A Perfect Honeymoon in Tahiti

When Heather & Jesse asked about an October honeymoon to French Polynesia and Tahiti, we knew exactly what would fit them best! We planned an incredible two-week adventure that had a little bit of everything. From relaxing on the beach to a bucket list snorkeling experience to a private overwater bungalow! Here’s their in-depth review of their Tahitian Honeymoon!


We arrived at Papeete, Tahiti fresh off our destination wedding in South Carolina. And were simultaneously exhausted and excited for our upcoming Tahiti adventure.  We arrived at the Hilton hotel well ahead of our check-in time (and ahead of cocktail hour). So, we grabbed some coffees and sat outside by the pool.  The pool area at the Hilton is very nice – clean, well-appointed, and beautiful.  We spent most of the second day in a private two-person chair at the pool, overlooking the ocean.  The restaurant at the hotel was delicious, for dinner and breakfast.  And the service at the hotel in general was outstanding.  Our two-night stay at the Hilton in Tahiti was a great way to ease into the trip.

a stunning sunset over the pool and ocean at a resort in Tahiti
Sunset over the pool at the Hilton Papeete – Tahtiti

Next on our agenda was a ferry transfer from Tahiti to Moorea for a 6-night stay at the Hilton Moorea in a private bungalow.  Moorea’s green mountains and cliffs are stunning, as are the clear waters that surround it. 

It’s worth pointing out that on transfer days, you usually end up with some time to kill before check-in. We used this time to plan some outings with the concierge and lounge by the pool with a drink. While waiting, the staff also taught Jesse how to husk and open a coconut!

Once we checked in, we found our bungalow was a little weathered and not quite as pristine as the Hilton hotel on Papeete, Tahiti, but it was very private with our own little pool.  This first night we took advantage of one of the local restaurants that run shuttles to the hotel and had a nice authentic Moorea dinner.

Moorea Adventures

On our second day, we took an off-road truck tour to visit some of the tourist highlights of the island.  Our local guide Patrick was outstanding.  We went up the very steep road to Magic Mountain, which has great views, then on to the pearl shop and Juice factory for some tasty rums and fruit drinks. 

Tahiti - a honeymoon couple in front of a pineapple field with green mountains in the background in Tahiti

Patrick then took us to Belvedere lookout, which is exceptional, and pointed out the variety of fruit and nut trees that grow everywhere. He then showed us the remains of a religious temple and taught us some of the histories of the island natives, which was very moving. We then went to the pineapple fields in the interior of the caldera. Being in there reminded us of a green version of Zion national park.

For dinner, we ate at the creperie which is an overwater at the hotel and it was outstanding.

The next day Heather and I decided to set out on our own for a day of adventure.  We planned a hike using the Alltrails appLes Col des Trois Pinus via Tiki Park. 

The trailhead was about 5 miles from the hotel so we arranged for E-bikes with the concierge and rode these to the trailhead, which was a blast!  The hike was about a 5-mile hike through the jungle, past several of the religious temple remains, and up a moderate hill to the Col des Trois Pinus lookout point. 

The lookout not only has beautiful views of Moorea’s two bays below and the high peaks above, but it also has a wooden swing affixed to the trees! The return part of the loop took us back through the pineapple fields that we had seen the previous day.

Tahiti - a honeymoon couple standing at a lookout point in Tahiti overlooking the green island with tall mountains and just a glimpse of the ocean in the background

This bike & hike day was one of the highlights of the trip for us. 

This night we took a shuttle to Rudy’s restaurant, which was our favorite dining of the entire trip.  Classic, French style of cooking, geared toward local ingredients (the Parrotfish was amazing).  Rudy’s was so good we went back two nights later! 

Moorea Relaxation

The next day we lounged on the beach all day at the resort, a welcome day of relaxation.  The service and amenities were again outstanding.  Great snorkeling is available right from the hotel’s beachfront, and the pool is steps away as well.  The staff regularly checks in for drinks or food, without being intrusive.

