The best source of up-to-date information in advance is Tahiti Tourisme, B.P. 65, 98713 Papeete, French Polynesia (tel. 50.57.00; fax 43.66.19; www.tahiti-tourisme.com).
You can also contact Tahiti Tourisme's overseas offices or representatives:
- United States: 300 N. Continental Blvd., Ste. 160, El Segundo, CA 90245 (tel. 310/414-8484; fax 310/414-8490; www.tahiti-tourisme.com); and 122 E. 42nd St., Ste. 608, New York, NY 10168 (tel. 212/599-8484).
- Australia: Paramour Productions, 362 Riley St., Surry Hills, NSW 2010 (tel. 1300 655 563 toll-free in Australia, or 02/9281-6020; fax 02/9211-6589; www.tahiti-tourisme.com.au)
- New Zealand: 200 W. Victoria St., Ste. 2A (P.O. Box 106192), Auckland (tel. 09/368-5262; fax 09/368-5263; www.tahiti-tourisme.co.nz)
- United Kingdom: BGB & Associates, 7 Westminster Palace Gardens, Artillery Row, London SW1P 1RL (tel. 20/7233-2300; fax 20/7233-2301; www.tahiti-tourisme.co.uk)
- France: 28 bd. Saint Germain, 75005 Paris (tel. 01/55426434; fax 01/55426120; www.tahiti-tourisme.fr)
- Germany: Travel Marketing Romberg, Swartzbachstrasse, 32 40822, Mettman bei Dusseldorf (tel. 2104/286672; fax 2104/912673; www.tahititourisme.de)
- Italy: Aigo, Piazza Castello, 3 20 124 Milano (tel. 02/66-980317; fax 02/66-92648; www.tahiti-tourisme.it)
- Chile: Officina de turismo de Tahiti y sus islas, av. 11 de Septiembre 2214, Of. 116, Casila 16057, Santiago 9 (tel. 251-2826; fax 233-1787; www.tahiti-tourisme.cl)
- Japan: Tahiti Tourist Promotion Board, Tokyo City Air Terminal 2F 42-1, Nihonbashi-Hakozakicho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo 103-0015 (tel. 3/3639-0468; fax 3/3665-0581; www.tahiti-tourisme.jp)
Once you're in Papeete, you can get maps, brochures, and other information at the Tahiti Tourisme's Fare Manihini visitor bureau (tel. 50.57.12; www.tahiti-manava.pf), located in the cruise-ship welcome center on the waterfront, on boulevard Pomare at rue Paul Gauguin.
Most major islands have tourism committees, but they run information offices only on Moorea, Huahine, Raiatea, Bora Bora, Nuku Hiva, and Hiva Oa.
Be sure to pick up the Tahiti Beach Press, a free weekly English-language newspaper that lists special events and current activities. Copies are available in most hotel lobbies.
Tahiti Tourisme distributes free maps of each island. Each weekly edition of the free Tahiti Beach Press carries artistic maps of the island and Papeete. Librairie Vaima, a large bookstore in Papeete's Vaima Centre, sells several cartes touristiques.
The most detailed map is "Tahiti: Archipel de la Société," published by the Institut Géographique National. Although it doesn't include every new road on Tahiti, it shows all the Society Islands in detail, including topographic features. It's available online from Maptown Ltd. (www.maptown.com).
The U.S. Department of State maintains a Travel Advisory (tel. 202/647-5225) to keep you abreast of political or other problems throughout the world. It posts travel warnings and other timely information on its website, www.travel.state.gov.
The Tahiti-based Agence Tahitienne de Presse (www.tahitipresse.pf) is the best source for breaking local news as well as events and weather. Click on the "English version" link.
The East-West Center at the University of Hawaii gathers news from French Polynesia and other islands on its Pacific Islands Report website, http://pidp.eastwestcenter.org/pireport. It includes links to newspapers, news services, and universities.
Other useful websites include:
- www.airtahitimagazine.com, with articles from Air Tahiti's in-flight magazine.
- www.diving-tahiti.com, for general information and links to dive operators in all of the islands.
- www.meteo.pf, the official site of Météo France, the local weather service.
- www.polynesianislands.com, with coverage of all the South Pacific islands.
- www.tahitiguide.com is one of the most comprehensive commercial sites and has a booking engine for most hotels and many pensions.
- www.tahiti-nui.com, where you can see what the weather is doing in Papeete and on Bora Bora through Tahiti Nui Travel's live webcams.
- www.tahitisun.com, with links to several other sites that offer a host of information about each island.
Getting Hitched in the Islands
The islands are marvelous places for a honeymoon. Getting married in French Polynesia, however, is another matter, due to a required 30-day residency. That is, you have to stay here at least a month before you can get a marriage license. On the other hand, most resorts have romantic wedding packages including traditional ceremonies, often right on the beach, so many couples get legally hitched at home, and then go through it again here. Others come here to reaffirm their vows.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.