Everything about a trip to The Islands of Tahiti will take your breath away. Better yet, the air you breathe in will restore and keep you grounded in your body as you marvel at the exquisite natural surroundings, thanks to the stunning landscape. The negative ions abundant in ocean surf and mountainous terrain make the mere act of simply breathing here a transformative practice, increasing the mood-boosting chemical serotonin, which helps alleviate depression, decrease stress levels, and amp up daytime energy. That last part will come in especially handy, as there’s so much to see and do here. (But do take time to relax and luxuriate in nature during your trip!)
Whether you’re embarking on epic air adventures by helicopter or seaplane, hiking up mountaintops, or simply dining alfresco or enjoying an outdoor massage, there are countless opportunities to inhale the fresh air from dawn to evening—when the skies alight for epic star gazing. Here are some ways to help you take in the special mana, or life force/spirit, of The Islands of Tahiti.
Coral reefs produce most of the Earth’s oxygen and absorb nearly a third of the carbon dioxide generated from burning fossil fuels, so protecting the reefs, of which there are many in The Islands of Tahiti, is of utmost important to the air we breathe. Consider staying at a property that takes sustainability seriously—this won’t be a problem in this destination, where the natural environment is deeply respected and revered, at resorts large and small. The iconic St. Regis Bora Bora kicked off Earth Day this year by launching a new sustainability initiative called Natura Ora, Tahitian for “Living Nature,” to protect the environment, support local communities, preserve French Polynesian culture, and practice more responsible consumption. Partake in their “coral planting” program to do your part to protect biodiversity. You can even follow the evolution of the coral you plant year after year.
Parasailing in paradise
Take in the turquoise waters from a completely different angle when you embark on a parasailing adventure on Moorea. The folks at Moorea Parasailing, run by local Polynesians, will guide your journey, as you glide through the air some 500 feet up, marveling at the beauty of mother nature’s show: the contrasting colors of the lagoon and ocean below, and the vast mountainous terrain stretching out ahead of you.
Scenic flights by helicopter, seaplane, and more
Whether you opt for a helicopter tour, such as one from Tahiti Nui Helicopters, or island-hop via seaplane (Tahiti Air Charter’s eight-seat Cessna 208 Caravan flies out of Papeete), there are multiple ways to get an aerial view of the magnificent islands and turquoise waters. For something unexpected, how about a flying inflatable boat to take you around? Mitireva Fly departs from Papara on Tahiti.
The ultimate skydiving
For the adventurous traveler, you couldn’t ask for a more picturesque location to skydive than The Islands of Tahiti with its infinite shades of blues and greens. Book a trip with Tahiti Parachutisme – Skydive Tahiti, and freefall over Tahiti, Bora Bora, or Moorea. Whichever you pick, whether flying solo or tandem with a loved one, it’s an invigorating experience led by professional, licensed guides.
Mountain air hikes
For those who prefer their feet on the ground, The Islands of Tahiti are rife with scenic hiking trails to magnificent waterfalls and up stunning mountainous terrain, where the fresh air of the forests will fill your lungs with mana. There are hikes for all levels on most of the islands to explore. For the advanced hiker, the lush, well-marked trail up Mount Aorai (the third-highest peak in Tahiti, rising 2,066 meters) is a must. It winds along a narrow ridge, so a guide is recommended for safety reasons. When you reach the top, passing fascinating local flora along the way, the panoramic views from the summit are some of the best in the world. Take some deep inhales and exhales, and soak in the majesty.