One of the most epic travel destinations we’ve been to is the French Polynesian island of Bora Bora. We stayed at the Four Season Spa & Resort for our honeymoon in an overwater bungalow with a private patio that had stairs leading directly into the water. It was incredible, to say the least. Bora Bora is the epitome of island paradise.
To say the Bora Bora is idyllic is understating it. People often think that beach destinations have to be all relaxing on the beach or laying by the pool, but there are plenty of things to do in Bora Bora. One of our favorite activities was renting a speed boat and zipping around the island taking photos of the incredible natural beauty that was all around us.
One of the main features of the resorts in Bora Bora that vacationers are looking for is the overwater bungalows and access to the white sandy beaches. You can find all of this, and more, at almost all of the resorts, not just the all-inclusive Bora Bora resorts. So don’t think that a trip to Bora Bora is out of the question.
If you’re planning a trip to Bora Bora, or just want to dream about staying in one of the amazing hotels, check out our recommendations for hotels in Bora Bora.
Top 10 Things to Do in Bora Bora
1. Swimming with Sharks and Manta Rays
On a Shark & Ray Snorkel Safari, you’ll have the opportunity to swim alongside, touch and feed the sharks and rays (or if you’re too squeamish you can admire them from the boat!). Of course, an experienced guide is with you the entire time, making sure you know how to react to these powerful creatures and that the situation is safe. You won’t believe what it feels like when a 4-foot wide manta ray brushes up against you.
2. Snorkeling or Scuba Diving
Snorkeling, or scuba diving if you’re certified, is a much beloved activity on Bora Bora. There are many different tour companies offering different excursions, but Reef Discovery will take you to four different spots with some of the best coral reefs so you can swim around with lots of fish, eels and rays.
3. Go on a Jeep Safari
There are many companies who run Jeep Safaris around the island of Bora Bora, which is a great way to see the interior of the island, rather than the views from the water. Many of the tours last about 3 hours and take you to a couple of villages and look-out points, as well as a location where old Army cannons still exist from World War II.
4. Go on a photo excursion
When we were in Bora Bora a few years ago, we hired a speed boat and photographer to take us around the island to capture stunning photos of Bora Bora and of ourselves in that incredible environment. It was one of the funnest things we did. It was a private tour and we could zip around to anywhere we wanted to go.
5. Have a Private Motu Picnic
You can arrange for picnic at any resort you’re staying at, but one of the greatest things to do in Bora Bora is pack a picnic and wander a bit farther than your resort. There are a number of companies, like Moana Jet Boat Tours, that specialize in providing private Motu picnic excursions where you’ll be treated to a picnic in a remote spot. For even more privacy, helicopter tours will lead you further afield.
6. Take a Glass Bottom Boat Tour
A great way to see all the tropical fish and sea life in the crystal blue waters of Bora Bora is to go out on a glass bottom boat tour. You’ll be able to admire the colorful fish right beneath your feet, take pictures and see a bit of the island, all at the same time.
7. Have a Romantic Dinner on the Beach
It’s no secret that Bora Bora is full of couples celebrating honeymoons or anniversaries. If you’re one of them, or even if you’re just in a romantic mood, you may want to skip the usual restaurants and have a romantic dinner on the beach with candlelight and moonlight illuminating the Mountain and the views that surround you.
8. Go to a Polynesian Dinner Show
Many of the area resorts, like the Four Seasons, provide entertainment in the form of a Polynesian dinner show once or twice a week. If you have the opportunity to attend one, it’s highly suggested. The dancers and fire performers are very good. Contact your resort for more information on when and what type of shows they will have.
9. Go On a Circle Island Jet Ski Adventure
A great way to see the whole island is to take a 2-hour jet ski trip around the entire island. Companies like Tahiti Excursions will take you on a guided 2-hour tour around the island on a high-speed adventure. Go with a group or reserve a private tour.
10. Go Parasailing
Since the water is so clear, you can see manta rays, fish and sharks swimming in the water as you glide overhead while parasailing, and that’s not to mention the beautiful views all around you. Parasailing in Bora Bora is one of the best ways to see the island.
These are just 10 of the numerous activities you can find to do in Bora Bora. There are dozens of other things to do in Bora Bora, and you don’t even have to do the research yourself most of the time. Many of the resorts, like the Four Seasons, have an excursion booklet you can flip through until you find the perfect activity that fits you.
Where to Stay in Bora Bora
There are more resorts in Bora Bora than you probably think there are. Since it’s a small island, all of the resorts are right on the waterfront, and most of them are virtually floating on top of the water. You’ll find both all-inclusive resorts in Bora Bora and regular nightly rates, with meals not included. Which you choose is entirely up to your budget. Just remember that the food and drinks in Bora Bora are very expensive, so going with a nightly rate may not save you as much as you think over an all-inclusive price.
Here are our recommendations for the best hotels in Bora Bora. You can click to read more reviews of each hotel, or book directly using our affiliate links.
Top nightly-rate resorts in Bora Bora (packages are available that include things like breakfast) In Bora Bora, the norm for resorts is nightly or half-board.
Bora Bora All Inclusive Resorts
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Laura Lynch, creator and writer of Savored Journeys, is an avid world traveler, certified wine expert, and international food specialist. She has written about travel and food for over 20 years and has visited 70+ countries.