 For dinner we did the buffet and Polynesian show, which we found to be a little underwhelming in terms of the food and the show. 

Snorkel Adventures

The following day we had arranged for a private ocean snorkeling tour with Moorea Ocean Adventures.  Neither of us knew really what to expect and we certainly couldn’t have anticipated how this day went.  The crew consisted of the captain, and wildlife specialist, and a professional photographer who happened to be on board doing some work for the company.  When we got on board, they were incredibly welcoming and tried to get a real feel for how adventurous we were.  They asked what sea life we wanted to see, and we said we were game for anything. 

They asked, “would you like to swim with humpback whales?”… ummm, yes!!

Apparently, French Polynesia is one of only 3 places in the world you can do this, and we just happened to be in the right time window for it.

Tahiti- a humpback whale underneath the waves in Tahiti
The Humpback whale that WE SWAM WITH!

  So we set out chasing humpbacks and listening for their calls for an hour or so until we finally got in the water near a whale that was “singing” non-stop.  Seeing the whale underwater within about 50 feet of us was absolutely surreal; a totally unique experience.  The photographer captured an amazing photo from our outing that he shared with us. 

After the whales, we went and swam with sea turtles, which was also incredible but seemed to pale in comparison.

We are overjoyed that Ann recommended this tour; it was worth every penny spent on it and then some!

Tahiti - blue waters and palm trees in a small Tahiti cove

The next morning we did a run/hike up Rotui (the trailhead is very close to the hotel), which rises very steep and provides great views of the hotel and ocean.  The trail is rather rugged and a guide was recommended to go all the way up, so we cut the hike short. 

a view of the Hilton Moorea resort from the hike up Mount Rotui. Green trees, blue waters and a perfect place for a Tahiti honeymoon

We decided to rent a car this day to tour the perimeter of the island.  Other than some souvenir shopping, this was a bust.  There’s really not much else to do or see via car, so we recommend against this. 

Moorea Overall Thoughts

a honeymoon couple toasts with a glass of wine in Tahiti

Some favorite foods and drink from our stay on Moorea: poisson cru, parrotfish at Rudy’s, mahi galette at the creperie, and always croissants at breakfast.

A few overall thoughts to share about the Hilton Moorea: On the positive side, the location is absolutely beautiful, the staff is very welcoming and attentive, there are a ton of great outings that the concierge will help book, the grounds are very clean, and the island itself is very friendly and welcoming and safe. 

On the negative side, the bungalows are a little weathered – in fact, our air conditioner broke on a couple of occasions.  The staff was very responsive in temporarily fixing it, but it was an inconvenience.  Additionally, the furniture around the pool and beach was dated, there was a fair amount of bird droppings on the grounds, the workout facilities were underwhelming,  and the food at the hotel was good, but not up to the quality of the Hilton Papeete, or the Taha’a resort still to come. 

Taha’a Pearl Resort & Overwater Bungalow

The next day was our plane-plane-boat transfer day to Taha’a for four nights in an overwater bungalow at Taha’a Pearl Resorts.  We first flew from Moorea back to Tahiti, where we had a long delay.  This was really the only bummer of the trip, having to wait in the Papeete airport for a couple extra hours for our flight to Raitea. 

looking down the walkway of a series of overwater bungalows in Taha'a  for a Tahiti honeymoon

When we finally did get to Raitea it was dark and we still had a boat ride to Taha’a Pearl Resorts, but as soon as we landed we got treated so well!  The resort staff was there to get our bags and load us onto the boat which was so charming.  We were then greeted on the dock at the resort and it was immediately clear that this resort was a step up. 

the view from inside a private overwater bungalow in Tahiti - wooded roof and a window overlooking the bay for a perfect Tahiti honeymoon

Our overwater bungalow was like something out of a magazine (or Instagram…). Private, incredible views and a window in the floor to watch the fish and rays.

