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French Polynesia

A collection of volcanic atolls strewn about the South Pacific, French Polynesia stretches far beyond the popular Society Islands of Tahiti, Bora Bora and Moorea. Most people associate French Polynesia with romance and honeymoons and, while this is true, the delights of these islands extend past lounging on pristine beaches or cozying up in an over-water bungalow. Adventurous and active travelers can enjoy world-class diving and snorkeling to catch a glimpse of the abundant marine life that populates the surrounding turquoise waters. Swimming with dolphins, feeding sharks, kayaking and wind surfing are other favorite aquatic pursuits; on land, four-wheel safaris explore the islands' flora and fauna and lead travelers to less accessible corners where hiking, caving, Polynesian history and culture, and mountain biking can all be enjoyed.

Don't let us mislead you though! French Polynesia remains one of the premier destinations for couples seeking a romantic, relaxing retreat, honeymoon or otherwise. Seclusion is key here and few things offer more private intimacy than an over-water bungalow where breakfast is delivered each morning via outrigger canoe. Island flora lends itself to wonderfully aromatic spa treatments and all of our preferred resorts offer a wide selection of "couples" spa services. And to commemorate your special occasion, there is no better memento than Tahitian black pearls, symbol of the islands and commonly sold in the colorful local markets.

With a total land mass only slightly larger than Rhode Island but splashed across an area as large as Western Europe, island hopping can be a challenge. For travelers who wish to explore beyond the Society Islands to the Tuamotu Atolls (Tahiti's Strand of Pearls) or the Marquesas (the Mystery Islands), cruising is a perfect option. Unpack only once and experience the beauty and diversity of a variety of islands aboard either the 332-guest Paul Gauguin or the elegant vessels of Nomade Yachting Bora Bora, the 40-guest twin mega yachts Tu Moana and Ti'a Moana.

This best time to visit this idyllic destination is June through October, though many people travel over Christmas and the summer months as well. Air Tahiti Nui flies direct to Papeete from Los Angeles and Frontiers' experienced air department is able to offer special discounted rates in First Class, Business and Economy on a tour basis.

For other destinations in this area: