The top tourist attractions in French Polynesia give us a taste of what France would be like if it were a group of tropical islands on the South Pacific Ocean. But France isn’t and that is what these islands are for.
Whether you’re planning to have a summer vacation, escape from winter, or spend a romantic honeymoon with your loved one, French Polynesia is the ideal destination. The archipelago has that much to offer and more for every traveler.
It is the world’s second largest atoll next to Kwajalein of Micronesia and the most populated island in the Tuamotu Archipelago. Rangiroa tends to attract divers and surfers from all over the world because of its diverse aquatic life and powerful waves.
2. Jardin Botanique
The 137-hectare botanical garden was founded by an American named Harrison Smith in 1919. Apart from showcasing local flora, he also brought in some foreign species like the pamplemousse, a Southeast Asian pomelo or grapefruit.
You can see some Galapagos turtles freely roaming Jardin Botanique. Put on some mosquito repellent before you enter.
The town was used as a military base by French troops in 1844 and it has been in and out of service since then. The fort still stands to this day and is currently the site of Faratea Port.
Faratea Port is now used for commercial sea trade with the nearby Pape’ete. The historic town of Taravao is one of the top tourist attractions in French Polynesia because of its history.
4. Musée de Tahiti et des Îles
The museum is dedicated to the different historical aspects of French Polynesia. Exhibits are divided into four categories: natural history, geography, pre-European era, and European settlement in the islands.
There is also an outdoor exhibit as well as a garden you can walk around in, in case you need a break from all the history, culture, and art that will bombard your senses. You can even wander towards the edge and watch surfers from a distance.
5. Hiva Oa
The island has many archeological sites and is one of the top tourist attractions in French Polynesia. Perhaps the best of these historical landmarks is Iipona, a holy site with five monumental tikis.
The Tehueto petroglyphs are also an interesting sight and comprise of human figures carved unto basalt rocks.