Our first full day on Taha’a it was POURING.  So Heather booked a massage that was amazing. And we decided to book an excursion – a truck tour of the main island – for the next day since the weather looked a little ominous. 

fire dancers on the beach in Tahiti celebrating a Tahiti honeymoon

We took advantage of happy hour and then a buffet dinner and show. This time the buffet and show exceeded expectations and the fire dance was very impressive.

Around Taha’a

When we woke up to clear skies we were a little bummed that we weren’t just laying on the beach. But the truck tour ended up being totally worth it.  We were the only two on the truck with our lovely and charming guide Sylvie.  First stop was the Pari Pari distillery, which was fascinating and full of good smells and tastes.  The next stop was the Iaorana Pearl Farm which was such an incredible experience.  A transplant from New Zealand took a TON of time to explain to us the process of raising the oysters and how they form the famous black pearls.  Truly a unique and highly recommended stop. 

Sylvie then took us all around the island and showed us how to open coconuts before bringing us to the vanilla farm. There we learned about the processing of the famous vanilla beans.  The smells here were incredible too and we left with an armful of vanilla products.  On the return leg of the tour, it just so happened that the big outrigger canoe race was passing by Taha’a. So we got to enjoy the celebration that accompanies that race. 

We bid farewell to Sylvie and headed back to the resort for dinner.  We only ate at the main restaurant at the hotel, which was excellent, but we both wished we had a little more variety.  There is a second, fancier restaurant that is by reservation only and books fast. We recommend looking into that well in advance. 

Taha’a Relaxation

a honeymoon couple on vacation in Tahiti with blue water and overwater bungalows in the background

We spent the rest of our time on Taha’a at the resort on the beach, in the coral gardens, or just relaxing at our bungalow. This stay was really luxurious and beautiful and we loved the remoteness and privacy of Taha’a.

The resort sits on its own little island but has everything you need for a multi-night stay.  The grounds are immaculate and quite large.  There are multiple little private nooks and comfy sitting areas.  The pool is spectacular. And right next to it is a lunch restaurant where you can have your feet in the sand. 

All the little details – from an exceptional workout room to modern outdoor furniture, to ponchos and umbrellas provided when raining, to the friendliness of the staff when they ride by on their bicycles – put this resort over the top.

the Taha'a Pearls resort in Tahiti overwater bungalows and dining tables set up looking out over the blue water perfect for a Tahiti honeymoon

Finally, we boarded the boat from Taha’a Pearl Resort to return to Raitea Airport. Then from there a flight to Papeete airport.  We had about a 6-hour layover in Tahiti before our overnight flight back to Los Angeles.  So…we went for one more adventure and took a taxi back to our original stop of the Hilton Papeete hotel. Having one final excellent meal and bottle of wine, sitting by the pool, under the night sky, reveling our trip in French Polynesia. This was a much more enjoyable way to pass the time, rather than sitting in the airport!

Why use a Travel Agent for a Honeymoon in Tahiti?

Booking this trip with Ann was such a pleasant and stress-reducing experience.  All of her recommendations were excellent, and her knowledge of Tahiti and attention to detail with the itinerary was on point.  The island transfers and outing vouchers would be difficult to handle for a first-time visitor to Tahiti on their own, but Ann’s thorough day-by-day break down, information and preparation for us made this once in a lifetime experience seamless.

The Best Honeymoon Destinations (by Month)

Honeymoons by Month Pin
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The majority of couples still take their honeymoons shortly after the wedding. Which means that honeymooners have to consider seasonality and find a destination that works well for their specific travel dates. But how do you know which places are the best at different times of year? Don’t worry — we’ve got you covered, with our handy guide to the best honeymoon destinations by month!

The Weather

Before we get to the months, there are a few criteria to keep in mind. First is, of course, the weather.

Sunset beach Costa Rica Honeymoons

Beachy and tropical islands often have just two seasons: Dry and Rainy. These seasons tend to be the opposite on different sides of the world. So no matter what month you travel in, you can find a beautiful beachy location somewhere.

[Photo Credit: Katey & Oliver via Shared Adventures – read about their Costa Rica Honeymoon here!]

