Moorea What is known for

December 5, 2006


Sharks are a regular feature on most Moorea dives, and at Tiki, a place that lies beyond the reef off the northwestern coast, you can always count on seeing black-tipped reef sharks and lemon sharks (some up to ten feet long), plus a full house of tropical fish. It’s a relatively shallow dive, and the water is particularly clear – which is why it’s a favorite with photographers.


Car, bicycle, or scooter, take your pick (the last is the locals’ favorite), because the island’s shoreline road is only about 40 miles around. For the best view on the island, get an early start and turn inland at Opunohu Bay; then follow the signs to Le Belvedere Lookout Point. Near it you’ll pass the ancient Polynesian temple site of Marae Titiroa, one of several early stone structures. The lookout’s sweeping vista of the northern coast – perhaps the finest in Polynesia – is best seen in early-morning light.


Even if you’re not a churchgoer, plan to attend at least one Sunday service on Moorea to hear the choral arrangements of Christian hymns sung in lilting Tahitian. The parishioners are welcoming, and their soaring harmonies are nothing less than ethereal.


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