Maupiti Travel Guide

  • Maupiti
    by cgf
  • deserted beach on Motu Tiapaa
    deserted beach on Motu Tiapaa
    by Helga67
  • The island goes well with champagne!
    The island goes well with champagne!
    by Geisha_Girl

Maupiti Things to Do

  • Visit the main village!

    Maupiti is still considered an "unexploited gem" of all of the Society Islands. It is also the smallest and most isolated island of what they call the "Leeward Group."The principal village, Vai ea, probably has the most activity in the community.You can do tours of the interior island - hiking and visits to the cascades, and shopping for arts and...

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  • "Walking shells"

    On the white sand beaches on the motus you are never alone. And no, I'm not talking about people but about those little shells.Just watch the sand and you will notice several small shells walking around. So watch out where to put your feet.

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  • Waterfront

    Contrary to the motus, you won't find a lot of beaches on the main island. There is, however, a lovely beach at point Tereia. From here you can walk across the lagoon to the motu, in waste-deep water.

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  • Mount Teurafaatiu

    In the center of the main island of Maupiti there is a unique volcanic mountain range. Mount Teurafaatiu has a single peak with sharp sides overlooking the village of Vaiea.

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  • Marae Vaiahu

    Maupiti is rich in remains from the past. Between the points of Puoroo and Pohiva, on the North coast, ancient marae succede one another along the lagoon. These are family marae. There are some fifty of them on the island of Maupiti.The non restored Vaiahu Marae in Vaiea includes a large trunk made of white coral hiding four craved stones shaped...

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  • Vaiea

    Vaiea is the main village of the island where the town hall, schools, post office, church and a few small stores and snack shops are located. The village was hurt badly by the Cyclone Osea that hit town in November 1997 but has mostly recovered from the destruction.

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Maupiti Restaurants

  • Snack Tarona

    This little snackbar has an open-air dining shelter in the back overlooking the lagoon. It offers different snacks. It was a good place to stay during the heat of the day. Poisson cru: raw tuna with fresh vegetables (onions, tomatoes, cucumber, red and green bell peppers) marinated in lemon juice and coconut milk.

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  • Traditional Polynesian Cooking

    Family style meals are served at a thatched roof dining shelter beside the beach.The price for a bungalow includes breakfast and dining. For lunch you need to add 2000 CFP (17 EUR) per person.Keep in mind that you are located on a motu where you won't find any restaurants.Breakfast is real French and consists of French bread and jam.Lunch and...

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  • Maupiti Hotels

    0 Hotels in Maupiti

Maupiti Nightlife

  • Hellooooooo Uncle!

    Here comes a Black tip and 5 of his trusty sidekicks!It was amazing to watch them in action. These aren't man-eating sharks like you see in the movies. The black tip sharks that roam the lagoons only feed on food that's already dead. They won't touch any of the other species if they're still alive.Even if you encounter one (face to face) while...

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  • Share your LEFTOVERS!!

    As I mentioned, our gracious hostess, Jeanine, was an eccentric woman with a Polynesian twist!After our dinner one evening, she shared with us the story about her ancient ancestors who were reincarnated as sharks. Therefore, she has no fear of sharks.The lagoon in Maupiti is filled with lots of exotic fish, rays, and sharks. After dinner, she asked...

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  • Watch the sunset

    As there are no bars or discotheques on the island, the only thing you can do is to enjoy the sunset. From Motu Tiapaa you can admire the sunset at about 5:30 pm.Bring a good book to read in bed under your mosquito net or maybe there are some other things to do ;-) it's up to you.Don't go to bed too late, the sun rises at 6 am and you will be...

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Maupiti Transportation

  • Enjoy the Blue Lagoon

    The ride from the airport to your destination, either on the mainland or another nearby motu, takes just minutes.The ride takes you through the beautiful lagoon and scenic mountain landscapes that surround the island.

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  • You can land on the Motu!

    Air Tahiti can get you to the island of Maupiti 4 times a week.Flights arrive from Papeete, Raiatea, and Bora Bora.The airport is located on a motu, so you'll need to get from the motu to the mainland, or to another nearby motu, by boat. All hotels and pensions pick up their arriving guests........some for free, and some can charge as much as 2000...

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  • On foot

    You can walk around the main island of Maupiti in about two or three hours. A road encircles the island for about 10 km (6 miles).

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Maupiti Local Customs

  • Anti-cyclone houses

    In November 1997 a lot of the houses on Maupiti were destroyed by cyclone Osea. French military troops were sent to Maupiti to rebuild the village, and most of the houses are now of the MTR variety, which is a box-like 'anti-cyclone' design, built on stilts. Each family adds their own touch of flowers and coloured leaves planted around the houses...

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  • Smoke

    In the late afternoon you will notice smoke on the different motus and main island. People burn coconut shells to chase away the mosquitoes at night.

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  • Marae

    A marae is a traditional Polynesian temple of coral or basaltic stone, usually built with an altar at one end.

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Maupiti Warnings and Dangers

  • Narrow and dangerous pass

    Maupiti has only one pass where all boats have to enter the lagoon. This pass, however, is very narrow and known as dangerous especially at rough sea. This often forces boats to wait for the right time to go through it or to renounce entering the lagoon.

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  • Nono

    Whether you want it or not, you will encounter the "nono", especially on the motus. This is a minuscule "no-see-um" sand fly with a nasty sting. They are most common at daybreak and late in the afternoon, when they come to chew on your ankles. You might not even know you've been bitten until hours later, when the itching starts.Do not scratch it,...

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Maupiti What to Pack

  • Helga67's Profile Photo

    by Helga67 Updated May 31, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Loose-fitting clothing (cotton is best), open-toed sandals. Be sure to include aqua socks or protective footgear for walking on the coral reef and in the lagoon. Along with a hat, don't forget to pack a good pair of sunglasses.

    Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Bring a good sunscreen and insect repellent

    Photo Equipment: Keep in mind that daylight is very intense in the tropics. Use a polarisation or UV filter and bring a waterproof bag to protect your camera from salt and spray during boat trips.

    Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: Snorkelling equipment

    Miscellaneous: Bring an adapter if you don't have a French plug with two round prongs.

    Tahitian insect repellent

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Maupiti Sports & Outdoors

  • Helga67's Profile Photo

    by Helga67 Updated May 30, 2004

    4.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    For those who enjoy hiking, there's the "three palm tree walk", a three-hour hike to the top of Mount Teurafaatiu, the volcanic peak that dominates the island from a height of 380 m (1,246 feet). At the top, there are the three palm trees that give this walk its name.

    I didn't do this hike but it is said that from the top there's an impressive panoramic view of the lagoon, the pass through the coral reef, the ocean off in the distance and, further away, the island of Bora Bora.

    Enlarge to see the three palm trees
    Related to:
    • Hiking and Walking

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Maupiti Favorites

  • No mass tourism

    Most people coming to French Polynesia visit the island of Bora Bora as it is known as the most beautiful island of French Polynesia.However, if you want to find out what Bora Bora was like 40 years ago, then go to Maupiti. Maupiti offers similar scenery, peace and tranquility but without mass tourism.

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  • Tranquility

    The atmosphere is so different from the other islands. As there are no deluxe hotels, no bars and discotheques, only a few nautical and land activities and excursions, you can still feel the tranquility of the island and the real friendliness of the Tahitian people.

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  • No hotels

    There are no hotels, only a few guest houses or pensions in the village or on the motus. They offer traditional and most typical hospitality.

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