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by Baxter Cepeda, photo editor

Bora Bora is not for the traveler on a tight budget, but it is such a pristine place, even compared to Hawai‘i, that it is worth checking out at least once.

And there is not a more fitting time to visit the French territory then for a honeymoon, because it provides the perfect scenery for newlyweds.

Flying into the island is reason enough to understand why Bora Bora must be experienced. From the air, the main island can be seen surrounded by a turquoise lagoon (arguably unmatched) that is protected by numerous islets and reef.

It is a water world, and the best place to stay is an overwater bunglow. It is more costly then other accommodations for an already expensive trip, but the experience is priceless.

The one drawback: Overwater bunglows are such an interesting experience that getting out and seeing the rest of the island seems almost moot, because it does not get any better. Imagine getting up to a beautiful sunrise, seeing a family of rays swim by, and jumping from your lanai into crystal clear water to swim with them.

But the rest of the island, as well as its surrounding islets, are also must sees, and Bora Bora offers numerous ways to experience the beautiful land and water it has to offer.

For the water, most hotels offer kayaks and canoes, as well as snorkling gear, at no cost. There are glass-bottom boats and cage tours available, as well as rentals of almost every kind of motorized vehicle.

Surfing is available, but it is not easy to find. Huge barreling waves break outside of the reefs, which means there is plenty of energy.

Land offers just as much choice, including off-road tours to World War II relics. Cars and scooters can be rented, and the more athletic visitor can rent a bike and spend a day riding around the main island’s 28-kilometers of mostly paved roads. It’s a great way to go.

The trip around the island offers many different experiences. At one point it is pure country (all forest, no agriculture), where meeting people living the simple life in bamboo shacks is still possible.

A few miles past the forest, a small town demonstrates how even Bora Bora is no different then the rest of the world. Kids pour out of European schools and Catholic churches, and museums add culture.

And then there is Vaitape, the main port, where most of the little traffic and pollution on the island is found.

The perfect way to end the day is with a sunset walk.

All photos by Baxter and Karla Cepeda


This woman is about as old school as Bora Bora gets. When asked for a photograph of her, she looked for and put the flower lei on her head.


Even in a place like Bora Bora, a blessing like this is rare.

Bora Bora from the air at sunset.


Kalamalama, the HPU Student Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Web site designed by Robin Hansson.and maintained by Christina Failma

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