Tahiti, encircled by a stunning blue lagoon, fringed by pristine beaches and crowned by a series of majestic peaks, is the largest of the French Polynesian islands. About an equal distance from Los Angeles as it is from Sydney, Tahiti is divided into two main areas, known as Tahiti Nui and Tahiti Iti.
The mountainous interior hides deep valleys, crystal streams and tranquil waterfalls, a paradise that is second to none. The northwestern section of the island – Tahiti Nui – contains three extinct volcanoes, which provide the stunning backdrop to this tropical paradise. Mount Orohena is the tallest mountain in French Polynesia.
The rugged coastline is home to an abundance of wildlife and tropical flowers, as well as most of the island's population. There are no indigenous mammals on the island, but there are 100 species of birds and a whole world under the water.
Tahiti has incredibly diverse marine life, including coral in many colours of the rainbow. See tiger sharks, manta rays and giant turtles here as well as dolphins and barracudas. With many diving spots off the coast of Tahiti exploring desires are well catered for here.
Things to do in Tahiti
Papeete is the capital of Tahiti and the economic hub of French Polynesia. Discover vibrant markets, pearl shops and charming boutiques in a destination that is truly unique and unforgettable.
Le Marché, the fragrant and colourful downtown market is a brilliant place to visit, with Tahitian crafts and produce on offer; treat yourself to vanilla beans, monoi oil or a pareo, a type of sarong.
Once you’ve explored the city at your leisure, join the locals at waterfront promenade Vai’ete Square at sunset to enjoy the treats from gourmet food trucks.
With mountainous peaks and rainforests to explore, Tahiti features many hiking trails. Some will take you past waterfalls cup deep into the valleys, with refreshing pools at the bottom just perfect for a dip.
As with most tropical islands, Tahiti’s beaches are to many its main event. There are beaches with black sand on the east coast and white sandy shores on the west, while the beaches in less developed areas, such as Venus Beach, are quiet and rustic.
One of the best ways to explore Tahiti is on a jeep safari. On one of these tours you’ll take in the peaks and valleys of the diverse Tahitian landscape on an adventure worth writing home about — writing to tell them you’re staying for good, that is.