Bora Bora, French Polynesia
It’s almost impossible to describe the stunning natural beauty of this French Polynesian island. Here, the verdant inactive volcano, Mt. Otemanu, stands tall above blindingly white sands, surrounded by a kaleidoscope of blue water. Bora Bora is a popular stop on South Pacific itineraries, and ships anchor offshore and send tenders to the main town of Vaitape, which has a small market.
What We Love
Watercraft Excursions: Get out on the water under your own power to see innumerable shades of blue on a personal watercraft. The half-day adventure will give you some of the best views of the majestic island.
Fire Dancing: You can catch a fire dance performance anywhere in the Polynesian triangle, but there’s something about the performers on Bora Bora that make this a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The show at the Four Seasons Bora Bora, which is positioned on its own island, is particularly worthwhile.
Best Known For
Bloody Mary's: The beach bar and restaurant has been welcoming island visitors (Nelson Rockefeller, Mick Jagger, and the Kardashians among them) since the '70s. The fish is fresh, the views are unbeatable, and you never know who may be playing an impromptu concert.
Stingrays: Hop on a little boat to a tranquil sandbar to swim among these friendly creatures. You can pose with Brigitte Bardot (one particularly photogenic stingray) and others in the cerulean waters.
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Who It's Best For
Starry-Eyed Relaxers: There’s a reason why Bora Bora is synonymous with honeymooning. The picturesque beaches are perfect for strolling, and the laid-back vibe means there's not much to do besides chill out.
Don't Say We Didn't Warn You
Beauty Can Be Boring: Yes, it is one of the world’s most picturesque settings, but that means there also isn’t a whole heck of a lot to do apart from putting your toes in the sand. Embrace it and just relax, even if that's not usually your thing.
Jenna Mahoney is a Brooklyn-based contributor to ShermansCruise who has also written for Allure.