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Tikehau or Fakarava?

Scottdale...
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Tikehau or Fakarava?

Planning a trip to FP July/August, 2019. Preliminary itinerary: 10 nights Moorea, 10 nights Bora Bora, 4 nights in Tikehau or Fakarava and 1 night in Papeete prior to our flight back to LAX.

We like to snorkel, kayak, SUP and explore/hang-out at secluded, sandy beaches. We are not divers. Based on our preferences, which Tuamotus atoll would you recommend, Tikehau or Fakarava?

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Moorea
Moorea
Society Islands, French Polynesia
Bora Bora
Bora Bora
Society Islands, French Polynesia
Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Papeete
Papeete
Tahiti, French Polynesia
11 replies to this topic
santa barbara,CA
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for French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Tahiti
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1. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Hi hi,

I would choose Tikehau at the Pearl resort for snorkeling right off the beach and/or overwater bungalows. Pink sandy beaches as far as the eye can see & a four star experience. Kayaking to the surrounding motus is tons of fun & an excursion to Bird Island is amazing. Both islands offer drift snorkeling in the passes on a boat excursion.

Be aware that both Tikehau and Fakarava have no real tourism infrastructure. Just unspoiled beauty & quiet sunsets.

sunny regards,

shully

Edited: 06 August 2018, 21:45
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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Scottdale...
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115 posts
3 reviews
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2. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Thanks shully! Is the Pearl Resort the primary reason for choosing Tikehau, or are the beaches and snorkeling opportunities superior to what you would find in Fakarava?

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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Trieste, Italy
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81 reviews
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3. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Given your interests, here's another vote for Tikehau. I used to take the kayak of my pension in the morning and just paddle away: there are PLENTY of white or pink sand unhabitated motus which were absolutely gorgeous. Idillyc experience as I was the only person around about 99% of the time. In my experience Tikehau felt much less touristic than any other island/atoll I visited, Maupiti included.

As for beaches, for the reasons stated above, I'd prefer Tikehau; for the snorkeling there's no comparison, Fakarava IMO is much better: I did both snorkeling and diving in Fakarava and I was stunned by the marine life in Fakarava, Tikehau was good but nothing to brag about.

Edited: 07 August 2018, 21:17
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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Maupiti Island
Maupiti Island
Society Islands, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Sacramento...
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4 reviews
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4. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

I've stayed at Ninamu and Tikehau Pearl and loved them both. They both have great snorkeling from the beach, but there's definitely more fish swimming under the bungalows at the Pearl. I felt like I was in an aquarium. We also took the kayaks to several motus from both resorts, but the Pearl had more motus to visit.

I'm heading to Fakarava in September, but I know the accommodations there are more like bed and breakfasts vs hotels.

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Tikehau Ninamu Resort
Tikehau Ninamu Resort
249 Reviews
Tikehau, French Polynesia
Tikehau Pearl Beach Resort
Tikehau Pearl Beach...
1,043 Reviews
Tikehau, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Scottdale...
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3 reviews
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5. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Thanks Sputnikboy. I was leaning towards Tikehau, but my no. 1 priority is snorkeling. If Fakarava is that much better, I may need to rethink my position.

What locations in Fakarava offer the best snorkeling, and where did you stay when you visited?

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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Scottdale...
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6. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Thanks Stephanie! I appreciate your feedback. It appears the Pearl is the preferred lodging location in Tikehau for fish viewing and motus access. Btw, where are you staying in Fakarava this Sept.?

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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Sacramento...
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212 posts
4 reviews
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7. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

We're jumping on a catamaran and sailing around Fakarava in September. I also looked at staying at Raimiti.

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Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Raimiti
Raimiti
236 Reviews
Fakarava, French Polynesia
Scottdale...
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3 reviews
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8. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Stephanie, a catamaran sail sounds amazing! Surprisingly, I am also looking at Raimiti should we decide to visit Fakarava. Being "off the grid" sounds intriguing and exciting. The majority of the reviews I've read have been positive, kind of an "end of the world" experience. Should you decide to stay there, I'd love to get your feedback when you return. Have a great trip!

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Raimiti
Raimiti
236 Reviews
Fakarava, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Trieste, Italy
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9. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

I stayed at Veke Veke village, a simple pension with a beautiful location (lagoon side) on a nice beach and with breathtaking sunsets. Close to the pension there are some rocks where 3-4 lemon sharks sleep at night. Snorkeling outside the pension isn't that special but what you can find near the two passes (Garuae on the north and especially Tumakohua in the south) is fantastic. I took an excursion to Tetamanu (south Fakarava) which included snorkeling and it was excellent. For a scuba diver usually snorkeling is underwhelming, but in Tetamanu it wasn't: schools of goatfish, bannerfish, many types of butterflyfish, triggerfish, some napoleon wrasse and plenty of sharks, black tip reef sharks very close and grey reef on the bottom of the pass; coral was in okay condition too (compared to Rangiroa, where it was in bad shape).

I suggest you to check some videos of Fakarava on youtube.

But, now that I think about it, before a dive in Tikehau pass, I got a chance to swim (snorkeling) with mantas! So yeah, you can't go wrong with either of them.

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Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Rangiroa
Rangiroa
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Scottdale...
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10. Re: Tikehau or Fakarava?

Thanks again Sputnikboy! As a follow-up, how does the coral quality in Tikehau compare with Fakarava? Also, where did you stay in Tikehau?

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Tikehau
Tikehau
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
Fakarava
Fakarava
Tuamotu Archipelago, French Polynesia
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