“Our 2nd Honeymoon in Paradise” Trip Report Index:
- A Bad Start & a Few Hours in Los Angeles
- Air France Lounge – Los Angeles
- Air France Business Class – Los Angeles to Papeete
- Getting to Moorea
- Hilton Moorea, Panoramic Overwater Bungalow #87
- An ATV Tour in Moorea
- Whale & Dolphin Watching in Moorea
- Eating in Moorea
- Moorea to Bora Bora
- Bora Bora Airport To InterContinental Thalasso
- Emerald Overwater Bungalow #204 at the InterContinental Thalasso Bora Bora
- Jet-Skiing in Bora Bora
- A 9 Hour Bike Ride Around Bora Bora
- Eating in the InterContinental Thalasso
- InterContinental Thalasso Coral Garden Suite
- Around the InterContinental Thalasso
- Hilton Bora Bora Nui Resort
- Royal Overwater Villa, Hilton Bora Bora Nui
- Dinner at Villa Mahana
- Eating in the Hilton Bora Bora
- Is Food Expensive in Bora Bora?
- A Day in Papeete
- Air Tahiti Nui and Southwest Flights Home
- Conclusion & Blog Giveaway!
Emily Jablon: After we landed in Tahiti and made our way to the baggage claim, we were greeted by serenaders welcoming us into their country. We had to fill out a tourism survey in addition to the immigration form, and the ladies who collected the tourism survey were dressed in strapless flower print dresses and looked very pretty.
We picked up our luggage, then stopped at the ATM to get some cash. On our way we saw lots of people with real flower garlands to give to their friends or family who arrived. The flowers smelled so nice and sweet!
Daraius: We landed when it was still dark. There were no jet-bridges in the airport, so we walked down the stairs and into the airport. We were finally here!
We were hungry so we stopped at the cafe in the airport. I had a baguette and Emily had a quiche. The cafe accepted credit card, so we didn’t need any cash.
Daraius: My usual strategy is to withdraw cash from an ATM for expenses which I can’t charge to the hotel or have to pay cash for. I pay all our other travel expenses with a credit card which doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees.
There was an ATM on the left of the arrival door, but it wasn’t working, so we went in the opposite direction and used a Banque Socredo ATM.
It was about 6:15 in the morning and we had to get to the ferry terminal in Papeete. We could have taken the public bus (Le Truck), but it was Sunday, we had luggage, and I didn’t want to risk missing the 7:30 ferry to Moorea.
Here are directions on how to take the bus from the airport to the ferry terminal.
It was easy to get a cab. We just made our way to where they line up and I asked what the fare would be before loading our bags. The driver asked for 2,200 XPF (~$24) which was less than the 2,500 XPF (~$27) which I had read online and in the Moon Tahiti guide so I agreed.
Emily Jablon: After ~15 minutes, we arrived at the ferry station. We got out of the cab and a man put our suitcases in a crate, which is then filled with other bags and forklifted into the ferry.
We tried to buy our tickets, but the sign said that tickets would be sold only after 7:00 am.
Daraius: We hung around and bought 2 tickets on the fast ferry (Aremiti 5). Each 1-way ticket cost 1,500 XPF (~$16) and I could use a credit card to pay for the tickets. This was cheaper than the ~$66, per person, to fly from Papeete to Moorea.
It takes ~35 minutes by the fast ferry and ~7 minutes by air. The advantage of flying is that you don’t have to leave the airport in Papeete, but it costs more.
I debated buying the tickets online in advance, but everything I read suggested that the ferry doesn’t sell out (unless you want a spot for a car).
Emily Jablon: We walked up the stairs and boarded the ferry. It was huge and mostly empty.
We climbed the stairs and sat in the open deck on top. It was a bit windy so I was glad I had my sweater.
Daraius: The wind felt great and we were soon approaching Moorea.
We got out of the ferry and went to collect our bags. There were buses outside the ferry station, so it is possible to take the bus to your hotel. There is only 1 road in Moorea which goes around the island and the entrance to the Hilton is right off the road. You can usually just signal to the driver to stop when you want to get on or off.
The Moon guide suggested that they would be no buses on Sunday morning, so I had booked a ride through the Hilton. A little after-the-fact research suggested that the buses ran in tandem with the fast ferry schedule, so we could have saved money by taking the bus. The bus tickets would have been ~$5.
I had emailed the Hilton for a pick-up from the ferry dock for 2,400 XPF (~$26) for both Emily and I. There was a lady with our names on a sign and soon we were on our way to the Hilton.
Emily Jablon: There were gorgeous views on our way to the Hilton in Moorea. We were so excited to be here!