Fakarava / Rangiroa / Moorea where i'm currently looking at.

    Mrs. and I are decently experienced divers (300 and 800 dives respectively). Been to Raja Ampat, Palau, Maldives, Tubbataha. Haven't seen a hammerhead or dolphin while diving, so those would be neat. For hotels, never heard the concept of Pension hotels before. While we are both happy to stay on the most basic of liveaboards, would like something not to budget for our honeymoon.

    thanks in advance for tips and advice.
     
  2. Altamira

    Altamira ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: TX
    2,014
    2,090
    If your budget permits, you might look into a 10-14 night Paul Gauguin cruise out of Papeete. It is a very easy way to get in a lot of dives in different locations without having to coordinate flights other than to/from Papeete. We did a 12 night cruise in 2016, and have nothing but high praise for the itineraries, ship, crew, food, variety of things to see, and a top notch dive operation. I would go with them again in a heartbeat. It is also nice to stay an extra day or two before or after the cruise in Papeete (Intercontinental Hotel) or Moorea (take your pick) if time permits, but that is certainly not a necessity, and does add to the expense if trying to stay on a tight budget.
     
    watboy likes this.
  3. watboy

    watboy Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Thailand
    375
    64
    Thanks for the tip. I looked into Paul Gauguin, but decided the cruise is not for us. Also decided against a live aboard, instead will spend the first week at Rangiroa focused on diving and then a week in Bora Bora (is it worth diving there? I guess we have our gear so why not). Decided on Rangiroa over Fakarava because we've never dove w dolphins and as awesome as Fakarava sounds, there wasn't anything there we haven't "seen" before. Hopefully made the right choice.
     
  4. Freewillow

    Freewillow Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Brussels
    1,664
    418
    Best is Fakarava and Rangiroa.........Bora Bora is nice, but not really for diving.
     
    Wingy likes this.
  5. dive kansas

    dive kansas New

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: kansas
    1
    1
    My wife and I were in FP a year ago we did two land based stays in Rangiroa and Fakarava in a week, the resort in Rangiroa was almost a 5 star resort, we stayed at a really cool pension in Fakarava, expect to see ALOT of sharks, we did not see any hammerheads or dolphins on this trip. If you want more info email me at stryon81@gmail.com
     
    watboy likes this.
  6. ColoDale

    ColoDale ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Cozumel
    1,020
    723
    Diving in Bora Bora is not that stellar. Rangiroa and Fakarava are much better. We did see dolphins in the passes at Rangiroa and mantas on the outer reef. Diving Moorea IMO was better than Bora Bora. Topside Bora Bora is stunning.
     
    Wingy likes this.
  7. lavieafond

    lavieafond Registered

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Boulder, CO
    10
    3
    About five years ago we did an 8 day trip to Bora Bora and Rangiroa. Diving in Rangiroa was epic. The Kia Ora resort is by far the most luxurious and was really quite wonderful. I'm remembering it broke the bank, but then it was a perfect experience in a dreamy setting! Splurge if it is your honeymoon! Even if it isn't! (My now husband asked me to marry him on that trip - and I thought we were going on a dive trip!) We also dived in Bora Bora and I felt as if we were the only ones at the Meridien hotel shlepping dive gear early morning to the boat dock, but it was actually pretty interesting diving. And I'd rather dive than sit on the beach wondering what it would be like underwater! Plan a couple of dives for sure. I have video from that trip and looking back there were a fair amount of sharks and the twinkly fish in the crystal clear water are always worth it. One thing we were bummed about is staying out at Le Meridien on a motu meant that we had to use their ridiculous shuttle anytime we wanted to go to the middle island for anything (limited runs and $50 USD round trip). Turns out we only went one night because of it. If I went to Bora Bora again, I'd find a nice resort that was based in the middle of the lagoon on the mountainous part, not on a motu which completely isolates you from anything but your hotel. There was a bit too much of a French from France attitude at Le Meridien (i.e You'd like tabasco?! There is no more! - as we see some at a neighboring table), but the resort was to die for gorgeous. Dive both for sure. Have fun!
     
    ScubaSteve85 and watboy like this.
  8. Wingy

    Wingy Contributor

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Perth West Aust.
    2,665
    2,268
    Lol too much French from France - that made me giggle :D

    It is a French Territory just like La Reunion where there's too much French from France in Africa..

    Anyway - I agree staying on Motos is a guaranteed way to keep you there thus keeping your room service tab growing and growing. A "budget" overwater bungalow on mainland option is the Sofitel which is kind of cool because it was the "original" OW bungalow set up built for the stars of the movie the Bounty....but budget OW bungalows & BB mean a different thing to what is normally "budget" (A little tip that may still work although I believe they may have finished works - email them and ask if they are still restoring any OW bungalows and if so do they have any on that section - I got mine down from$1400 P/N to $480 P/N). Have a meal at Bloody Mary's...that's compulsory but unless you're into cruise ship type activities there's really not much to do on BB.
    BB diving is very boring IMO with swarming lemon sharks thanks to topdives shark feeding - there are much better ops but you may find unless there is a group you may have no option other than Topdive.
    The trick is getting flights to line up correctly with as few back to Tahiti stops - start in the Tuomotos and work back to the societies - there is a direct flight BB - Rangiroa so I'm assuming there may be a reverse leg. Air Tahiti Interisland pass is your friend. Also take the ferry across the sea of the moon to moorea from Papeete because it a) sounds very romantic and is stupidly pretty and b) the flight is ten minutes so stupidly expensive.
    Obviously Tuomotos diving is where it's at and I personally way prefer the Pensions - it's a great way to make some friends, learn about Polynesian culture and eat massive amounts. Pensione Tina et Marie is my recommendation. You are right on Tipuatu Pass
    Save the $$ for an overwater bungalow on BB or - better - Moorea. Moorea Pearl is lovely and the dive shop attached is very good although there is AFAIK only morning dives.
    Moorea is a great island...and it has Caramelline - the most sinfully delicious patisserie in the world within walking distance. I got fat on Moorea. Will be back there shortly expect to get fat again.
    Enjoy your honeymoon :)
     
    watboy likes this.
  9. Freewillow

    Freewillow Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Brussels
    1,664
    418
    The French are right: tabasco should not be on a dinner table :yeahbaby:.

    My americans inlaws are putting tabasco on their raw oysters.............:laughrant::gas:
     
    Wingy likes this.
  10. Manuel Sam

    Manuel Sam Contributor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Boston
    402
    76
    There is a pension called Josephine's right on the edge of Tiputa Pass. From its deck, you have a great view of the pass and can hopefully see the dolphins playing in the waves.

    What you might see in the Tuamotos are Great Hammerheads - not schooling Scalloped Hammerheads. If you are looking for schooling Scalloped Hammerheads, email me at ceeehunt@gmail.com - that is a different conversation and destination(s).

    The season for Great Hammerheads in the Tuamotos is generally thought to be from December thru February give or take a month. That is not to say that they cannot be seen at other times of the year. On my last trip there in June, riding the incoming tide in Tiputa Pass in the afternoon, we were lucky enough to see Great Hammerhead, Tiger and marlin on different dives/days. I'd never seen any of those in Rangiroa in 4 prior trips. Also, our best dolphin action occurred on the wall dives outside rather than inside the pass. Ask your dive operator if they know of a dolphin informally known as "Touch Me".....not that they can go find it, but if Touch Me wants to play, it will show up on its own terms.

    Have fun.
     

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