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Know Before You Go
- Don't forget to pack your snorkeling gear. No matter where you are, it's possible to wade into the water and experience the island's spectacular sea life.
- Instead of eating out at a restaurant, find a food truck. Near the bay, you'll find "roulettes" serving fresh fish, rice and vegetables. Not only is the food cheaper, but it's a more authentic Tahiti culinary experience.
- Mini Markets close early in the evening and sell out of fresh goods by the morning. To make sure you get bread and other goods, wake up early to stock up.
- Rent a boat, pack some lunch and spend the day exploring. Discover pristine beaches, perfect snorkeling conditions and the smaller nearby islands.
- Sunscreen and After Sun are essentials for a visit to Tahiti. While you can purchase it on the island, it will be more expensive as almost everything besides locally produced food is imported.
- While mosquitoes are the most active during Tahiti's wet season, it's a good idea to pack insect repellent for any time of the year.
Getting Around Tahiti
- Le Truck buses are how most of the locals get around. The buses cover several routes around the island and cost CPF 100 or CPF 200 per trip. While it used to be possible to flag down a bus from anywhere, they now only pick up passengers at designated bus stops. While it might take you longer to get around, it's one of the best ways to get an authentic taste of life on the island.
- Taxis are an expensive way to get around the island. Fares start at CPF 1350 and CPF 150 for every kilometre. During the evening, the fare increases to CPF 300 per kilometre.
- Bicycles are available for rent in Tahiti. Most hotels will either lend out bikes or charge a small fee. It's a great way to get some exercise and appreciate the beauty of the island at your own pace.
- If you are going to be in Tahiti for a few days, it's worthwhile to hire a car. You can find rentals at the airport or in the capital city of Papeete. You'll be able to see more of the island faster and get to places where public transport doesn't reach.
When is The Best Time to Visit Tahiti?
Tahiti doesn't have a low or high season when it comes hotel prices. Rates are high throughout the year, making weather the deciding factor when visiting this island nation.
The winter months of May to October are Tahiti's dry season. Average temperatures are 26°C and humidity is at its lowest. It's also peak tourist season, so it's best to book your accommodation in advance. Don't forget to pack long pants and a light sweater for the cooler temperatures in the evenings.
Tahiti's long summer season is from November to April. It's characterised by high temperatures, humidity and sporadic rainfall. The showers are mainly during the late afternoon or at night, so they shouldn't put a damper on any outdoor activities planned.
Despite fewer tourist numbers during this time, prices are still high for hotels, flights and tours. The upside is that you will have the beaches all to yourself and there will be less competition for activities like diving, surfing, dolphin exploration and deep sea fishing.
Airports in Tahiti
Faa’a International Airport
Faa’a International Airport is 5 km from the centre of Papeete. It is the only international airport in this area of the French Republic and opened for commercial flights in 1960.
Today, it is the hub for Air Tahiti and Air Tahiti Nui with daily flights to other islands in French Polynesia and international destinations such as Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand and the United States.
Getting to and from Faa’a International Airport
The cheapest way to get from the airport to Papeete is with the Le Truck bus. Outside of the arrivals terminal, you'll find the stop where you can catch a bus to the city centre or other destinations around the island.
If you are unsure which bus to take, ask one of the locals but the Le Truck will usually have its destination painted on the side. Fares start at CPF 120 and go up to CPF 200 in the evening.
The only other way to get into town from the airport is to either arrange a private transfer with your hotel or rent a car.