The Crowds

a piazza in Rome full of tourists, ideal for Honeymoons

The other important factor to consider is crowds. Certain months see high crowds for a reason. Everyone is excited to experience the best weather the destination has to offer! Think about whether it’s more important to you to have the best weather possible (despite the crowds). Or would you prefer to risk some less-than-ideal days in exchange for having a sense of seclusion?

[Photo credit: Ann via Shared Adventures]

With these answers in mind, have a look at our monthly guide! We’ve split the destinations into two categories: “High-season” is the best weather with potentially the biggest crowds. “Best balance” has decent weather balanced with smaller crowds.


St. Lucia– high-season
Costa Rica- high-season
Aruba – high-season

Norway high-season
Swiss Alps- best balance

Beachy Honeymoons: For the best weather, look to the equator. Destinations in the Central America region ( including the Caribbean) will be beautiful. They will also be in peak season. January offers clear blue skies, warm seas, and a perfectly idyllic beach vacation. It’s just a bonus that you can escape from the cold!

Snowy Honeymoons: Consider just how cold you truly want it to be. The further north you go, the darker and colder it gets, which gives you the brilliant opportunity to see the Northern Lights. January also tends to be less busy than February in top ski destinations due to the shorter days.


Mexico– high-season
New Zealand- high-season
Hawai’i – best balance

Swiss Alps- high-season
Norway- best balance
California- best balance

Beachy Honeymoons: February is a peak month for tropical travel. The Caribbean, and Mexico are popular with everyone trying to escape the winter cold, including families on school vacation breaks. Hawaii can be a good option, because the weather is temperate year round and spreads the crowds out. And French Polynesia might work, as long as you’re okay with some passing rain showers.

Snowy Honeymoons: How important is skiing? How cold is too cold? If you want to hit the slopes every day of your honeymoon, then February is prime ski season in many winter destinations! If you’re looking for other winter activities, you’ll find the extra cold temps mean a lot of opportunities to snuggle up, fewer crowds, and more daylight hours for adventuring!


The Maldives– best balance
New Zealand- best balance

Iceland- best balance (for snow)
Japan- high-season (mid-March)

Beachy Honeymoons: March is a great honeymoon month to avoid crowds if you don’t mind a little unpredictability. It’s the last month of the dry season in many places. So look more closely at the weather reports and consider spots where a few small showers and cooler nights will enhance your trip.

Snowy Honeymoons: This is the last opportunity of the year to enjoy a snowy destination! Consider what winter activities you’re most excited to experience. Because you start to get longer hours of daylight in March, find a destination that has a lot of outdoor adventures. 

a view of the siene, the eiffle tower and the paris skyline in Paris for Honeymoons
[Photo Credit: Ann via Shared Adventures – read about her April in Paris trip here!]


The Caribbean– best balance
Seychelles- best balance
South Africa- best for combining different regions

Australia- best balance
France- high-season
Napa, California- best balance

Beachy Honeymoons: April is the bridge between the dry and wet seasons. For the best weather, look into heading a bit further towards the southern hemisphere. If you’d rather stay closer to home, the Caribbean will have some unpredictability, but overall beautiful days and lower crowds. 

City Breaks: April is the beginning of perfectly romantic city breaks. Consider locations that you dream of strolling around, admiring the architecture and the flowers in bloom. Look to Europe and Japan for the most beautiful displays of spring blooms. 


Portugal– best balance
Malta- best balance
Costa Rica- best balance
Hawai’i- best balance

Fiji- best balance
Scotland- best balance
Ireland- best balance

Beachy Honeymoons: A perfect shoulder month. If you’re looking to stay closer to home, the Caribbean and Central America will have lower crowds without (yet) the summer rains. Otherwise, you can beat the summer crowds but enjoy the rising temperature on the other side of the globe. Southern Europe and the South Pacific are entering their dry season. Warm weather, low humidity, and the islands practically to yourselves — It makes the long plane trip worth it! 

