Diving & Snorkelling
Huahine has two scuba centres offering magnificent dives for all experience levels. Just offshore from Fare, the Avapeihi Pass is the most sought-after site, with dense fish action at all times. Snorkelling is no less impressive. On the east coast, near the visitor car park at the now defunct Sofitel, you’ll find Le Jardin de Corail, which offers superb snorkelling among coral pinnacles and rich marine life only a few metres offshore. Motu Topati, at the entrance to Maroe Bay, and Motu Vaiorea, at the entrance to Bourayne Bay, are magnificent sites for snorkelling that are accessible by boat.
The best way to experience Huahine's picture-perfect azure lagoon and brooding green sillhouette is to get out on the water and visit the uninhabited motu – the beaches are isolated and fantastic.
Various lagoon tours are offered on Huahine, with stops for snorkelling, swimming, fish or shark feeding, a pearl-farm visit and a motu picnic. Departures are at around 9am or 10am, returning towards 4pm. A minimum number of participants is required, so book ahead.
Huahine provides opportunities to dip a paddle around the quiet lagoon. You can steer to Hana Iti Beach, Motu Araara or any other motu, but bear in mind that many of the motu belong to local families: don’t treat the land as yours to explore without permission. Most places to stay either hire out or offer free sea kayaks for guests’ use.
Huahine’s Top Surf Spots
Huahine has some of the best and most consistent surf in French Polynesia, with left and right reef breaks best tackled by experienced surfers. Local surfers can be very possessive, however, so be sure to be courteous in the waves, smile and say ‘hi’, don’t show up in a big group and, especially, don’t bring a camera. If you’re cool and friendly, that’s how you’ll be treated too.
The following spots have good surf all year round:
Fare Reef break Northwest of Huahine Nui. The left here attracts the big names of world surfing. The right is also pretty good. Best with a southwest swell.
Fitii Reef break Northwest of Huahine Nui. Best when a southwest swell is running.
Parea Reef break South of Huahine Iti. Beautiful waves as long as the trade winds aren’t blowing.
There are no clearly marked trails on Huahine and the occasional paths in the interior grow over quickly if they’re not maintained (which is usually the case), so DIY hikes are limited. The marae walk at Maeva is the most interesting option (although we suggest hiring a guide who can explain the cultural significance of the archaeological sites). Other walks require a guide.