This is Tahiti's local public bus system, which runs around the island along three basic routes. They operate until 10pm at night, are air-conditioned, reliable and cheap, and will give you an authentic taste of Tahitian life. Make a note that the service doesn't run on all of the islands, where the dirt tracks demand a 4x4 and guide.
Embrace your adventurous side and rent a 4x4 to conquer some of the less developed roads. Go beyond the main tourist attractions into the island interiors – off limits to other vehicles. You'll discover beautifully lush vegetation and breathtaking views. The price isn't cheap, but with islands this size you will definitely save on fuel costs.Chicago's taxi fleet is enormous and you'll have no trouble hailing one down whenever you need to from the sidewalk. A base rate of US$2.24 means they're generally inexpensive if you're travelling a few blocks. However, the driver will expect a 15-20 per cent tip on top of the fare, so don't forget to keep some loose change in your pocket!
Renting a bike lets you explore the magical coastline at your own pace and with the breeze in your hair. Beach-hop your way around the islands, dipping in and out of the clear waters along the way. There aren't too many hills to conquer and you can expect to pay approximately 1500 francs for the day. Check with your guesthouse as they may have some.
Tahitian taxis are expensive, so save a trip by cab for when you really need it. The public bus system stops running at 10pm so you'll probably need to rely on a taxi after an evening out. There's little point in trying to barter them down – the best advice is to pay up and avoid using them where possible.
Tahiti is one of the world's true tropical paradises. With dense, lush mountain vegetation, crystal clear lagoons and warm seas, spend the day enjoying its natural gems like enormous fern grottos and heavenly gardens. Pausing from the natural splendours, spend some time gazing at Gaugin's famous Tahitian paintings in the Gaugin Museum. End the day with a dip underneath rushing waterfalls.
If you're a certified diver, Tahiti's crystal waters are teeming with tropical marine life. Spend time in the waters all over French Polynesia, from Tahiti to Bora Bora and beyond during your trip. Diving centres across the islands have different operating hours so check before you make your way. The Discover Diving 10-Voucher Pass costs just under AU$730 per adult.
Embrace your inner adventurer – and a lot of mud – and hop into a monster 4x4 to tackle the bumpy roads, rivers and forests leading up to Mt Marau and down into Papenoo Valley . Discover thundering waterfalls and breathtaking views which will leave you exhilarated. Prices start from AU$73 per adult for a half day, leaving from your hotel lobby.
Many roads leading into the island's intriguing interior are closed off to normal vehicles. Go on a 4x4 adventure, winding your way along the stunning coastline and then turn in to reach Tahiti's heart. Dip your toes in mountain streams and explore gorgeous fern-covered valleys. Prices start from AU$98.50 for a full day with a guided tour and picnic lunch.
Spend the morning exploring the gorgeous waterfront of Papeete, indulging in some local retail therapy at Le Marche and the Pearl Museum for an extra special purchase. Explore the cultural side of the island at the Gaugin museum and see beautiful famous depictions of island life. That afternoon, hire a bike to explore further afield and the island's stunning beaches. At night, head to the InterContinental Resort Tahiti to take in a local dance show and feast on delicious authentic Tahitian cuisine.
After a heart-racing day tearing around the island, relax with a day spent in the stunning tropical waters. Begin with a morning swim at your hotel resort – all of them have extraordinary pool facilities – and then take it to the sea. If you aren't a diver, snorkeling is the next best thing and lucky swimmers might happen upon some turtles! If not, enjoy plenty of other rainbow corals and marine life. That evening, take a break from the energy of local customs and head to the Western Grill for a hearty steak with a side of ribs!
Are you feeling adventurous? You will be after a day of exploring Tahiti's rugged terrain on a 4x4 mountain safari. Race through mud puddles and rivers on your ascent to the peak of Mount Marau, where you'll be blown away by the incredible views of the water and surrounding islands. Enjoy some cooling off time under cascading waterfalls and learn about the fascinating fauna and flora of this tropical island paradise. That night, continue to indulge all of your senses at a local drag show at The Piano Bar!
The magnificence of the islands and corals that make up French Polynesia are not to be missed from the dizzying heights of a helicopter ride. Polynesia Helicopters offer rides around the islands. This isn't a cheap morning out, but it is a once in a lifetime experience and an incredible way to remember your time in Tahiti. That afternoon, spend your last hours soaking up the sun on one of the island's glorious and pristine beaches. A chance to relax before a long flight home!
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