Tuamotus Vacations are the ideal way to enjoy a beautiful tropical paradise beach vacation. The Tuamotus Islands dream South Seas snapshot: the 77 atolls – narrow coral rings encircling turquoise lagoons – that make up this stunning archipelago are flung over an immense stretch of indigo-blue ocean.
Life in the atolls is equal parts harsh and paradisiacal: hardly anything grows, so there’s little fruit and vegetables, and the only drinking water is collected from the rain. Yet the silence, starry skies, coral beaches, blue lagoons, idyllic coral islets and languid pace of life captivate nearly everyone who makes it here. Most tourists visit Rangiroa, Tikehau and Fakarava, which have the bulk of the tourist infrastructure, but it’s also possible to explore lesser-known beauties such as Ahe, Mataiva and Makemo.
Anyone who loves the water will adore enjoying Tuamotus Vacations. The vast, pristine marine area offers unparalleled opportunities to encounter the menagerie of marine life. For non divers, fantastic lagoon excursions beckon. The main islands of the Tuamotus Islands are Rangiroa, Fakarava, Manihi, Tikehau, Makemo and Mataiva. For more information on the different islands and beaches of Tuamotus, click here.
The Tuamotus Weather – When to Visit
The Tuamotus get more sunshine than any other archipelago in French Polynesia. The shoulder seasons (April to May and October to November) are the best times to visit. From December to March is the when storms and rain are more likely. Between June and September, the prevailing trade winds produce pleasantly mild weather but rough seas – not ideal for boat excursions. Diving is excellent year-round, but the seas are calmer from October to May. As the archipelago is farther north than the Society group, it tends to be a little hotter than the average 85°F in the summer and the average 80°F in winter that other islands experience. The wet season can be wetter, too. The upside is more sunny days and a constant lagoon temperature of around 78°F.
The Tuamotus Attractions
Île aux Récifs – Rangiroa
Take an hour-long boat ride from Avatoru to Ile aux Recifs, famous for its coral outcrops, weathered and eroded into mysterious underwater shapes. With ample swimming and snorkeling spots, this section of the reef offers excellent views of the area’s abundant marine life. Relax on one of the many small beaches, shaded underneath coconut trees and surrounded by the bright blue waters of the sea.
Lagon Bleu – Rangiroa
This is what many people visualize when imagining a Polynesian paradise: a string of sand islands and coral reefs has formed a natural pool on the edge of the main reef, a lagoon within a lagoon. You can walk knee-deep across a (mostly dead) coral seabed to visit a bird island and laze on incredibly photogenic spits of white-and-pink coral sands. This intimate paradise is reached only on lagoon-excursion boats from Avatoru, about an hour away.
Les Sables Roses – Fakarava
This pink sand beach is in the southeast corner of Rangiroa, reached by a two-hour boat trip. The sands contain eroded coral and foraminiferal deposits (the pulverized red shells of tiny sea creatures) which sparkle in the sunlight. At Les Sables Roses you’ll get complete isolation, deserted beaches, and crystal clear water.
Tiputa – Rangiroa
Very few visitors venture to this charmingly quiet village edging the eastern side of Tiputa Pass. Although it doesn’t have tourist facilities (all accommodation options are on Avatoru), it’s well worth the trip for its wonderfully relaxed atmosphere and to get a sense of atoll life; getting a boat across the Tiputa Pass adds to the whole experience. A track continues east from the the village through coconut plantations until it’s halted by the next shallow channel.
Plage du PK9 – Fakarava
Plage du PK9 is a thin, laid-back stretch of white coral sand backed by palms and lapped by sparkling turquoise waters. It’s equally good for sunning and swimming and there’s excellent snorkeling not far offshore. Bring plenty of water. Beware of falling coconuts.
Marae Papiro – Mataiva
Marae Papiro is a well-kept temple on the edge of a shallow channel, about 14 km from the village. In the center of this temple you can see the stone seat from which, according to legend, the giant Tu guarded the pass against invasion. The shallow channel is good for swimming and snorkeling and there are a few nice coral beaches close by.