Sightseeing and Exploring: If you’re not a sunseeker, look into northern Europe. A perfect combination of warm days, cool nights, green countryside, lower crowds, and maybe still a little snow on the utmost mountain peaks. 

lush green mountains of Hawaii an a blue bay on the road to hana. perfect for hawaii honeymoons
[Photo credit: Ann via Shared Adventures Travel]


Hawai’i– high-season
Antigua- best balance
St. Lucia- best balance

Fiji- high-season
Greece- best balance
Alaska- best balance

Beachy Honeymoons: June is the beginning of hurricane season in the Caribbean, but it’s still too early for major risk. This is a good month for sun-seekers. Look for spots where you can sneak in before the storm risk increases in late summer.

City Breaks: June is an excellent month for city breaks. Everything is open and waiting, but the true heat of summer hasn’t settled into the cobblestones yet. Look for cities that allow you to get out into nature a bit for a cool breeze.


French Polynesia– high-season
Malta- high-season
Italy- high-season

Ireland- high-season
Canada- high-season

Beachy Honeymoons: French Polynesia and southern Europe swell to their peak popularity. Honeymooners in July will almost certainly have to share the beaches with plenty of other travelers.

Outdoorsy Honeymoons: July is the peak month for many cooler-weather destinations that are just coming into their own at this time of year. Look to the north to find green fields, hiking trails, cool mountain lakes, fresh breezes, and unending hours of daylight.


Kenya & Tanzania– high-season
Mozambique- high-season
Bali- high-season
Vietnam- high-season

Croatia- high-season

The sweltering temps are reaching their peak and everyone is looking for a beach. August is difficult to avoid crowds, especially in Europe where many countries have their summer vacations. Look to the islands in Southeast Asia and Southern Africa for the peak of the dry season. Beautiful beaches and beautiful clear skies await you there.

driving nin maine
[Photo credit: Liz via Shared Adventures Travel – read about a New England Roatrip here!]


Hawai’i – best balance
French Polynesia- best balance
Bali- best balance
Greece- best balance

Croatia- best balance
Italy- best balance
Japan-best balance
The UKbest balance

Beachy Honeymoons: This is the perfect moment to swoop in and enjoy the last warm days without all the crowds. Look to the most popular summer beach destinations. You’ll find amazing weather, still-warm seas, and fewer people.

City Breaks: Like April, September is a perfect month for city breaks. The sweltering heat dissipates and the nights start to cool. Everything is still open and buzzing from summer, but the temperatures and crowd levels are much more pleasant. This is the time to visit Italy, Greece and Croatia!


Vietnam- best balance
Dubai- best balance
Zambia- high-season

France- best balance
Amsterdam- best balance
Canada-best balance
New England- high-season

Beachy Honeymoons: This is the best time to visit those destinations that are almost unbearably hot in summer. While October brings unpredictability, it also brings good opportunities to explore beyond the beach. 

Cool Honeymoons: Stunning fall foliage is the main focus of an October honeymoon in North America and Europe. While you may have a mixture of sun and rain, October’s quiet crispness in the cities will only add to the romantic atmosphere.


Thailand-best balance
The Maldives- high-season
Jamaica- best balance

Australia- high-season
Argentina- best balance
Chile- best balance

November is all about the Southern Hemisphere. While the north experiences rain and cloudy skies, the south is right at the beginning of summer. The weather isn’t too hot yet and the crowds aren’t too big, so overall you want to consider the bottom half of the world. It’s also a good time for the Caribbean, as the hurricane risk is nearly past, and crowds ten to be lower.


The Caribbean-high-season
Mexico– high-season
Thailand– high-season
Bali- high-season

Copenhagen- best holiday markets
Austria- best holiday markets
Prague- best holiday markets

Beachy Honeymoons: The holiday season sees everyone in the north escaping the cold for beautiful beaches. Consider places near to the equator on both sides of the world- South East Asia, The Caribbean, and Mexico are all in their stride. 

