Moorea page 1
Moorea lies in the the windward Society Islands a little more than 10 miles west of Tahiti across the "Sea of the Moon." If you are fortunate enough to be sitting on the right side of the plane when landing at Tahiti you will have a spectacular view of this beautiful, romantic and magical South Pacific island. None could be more beautiful than Moorea with its jagged mountain peaks, lush tropical green foliage and crystal clear waters of varying shades of greens and blues. To see the island is to fall in love. Heart shaped Moorea has beautiful white sand beaches, deep cut bays nestled between volcanic peaks and all the amenities to make an island holiday a once in a lifetime memory.


Sunset over the island of Moorea
Sunset over Moorea and the "Sea of the Moon" as viewed from Tahiti.
Moorea is actually the remnant of what was once the south rim of a volcano and is considerably older in geological terms than Tahiti, its sister island. Its landscape is punctuated by mountains and jagged volcanic peaks. Cook's Bay and Opunoho Bay almost encircle Mt. Rotui which reaches 2,600 feet and, when viewed from Belvedere Point, is one of the most spectacular scenic views in all of Polynesia. The valleys, cut deep between the volcanic peaks, are fertile lands where tropical fruits and coconuts, along with the island's most famous export, vanilla, thrive. Paradise on Earth is truly defined and accentuated by Moorea.


Our trip was arranged so that we spent three full days and nights on each of the five islands we visited. All to soon our three days on Rangiroa were up and we were packing for our next adventure to Moorea. Inter-island air travel in French Polynesia is not at all like air travel here in the states. The airports were only a few minutes at most from the hotels, and the flights, on twin engine puddle jumpers, carried only 45 to 50 people. Check in was easy and fast, a pleasure in fact. Airport security did not exists. The flight was called, we boarded and within minutes we'd be taxiing to the active runway. Anne got a kick out of the greetings from our pilots. They usually went something like: "Good morning. Welcome aboard our flight to Moorea. Take off in ten seconds." When was the last time you were on a flight in the states where the pilot told you take off would be immediate or in 10 seconds? And, mind you, we hadn't been on the plane more than fifteen minutes. What a pleasure! View of Moorea taken while landing
Landing at Moorea.

To get from Rangiroa to Moorea we connected through Papeete. Fifty minutes to Papeete, two hours in Papeete between flights, then 10 minutes to Moorea, or so we thought. Arriving in Papeete we noticed another flight leaving in 15 minutes and quickly jumped on. It would have been a waste to have sat at the airport in Papeete those two hours when we could have been enjoying the sights of Moorea.


Arriving in Moorea it was immediately apparent that Moorea enjoyed more tourism than Rangiroa. The airport was larger with many more tourists booths, car rentals and shops. We were again met by the hotel representative and received another lei greeting. I could get used to that part of island life. Especially because Anne looks so pretty and smells so good with those beautiful orchids hanging around her neck. Our hotel, the Sofitel Ia Ora, was less than two miles from the airport and in no time we arrived at the registration desk. In minutes we were registered and on our way to our room. In Moorea our accommodations were in an over-water hut. Over-water huts are the best as they are a little more private and offer such amenities as a glass cocktail table so you can see the tropical fish in the water below your bungalow; private sun bathing deck, and your own steps down into the lagoon. The Sofitel Ia Ora was a step above the Kia Ora Village on Rangiroa. We had both air conditioning and a television. The only problem is that the television had only two stations and both were in French. Still it was fun watching a movie with familiar actors, hearing the wrong voices and trying to figure out what was going on. No I didn't waste my time watching TV! I enjoyed all that Moorea had to offer. Anne at the dinner table
Anne at dinner.



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Moorea pages --The Hotel | Snorkeling | Touring the Island | Sunsets | Top of this page
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