Tahaa stands out from the other islands in French Polynesia despite the region’s fame for its breath-taking scenery and beautiful waters. Tahaa Village, which is only a short boat trip from its more well-known neighbor Bora Bora, is a hidden gem that provides a distinctive fusion of Polynesian culture, immaculate beaches, and top-notch cuisine. This article will discuss Tahaa Village’s top sights, including its well-known vanilla plantations, turquoise lagoons, and local handicrafts.
French Polynesia’s Society Islands archipelago includes the tiny island of Tahaa. Tahaa, also referred to as the “Vanilla Island,” is one of the few locations in the world where large-scale vanilla bean production is practiced. Almost 80% of the vanilla used in French Polynesia is produced on Tahaa, and the island’s vanilla plantations are a popular destination for travelers.
One of the most well-known vanilla plantations on the island is the Taha’a Vanilla Farm. The property has sweeping views of the lagoon and neighboring islands because it is perched atop a small hill. An in-depth description of the vanilla producing process is provided during the plantation’s guided tour, which is available to visitors. The tour includes stops at the curing and processing facilities as well as the vanilla fields, where guests may see the vanilla orchids. The vanilla pods are manually selected, after which they are sun-dried and cured. The development of the vanilla’s characteristic flavor and aroma depends heavily on the curing process, which lasts for several weeks.
There is a restaurant on the vanilla farm that serves food with a vanilla theme. Guests can savor a delectable meal that comprises fish or meat that has been given a vanilla flavoring, as well as a cocktail or dessert that has the same flavoring. Vanilla extract, sugar, and rum with vanilla in it are among the things available in the plantation’s gift store.
Turquoise Lagoons and Coral Reefs
Visitors can have a memorable experience at the spectacular natural wonder that is the lagoon that surrounds Tahaa. The lagoon provides a haven for abundant aquatic life, including colorful fish, sea turtles, and rays, as well as vivid coral reefs. A boat tour that provides a variety of sports, such as diving and snorkeling, allows visitors to explore the lagoon.
One of the nicest places to snorkel in Tahaa is the Coral Garden. The Coral Garden is a boat-accessible location at the southernmost point of the island. A large diversity of coral species and other marine life can be found on the shallow reef known as The Coral Garden. In the crystal-clear water, tourists can snorkel or dive to observe the coral’s vivid hues and forms as well as the fish, sea turtles, and rays that live there.
There are a number of dive businesses on the island that provide diving excursions for tourists who want to learn more about the coral reefs. Sharks and octopuses are among the marine species that divers can see while exploring the deeper portions of the reef.
Traditional Crafts and Artisans
Many talented craftspeople with a focus on traditional crafts live in Tahaa. Visitors can watch these crafts being made in action at nearby studios and workshops, and they can even enroll in lessons to learn these techniques for themselves. The weaving of pandanus leaves into baskets, hats, and mats is one of Tahaa’s most well-liked crafts. Visitors can observe the complicated and highly skilled weaving technique used to manufacture these lovely items at workshops located all throughout the island.
Wood carving, another specialty of Tahaa, is used to make a range of items, including sculptures and traditional Polynesian canoes. Local wood carvers can be seen at work, and visitors can even buy their creations to take home as mementos.
The creation of pareos, traditional Polynesian clothing worn by both men and women, is another well-liked art on Tahaa. Visitors can enroll in a class to learn how to tie and wear pareos as well as the many patterns’ designs and symbolic meanings.
Tahaa is renowned for its exquisite food, which combines French and Polynesian elements. Visitors can experience this distinctive culinary tradition by enrolling in cooking workshops and food tours that highlight regional foods and ingredients.
One of the most well-liked food tours on the island is the Vanilla Island Tour. The tour brings guests to a number of venues that emphasize the island’s production of vanilla, including the Taha’a Vanilla Farm, where guests can sample foods and drinks with vanilla as an ingredient. In addition, the tour makes pit stops at a local rum distillery and a pearl farm where guests may sample fresh oysters and learn about pearl cultivation.
Also, tourists can enroll in cooking workshops that instruct them on how to make Polynesian dishes with regional products. Local chefs instruct the cooking sessions, which give participants first-hand experience preparing delectable Pacific fare.
Poisson cru, a classic Polynesian dish made with raw fish marinated in lime juice and coconut milk, is one of the most well-liked foods in Tahaa. Together with papaya and mango, native fruits like fish, lobster, and shrimp are also very popular dishes.
Relaxation and Beaches
Tahaa is the ideal location for relaxing in the breathtaking surroundings. Many natural beaches on the island are great for swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling. Also available are boat tours of the lagoon and visits to remote beaches that can only be reached by boat.
The Motu Mahana beach, which is on a private island and only accessible to passengers of the Paul Gauguin cruise ship, is one of Tahaa’s most well-known beaches. White sand, crystal-clear water, and a bar serving exotic drinks may all be found at the beach.
A visit to one of the island’s opulent spas, which provide a variety of services like massages, facials, and body scrubs, can also help visitors unwind. One of the most well-liked spas on the island is the Taha’a Island Resort & Spa, which is renowned for its Polynesian-inspired treatments that incorporate native ingredients like vanilla and coconut oil.
Yoga is another well-liked exercise for unwinding and is provided all over the island. On the shore or in the interior of the island’s beautiful flora, visitors can practice quiet yoga.
In conclusion, Tahaa Village in French Polynesia is a hidden gem that provides tourists with a distinctive fusion of local cuisine, culture, and scenic beauty. Tahaa offers something for everyone, from its well-known vanilla plantations to its blue lagoons and traditional crafts. Tahaa is a must-see location for anybody visiting French Polynesia, whether they’re seeking tranquility on a gorgeous beach or an adventure exploring the coral reefs. Everyone who visits the island will have an unforgettable experience because to its rich culture and stunning surroundings.
Our Top FAQ's
Some popular activities to do on Tahaa Island include snorkeling, visiting the island’s vanilla plantations, taking food tours and cooking classes, relaxing on the island’s beautiful beaches, and visiting local crafts markets.
Poisson cru is a traditional Polynesian dish made with raw fish marinated in lime juice and coconut milk. It is popular in Tahaa because the island is surrounded by rich fishing grounds and the dish highlights the island’s fresh seafood.
Vanilla production in Tahaa dates back to the 19th century, when French colonizers introduced vanilla plants to the island. Today, Tahaa is one of the largest vanilla producers in French Polynesia and is known for producing high-quality vanilla.
Some popular beaches in Tahaa include Motu Mahana, which is located on a private island and is exclusive to guests of the Paul Gauguin cruise ship, as well as Tapuamu Beach, Haamene Bay, and Motu Tautau. These beaches offer visitors pristine white sand and crystal clear water for swimming, sunbathing, and snorkeling.