Snowy Honeymoons: The beginning of snow, cold temperatures, and beautiful holiday markets! While snow is a little unpredictable, consider those cold-weather cities with booming holiday markets as the perfect cozy romantic destinations. 

Where to find your Overwater Bungalow paradise

The brilliant idea of over-water hotel suites was first initiated in the 1960s and they have since become synonymous with romantic luxury. Whether you’re looking for a honeymoon, anniversary or just a romantic getaway, they’ve likely crossed your mind. Tropical islands, turquoise blue waters, incredible sea life, and jaw-dropping sunsets – these bungalows live up to their hype! But which overwater bungalow destination is right for you?

Where you choose to have your overwater bungalow experience depends on what kind of vacation you are looking for and what kind of traveler you are! We’ve created a quick-comparison table to help accentuate the big-picture differences.

quick comparision guide for overwater bungalow destinations

This is just the first glance. If you really want to dive into the details of what makes each location magical keep reading below. Or just reach out to us!

What can I expect from an OWB?

Overwater bungalows (OWBs) or overwater villas are essentially hotel suites built on stilts over the calm water of a lagoon in an atoll or a small island. Typically, the rooms are connected by a wooden walkway that leads out from the main beach. Depending on which destination and which resort you choose, you’ll find some differences between them but there are a few things that you can expect no matter where you go:

over water bungalows at the Hilton Moorea
The Hilton, Moorea ( Photo Credit: Shared Adventures Travel)
a couple sitting on the back terrace of their overwater bungalow with private jacuzzi and direct access to the sea in the Maldives

Seclusion & Privacy: With only a handful of neighbors, it’s easy to enjoy a feeling of privacy and exclusivity at an overwater bungalow resort. With access to the lagoon from your terrace, plus a personal jacuzzi or plunge pool, and an uninterrupted view of the sea, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped into your own private oasis.

( Photo Credit: GlobalCareerBook.com via Unsplash)

Snorkeling & Diving: Since the overwater bungalows are often built near coral reefs you can expect some availability of snorkeling (and/or diving) just feet from your front door. But the amount and quality of sea life under your OWB does vary by destination and resort, so be sure to ask about this if it’s important to you.

Resort-like Amenities: In addition to your own private space in the bungalow, you’ll have access to all the typical resort amenities — including restaurants, pools, spa treatments, room service, and sometimes even a private butler! 

A window under the sea: Most overwater bungalows have a glass panel in the floor with a light so you can watch the marine life underneath your bungalow from inside the room. You don’t have to get wet to see the fish! 

the balcony view of an over water bungalow in Moorea

A View: You are guaranteed a room with a view and personal ocean-front loungers! It’s easy to stay connected to the beach and the water when the sea is under your feet!

(Photo Credit: Meagan & Cameron via Shared Adventures Travel)

An overwater bungalow will always give you a connection to the water like none other, a sense of romantic seclusion and luxury amenities. Now, where should you go to get this incredible experience?

The Maldives

If relaxing on a soft white sand beach or chilling on the terrace with a good book and your feet trailing in the water is your idea of a perfect vacation, then the Maldives are for you. The focus of these islands is one word: Relaxation. 

aerial shot of a private island with overwater bungalows in a deep blue sea in the Maldives

Located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, this collection of islands is perfect for overwater bungalows. Flat, with plenty of white-sand beaches that give off desert island vibes, you can count on a wide uninterrupted view of the sea. Since many of these resorts are on their own private islands, you won’t do too much external adventuring.

(Photo Credit:Ahmed Raavi via Unsplash)

aerial shot of overwater villas with waterslides in the Maldives

The Maldives are home to two-thirds of the world’s overwater bungalows. This gives you a huge range of styles to choose from. From simple, rustic, budget-friendly options to huge luxury villas with a waterslide! The sky is the limit in the Maldives. More options also means more types of travelers — you can expect to find a mix of honeymooners, families, and groups at these resorts.

(Photo Credit: Ishan via Unsplash)

The Caribbean & Mexico

Brand new to the game, the Caribbean and Mexico have recently started to offer a few overwater bungalows. Now you can have everything you already love about the Caribbean or Mexico plus those perfect Instagram pics. You’ll be able to hop on a flight in the morning and have a piña colada in your hand by dinner!

aerial shot of overwater bungalows with a heart shaped walkway in Jamaica

The overwater bungalows are attached to already existing resorts so along with a few more neighbors comes all the amenities, beaches, and facilities the resort usually provides. Overwater bungalows in this area are also more likely to come with private butler service!

(Photo Credit: Juan Jose via Unsplash)

Long stretches of beach mean long romantic walks are always available and you’ll have a good balance of peaceful relaxation and outside excursions or adventures. While you’ll save money on the flight, the bungalows themselves are every bit as expensive as their far-flung counterparts. So if you’re looking for the experience (and the photo opportunities) but are more budget-conscious, we recommend a split-stay. Stay a few nights in the resort’s beach-front suites and end the trip with a few nights in the overwater bungalow. 

French Polynesia

The original, the quintessential, and (some would say) the best. Tahiti, Moorea, and Bora Bora were the first islands to have overwater bungalows and they continue to improve and expand today. With exteriors in the style of traditional Tahitian huts, but with all the modern luxuries of a sleek hotel inside, these overwater bungalows will give you a classic overwater experience. But don’t just take it from us — clients Meagan and Cameron recently celebrated their honeymoon in Moorea and called it “the definition of paradise!”

a view of the Moorea mountains from the sea

The French Polynesian Islands formed from volcanic activity, which resulted in a stunning and varied landscape. Some islands (like Moorea) feature lush green mountains rising out of the sea. Others (like Bora Bora) are atolls with a ring of tiny islands surrounding a placid lagoon. Most visitors island-hop to at least two different locations to get the best and broadest experience.

(Photo Credit: Meagan and Cameron via Shared Adventures Travel)

If you’re ready to fine-tune which OWB resort is a perfect match for you and your partner let us know! There are only about 200 OWB resorts in the world, so if you’re excited to try this incredible, romantic, one-of-a-kind experience we recommend planning well in advance! 

A slice of Paradise

Meagan and Cameron were looking for a unique honeymoon experience. Something they would remember forever, outdoorsy, and intimate. I knew the perfect slice of paradise for them: Moorea. A French Polynesian Island with stunning jungles and world-class snorkeling. Being able to swim with turtles from the balcony of their overwater bungalow at Manava Beach Resort all week was just the start of their unforgettable adventure in paradise!

Here’s their trip report:

HI Ann! I know you said I could keep it short, but there is SO much to say lol. Thank you for everything 🙂 🙂 we absolutely LOVED our trip!! Moorea is the definition of Paradise! The lush vegetation and the crystal clear lagoon had me staring at the views in awe every single day.

a view of the Moorea mountains from the sea

I must have said a million times that the views just do not get old! We knew that it was their rainy season with rain expected daily, which we didn’t care at all, you are still in paradise. We learned that the mornings are the best for activities with sunshine and the rains come later in the afternoon/overnight.

sunrise off the deck of an over water bungalow in Moorea

We were up at sunrise daily and took advantage of the deck off of the bungalow to get a morning snorkel in.

We saw and swam with the same couple of turtles and sharks right off our bungalow each morning! We brought our own underwater cameras for all of the wildlife and kayaked out into the lagoon to see everything around us.

A beautifully colored fish underwater in Moorea Tahiti

There were two Polynesian themed nights as well with a buffet dinner (oops we really wanted to explore the area and check out local restaurants and skipped this). The food is amazing! Expensive like we heard, but SO good and they give you large portions.

happy couple on a chartered boat

Cameron surprised me with a chartered boat from Moorea Ocean Adventures and I can happily say he made one of my lifelong bucket list dreams come true!

