French Polynesia – Sharks, Sharks And More Sharks
Overview of diving in French Polynesia
One of the few remaining untouched paradises, diving in French Polynesia is simply breath taking, with huge aggregations of sharks, playful dolphins, elegant whales and graceful manta rays. The islands that comprise French Polynesia are spread out as far as Europe distance wise, meaning that after landing on Tahiti, internal flights are required to get to the best atolls for diving. These include Rangiroa and Fakarava, the later being a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve with populations of reef sharks.
Top Dive Sites / Locations
Fakarava north and south passes
Closer to Tahiti, the island of Moorea is home to lemon sharks and beautiful reefs, while some beaches have resident stingray populations which are attracted there by the locals which feed them. Tahiti itself has some impressive reef dives, along with several interesting wrecks.
Our dive trips to French Polynesia
We have been lucky enough to visit French Polynesia twice, first in January 2018 and then again in April 2018. On our first trip we spent a week on the atoll of Fakarava. The south and north pass dive sites at Fakarava are a must for any diver and rank among the best dive sites we have been to. During a single dive you can expect to see hundreds of reef sharks. There is also the chance to see big pelagic species such as hammerhead sharks, whale sharks and manta rays.
We then spent a week on Tahiti. Unfortunately the weather was terrible, and we only got to dive on a couple of days. We did a couple of scuba dives on the local reefs, and also managed to spend a morning freediving some small wrecks.
Finally in April we managed to return to French Polyneisa through work. This time we headed over to the island of Moorea just off Tahiti. The diving here is also excellent, and we spotted several lemon sharks on our dives. We also found a beach with super friendly stingrays, which swim right up to you demanding food.
You can read more about the dive sites we visited in the posts below.
Fakarava is a remote atoll with only a small local population. The lack of human influence has partly resulted in a huge population of resident reef sharks resulting in spectacular diving.
A short ferry journey from Tahiti, Moorea is a popular tourist destination. The northern coast has a variety of dive centers, with some nice reef dives located on the outer barrier reef. Lemon sharks can often be seen cruising through the reefs.
Hosting the capital of French Polynesia, Pape’ete, Tahiti is the main international gateway to French Polynesia. It can either be used as a stop over on to a remote atoll, or there is some great diving on the north west coast.