When is the best time to visit French Polynesia?
Coconut tree-fringed beaches, gorgeous blue skies, and even bluer lagoons make the islands of French Polynesia seem like something out of a picture postcard. Find out the best time to visit French Polynesia because a vacation to these breathtakingly beautiful islands is everything you ever dreamed of on a beach holiday.
The months of July and August present ideal travel conditions and are also the busiest time of the year. But the months of May, June, September, and October provide visitors a winning combination of great weather along with lesser crowds.
Even though December is smack in the middle of the rainy season, it is a busy month as travelers arrive for the Christmas holidays and to ring in the New Year.
Despite this being one of the rainiest periods of the year, the first half of the month is busy with tourists visiting the islands during the European winter break.
- Shake a leg at a traditional Tahitian dance show
- Find out how the Tahitian pearl is cultivated at one of the many pearl farms and gift yourself a little trinket
Weather conditions are very similar to how they were in January though rainfall levels decrease a little. Day time highs are around 83°F, and nighttime lows are in the low 70s.
- Savor the freshest seafood delicacies and traditional Polynesia cuisine
- Breathe in some sea breeze and work on that tan, with a tropical drink in hand
Rainfall levels continue to fall to almost half of the previous month. With day time temperatures around 84°F, it is the warmest month of the year. With the end of the rainy season around the corner, humidity levels also become manageable.
- Discover Tahiti’s beautiful black sand beaches
- An underwater paradise awaits at the Bora Bora lagoon
Rainfall levels are similar to those in March, but the number of rainy days starts to lessen. Average day time temperatures are steady at around 83°F.
- Watch a spectacular display of traditional Polynesian dance at the Ori Tahiti Festival
- Feed friendly stingrays at Bora Bora
The month marks the transition from wet to dry weather. Rainfall levels drop but don’t put away that umbrella just yet. It is a good time to visit the islands of French Polynesia without the crowds.
- Explore the beautiful Papenoo Valley and discover its stunning waterfalls
- Laze on secluded beaches and swim with schools of colorful fishes as you take a boat ride to the Tuamotu Atolls
With clear azure skies, favorable sea conditions, and little rain, June is one of the best times to visit French Polynesia. What makes it even better is that the holiday crowds are yet to arrive.
- Experience the thrill of swimming with manta rays
- Hike Mount Aorai in Tahiti, which is lush green after the monsoons
July is the best time to visit French Polynesia as the weather is great but it is also the peak tourist season. Day time temperatures are just short of the 80-degree mark while nighttime lows are around 66°F. Trade winds can make evenings chilly, so pack a light jacket.
- Witness the best of Tahitian culture with canoe races, traditional dance, and sports competitions at the Heiva/ Tahiti Festival
- Sailing enthusiasts descend upon Tahiti and Moorea for the Tahiti Moorea Sailing Rendez-Vous
It’s the driest and coldest month of the year. Day time highs are in the 70s while nighttime temperatures drop to the mid-60s. The vacation crowds continue to throng the beaches of French Polynesia.
- Take in a sublime sunset or two at Matira Point in Bora Bora
- Watch pro surfers ride some of the biggest waves at the Billabong Pro Teahupoo in Tahiti
It’s quieter compared to previous months, but warm temperatures and excellent sea conditions make September one of the best times to visit French Polynesia.
- It’s birthing time for humpback whales. Spot pods of humpback whales and their calves as they swim in the waters near the islands of French Polynesia.
- For an insight into the island’s culture, visit Marae Taputapuatea, a traditional Polynesian temple complex
Humidity levels start increasing as do rainfall levels. However, you will still find plenty of sunny days making October a good month to travel to French Polynesia. The month marks the transition from the dry to the wet season.
- Trek, ride or drive to Belvedere Lookout in Moorea for sweeping views of the island
- Hire a motorbike or cycle for an island tour
It’s the beginning of the monsoon season. Rainfall levels are double of the previous month, and the humidity is noticeably higher. If you are visiting the region, head to the northernmost Marquesas islands that experience considerably less rain.
- Discover secret bays and beaches at the Marquesas Archipelago.
- Watch the skies over the islands put on a brilliant color show as you head out on a relaxing sunset cruise
The month sees the most amount of rain. Showers are typically short bursts followed by clear blue skies. Daytime temperatures are in the low 80s. The islands get crowded during the latter part of the month owing to Christmas break.
- Relax and rejuvenate in one of many overwater bungalows that dot the island’s beaches
- Traverse the rugged interiors of Moorea on an ATV tour
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Best Time to Visit by Season
Located in the South Pacific Ocean, the archipelago of French Polynesia experiences a fairly predictable tropical weather system.
The dry or winter season runs from May to October. During this period, the islands experience perfect beach weather – little to no rainfall, clear, blue skies, pleasant temperatures, and cool nights. Day time averages range from the low to mid-80s while nighttime lows hover around 70°F. Not surprisingly, this is the peak tourist season. During the period from May-June, the islands are lush green, having just come out of the monsoon season.
The months of July and August, in particular, see a high volume of tourists visiting the islands during summer break. With sea temperatures hovering between 77°F – 81°F and clear water conditions, it’s the perfect time to go snorkeling or scuba diving. The months of September and October are perfect for whale watching.
The months from November to April are the monsoon or summer season in the archipelago. Expect wet days, higher temperatures, and humidity levels. Most times, rain showers are in the form of short bursts that clear out to reveal blue skies and plenty of sunshine in the afternoon. There is a chance of hurricanes from December to April though it is not very common. Daytime temperatures are usually in the mid-80s, and the seas warm up to a very enjoyable 82°F. It is a quieter time of the year except for the period from mid-December to mid-Jan when tourists arrive for winter break.
An exception to this weather pattern is the Marquesa Islands, which lies in the northernmost part of the archipelago. These islands see warm temperatures year-round and experience less rainfall than the other islands.
What to Pack for French Polynesia
Swimsuits, stylish cover-ups or sarongs, sunscreen lotion, sunhats, and sunglasses are a must when visiting French Polynesia, a destination that boasts of the most picturesque beaches in the world. With warm temperatures throughout the year, it’s best to pack cotton or linen tops, shorts, rompers, skirts, and dresses. For men, we recommend taking a few sets of half sleeve shirts or T-shirts and shorts. Pack a pair of comfortable, waterproof sandals – they work well on the beach, off it, and aboard a boat.
If you are planning on trekking or exploring the region’s impressive waterfalls, we recommend you get lightweight pants and a good pair of hiking shoes. Also pack a backpack with some insect repellant, water bottle, and towel when you set out to explore the island’s lush interiors.
Whether you are traveling during the rainy season or not, it is advisable to pack good quality rain gear. You never know when an odd shower might catch you off guard.
Talk to our travel experts and find the best times to visit French Polynesia for your perfect beach vacation. Get in touch with us for a tailor-made itinerary to the islands of Tahiti, Bora Bora, and Moorea.
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