We swam with dolphins in the wild, along with sharks, rays, turtles and a TON of other fish. They were INCREDIBLE. It’s a private charter and they send you a captain and a marine biologist. They bring snorkel gear, beverages, and take a video of the entire experience–in the boat and underwater.
They edit the video for you too, we got it back a week later and I can honestly say it was better than some of the wedding videos I have seen!! It was more exciting to receive too lol.
They are so incredibly knowledgeable about the area, and the species, and you can tell they take pride in their work. They asked us our main goals and expectations for the day before we took off and were SO eager to find dolphins with us.
You could tell they loved and appreciated the sea and its creatures! I couldn’t say enough positive things about our experience with that company, even the communication Cameron had before and after with them. 5 stars for sure!

Palms, beach, and over water bungalows honeymoon paradise in Moorea

Biggest suggestions for people considering Moorea:
-If you go during the rainy season (November-February) be sure to be active morning people-the resort had umbrellas for everyone throughout the stay and we could walk to town so that was great!
– Rent a car and drive the island–it takes 90 minutes, there is one road around it, and the speed limit is either 60km or 35km if you are driving through a town or school zone.

The winding road through lush jungle in moorea

-There really is no nightlife so don’t expect any nightclubs, bars, or anything like that, besides what the resorts offer in their lounges and bars.

success at Moorea waterfall

Find the waterfall and hike to it!

– Directions [for the waterfall] are in various reviews on trip advisor, don’t listen to the reviews that say its an easy 20 min walk. It’s a decent hike
-Gratuity really isn’t part of their culture, you are told it’s not expected but can be provided for exemplary service. You find a line to leave it on the checks at the resorts, which we did of course, but at the local restaurants you just pay your bill at a counter and that’s it. We were uncomfortable with this at first and didn’t know what to do, but when one of our shuttle drivers taught us local lingo, told us the history about the various sites we were driving by, stopped at certain spot “that we had to see and take a photo at” and just made us feel SO welcomed, you knew that was someone you gave a gratuity to. We had a bunch of shuttle drivers throughout our transit between Tahiti and Moorea, you could tell this guy (Maui was his name!)was really proud of his island and happy to have us there.

happy couple overlooking the over water bungalows in Moorea

Rudy’s!! Eat there!  It will not disappoint!! Read the reviews and believe every single one you read about the parrotfish.  I read them afterward and was so glad we happened to find it.  We were supposed to go back a second night, but my nap took a little longer than I had expected ;(   
-Food and drinks are expensive on and off the resorts – but omg sooo good 
Belvedere lookout – go here!  People leave locks on the fence, but you can tell they get removed.  We saw a BUNCH in a photo before we went and there were only a few there when we arrived. 

the ocean view from an bungalow balcony

– 1 week is the perfect amount of time to see everything on the island, we saw some things twice!  We even rented a car twice and made it to other restaurants and locations.  I understand why many people spend more time and island-hop between Tahiti, Moorea, and Bora Bora – but that sounds exhausting to us and we decided to spend our 10 year anniversary in Bora Bora instead to check it out 😉 
– Get a black Tahitian pearl 😊 we have a few now! 

WELL, I think that covers it…

enjoying the ocean view from over water balcony

can we go back now, please?!?! 

Thank you SO much for everything, can’t wait to plan the next one! 
Meagan and Cameron 

You provided excellent guidance for us. I appreciated that you really had us think about what was most important to us when we were selecting the right cruise – and not to totally focus on what other people had to say. THANK YOU for helping to make this a memorable trip for our family! It really was a trip of a lifetime!

Clare and Mark (family cruise to Alaska)

The level of service we experienced was out of this world (and we did NOT make it easy on Ann). We weren’t quite sure where we wanted to go, when we would be able to go, or what “vibe” we were going for. After asking us some key questions (what we liked, didn’t like, why, etc.) Ann helped us narrow down our trip details and planned the honeymoon of our dreams. She helped book some of our excursions, answered some emergency questions while abroad and was always available/willing to help. I think it’s safe to say we won’t be using anyone else for future travel planning – Ann is a rockstar!

Carli (Italy and Spain)