Bora Bora was our second island. We stayed at the Le Mai Tai Polynesian. This photo depicts the view of Bora Bora from Farone Point on Motu Piti Aau. The weather was just idyllic, but Gobind got sunburned. The Lonely Planet guide book noted that Bora Bora has become overdeveloped and that's true- hotels and resorts line the coast. It is still beautiful, but with too many tourists and cruise ships, and litter. Please click on the hyperlinks to see the photos. Then click on Close Window to close the window with the picture in it.
It was raining when our plane left Huahine. We had to lay over on the main island of Tahiti for four hours on a Sunday morning with nothing to do until the hop to Bora Bora. Try to avoid that if at all possible. The Bora Bora airport is on a coral reef, or motu, so you take a boat to the island. It was the middle of the afternoon by the time we got settled into our room at Le MaiTai Polynesia. The next morning we took a water taxi to another motu and spent the day snorkeling. Read Becky's description at right. That evening we went for a walk along the main coast road and while stopping at a public beach experienced a most amazing sunset!
Our last day on Bora Bora we decided to take another tour, since we had liked the last one so much. This one was by van rather than 4X4. Even though we couldn't go off-road we still saw some great sights. The mountains of Bora Bora are impressive from any angle and just about any distance. We saw cruise ships in the harbor, saw pareos being made and shopped for local crafts. The carved shells are beautiful, inexpensive and sport the same hues as the much advertised and very expensive Tahitian black pearls.
The mountains of Bora Bora are surreal - you just have to keep looking at them because you can't believe what you're seeing exists. If we go back I want to find a tour that goes up into the mountains.
For me, the worst part about Bora Bora was the smell at Cook's Bay- like an alley on a hot summer's day. And, due to the lack of water and the surplus of resorts, they had to shut the water off every night between 9PM and 5AM. The best part was underwater. (You can read in more detail at the snorkeling page.) I liked the snorkeling at the Coral Garden best. There wern't any naked men, but the fish were friendly. We took lots of underwater shots with a Fuji disposable underwater camera- be sure to buy all you might need before you go since they cost 3x as much in Tahiti. Here I am with some friends: Becky and fish And here's a shot of the coral: Coral
Be sure to eat at La Bounty restaurant. It's near the hotels in the Cook's Bay area and the pizza is great. We ate there twice since the resort food is expensive and not as good as the local places. Gobi enjoyed his meal in spite of the sunburn: Gobind's dinner
See The Environment for a summary of environmental issues in the islands.