My Purrfect Life

Hidden Gems of Moorea

I loved this island. Below is all of the amazing places we visited.  We took the Aremiti Ferry from Tahiti to Moorea. We were able to bring our car on board and it was about a 40 min trip. I do recommend having a rental car. It makes it much easier to get around the island and sight see!

Things to See and Do:

Moorea Juice Factory and Distillery 

You can enjoy a tasting of their juices and liquors in the store and can go tour the factory on your own. Tahiti drink is what they are known for. Its a blend of juices and alcohol which you pour over ice. They were making “ananas” (pineapple) juice at the factory. The entire place smelled of sweet, fresh pineapple. I recommend purchasing duty free liquor at LAX or wherever your layover is. We used the fresh juices to mix with vodka and tequila! We purchased pineapple champagne and wine to bring home.

Belvedere lookout

The lookout was a short trip from the juice factory. The views were amazing. I suggest going in the morning before some of the clouds set in so you have a better view. It was an easy drive up to the top and bring your camera!

Toatea lookout

This gorgeous view point is the definition of French Polynesia! The lookout was close tot he ferry stop and on the was to our airbnb. The view is overlooking the Sofitel Hotel and their over water bungalows. This viewpoint is the definition of French Polynesia. Be sure to get a picture of the gecko!

Other Fun Ideas

Our host at our Airbnb suggested to buy a whole fish to grill and then use chum to feed sharks and rays outside out airbnb but we couldn’t find any the day we drove around. We also drove almost the entire island in search of  flower crowns. The only place we found them was by taking a left out of the ferry port. They smelled amazing and only cost 1500 CFP. I wish they lasted forever. 

 

 Manava Resort

French Polynesia Dance Shows are offered at a few of the resorts. We were not staying at the Hilton when they offered their show so we attended the show at Manava. They take reservations for dinner which have closer seating, but we sat at a high top and enjoyed some amazing cocktails.  The show is free they just request you purchase a drink or three!!

 

Where to Eat:

Moorea Beach Cafe

The café was a quick walk from out Airbnb so we stopped for happy hour! The view was so amazing we decided to stay for dinner. We were the only ones there at 6:30 pm but the service was great along with the cute beach cat! I ordered the wasabi crusted tuna with wasabi mashed potatoes and Ryan had the parrot fish with truffle gnocchi. We tried octopus pizza for the first time and it was fabulous.

Rudys 

 Also very easy to walk to from out Airbnb. It was small and adorable spot with great service. I ordered a white French wine from the Alcace region (3200 CFP) and paired that with grilled wahoo and crab stuffed parrot fish with signature sauces. Trio platter shrimp, fish and calamari deep fried was our appetizer and our dessert was so refreshing. This family owned restaurant is a MUST!

Te Honu Iti

Do not miss this! Located in Cook’s Bay, the experience was unlike any other.  Our hotel arranged for them to send a shuttle to pick you up and take you back home. Our experience lasted 2.5 hours but it comes with free entertainment. You can ask to sit right next to the water where nurse sharks, black tip sharks and stingrays come to swim by. They actually feed them chum so they swim come closer.  I had a glass of rose with shrimp/mahi stuffed ravioli, while Ryan had a beer with beef Bolognese.  I love that this was a small business with integrity and great food. Please note the service was very slow as there only had one gentleman to seat, order and serve, but it’s an authentic French experience.

Carameline

Breakfast stop everyday!!! This cute French bakery had amazing quiche Lorraine with bacon, caramelized onion and cheese, along with fabulous French pastries. Although I have had Italian cappuccino, the Polynesian cappuccino with whipped cream topped with cocoa powder was a whole other experience. It was literally across the street from our Airbnb.

IMG_3988

Snack Didier 

Didier was right next door to our Airbnb.  They make their own BBQ sauce, which you can purchase, salad dressing and “tarter” sauce, which was a darker soy looking and not super thick. I ordered the tartare and nems (spring rolls) and Ryan ordered the fried shrimp. It was all so amazing. Our server was a young gentleman who was so adorable. He worked so hard to speak English, yet we should have learned a bit more French. They also have the best sign outside for a great IG shot!

Where to Stay:

Our Airbnb was perfect, Enjoy Villa. We had our own infinity pool overlooking the ocean. The house was close to the bank, market and other fun shops. We had access to kayaks and the snorkeling was amazing, you just had to swim out a bit. It was so nice to relax, lay out and listen to music in private. It was a very modern house with 2 rooms with AC and open air with the side opening up to the pool. It was more affordable than you think. Private pool to do whatever you want, full kitchen and amazing views. Yes the resorts and bungalows are beautiful but this can not be missed.

We spent 2 nights at Hilton Moorea. When you arrived on the property, they give you a beautiful fresh floral lei and use a golf cart to bring you to your room. Since we traveled with my sister and her husband, we were smart and booked our panoramic overwater bungalow rooms on separate nights so we could enjoy the benefits with out the extra cost. I highly recommend booking the over water bungalow for at least one night. But the garden view room was just as amazing with a private pool! Hilton surprised us with champagne, cookies and 2 free Rhum drinks to use at the bar. Honestly the views from our room were breath taking.

The snorkeling right off our balcony was the best I have ever seen. The further out you swam, the better. We saw sea cucumbers, black point sharks, stingrays, trigger fish and huge clams. Eimio bar at the Hilton has BOGO happy hour at bar 4-7pm! I loved the blended mango and passion fruit margaritas. They also have a creperie restaurant where every night sharks and stingrays come to swim. Having a Hilton card gave me status to enjoy complimentary breakfast buffet. We sat outside over looking the beach enjoying fresh fruit and amazing eggs benedict. 

Hilton was renovating some of their bungalows so they offered $50/day to accommodate the noise but we didn’t notice. They also offered a free boat ride to snorkel at a near by bay. The ride was beautiful. We passed a sunken WWII ship, Intercontinental Resort and saw the island from a new view. The bay was mostly shallow with a few deep sections. The stingrays came right up to you. We saw different varieties of fish and found the crown of thorns starfish, which is highly poisonous. Hilton even warned us if we see one to contact them so they could remove it from their property. Ryan found a huge moray eel just hanging out of a rock. I have never swam so fast or screamed so loud.

We chose the Hilton over Sofitel or Intercontinental for a few reasons. One, both my sister and I have diamond status at Hilton, thank god for owning my own business. Secondly, the Hilton was on the other side of the island so the water was calmer, their bungalows were further out in the water and price wise was similar to the other locations. We noticed on a boat ride past the Intercontinental that their “overwater: bungalows were basically your deck was over the water and the rest was on land. The third reason was the Sofitel was right next the port making it really busy near the resort.

 

Other things to do we missed:

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