Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Anniversary Trip to Tahiti and Moorea 2023 - Pt1 2023/01/05

From January 2023. 

Theresa and I are going to a trip to celebrate our anniversary! We've been to a lot of fun places, like Curacao, Bora Bora, a motu beside Bora Bora, and Hawaii, but there's one that we can't help but compare all our get-away vacations to. It where we went for our 10-year anniversary. The island of Moorea near Tahiti! Now, for our 23rd anniversary, we're headed back! We stopped in Colorado to leave the kids with Gram and Pop Pop.  

Goodbyes are hard sometimes. You'll have a fun time though! 

Dad dropped us off at Denver International Airport. 

Off we go on the tram. 

And we happened to see another couple we know! Theresa's parents' flight just arrived from Michigan! They're going to be hanging out with the kids all week too! Double grandparents! 

Have a fun time! 

Off we go to Los Angeles!

Where we'd walk with all our luggage from the first terminal over to the international terminal. 

Looks like they're already having fun together. 

After a dinner of Panda Express, we made our way over to the gate. 

There's the big plane we're flying on. 

Oof, it's a late night flight, leaving at 11:30pm. 

Boarded and ready to go! 

It was an uneventful overnight flight to the islands of French Polynesia. 

Making our approach. 

And just seeing the sunrise around 6am as we're coming in for a landing. 

Off the plane, walking down the giant set of stairs. 

And loving the welcoming music as you arrive on the island! 

Welcome to Tahiti! 

After grabbing our luggage and getting through customs, we were still a little bleary eyed, but excited to start our adventure! And those jackets didn't last too long. It's warm and humid here. 

We've got to make our way over to Moorea somehow, but first, a taxi ride to a nearby grocery store. 

Being stuck on a smaller island means we're mostly at the mercy of hotel restaurants and their expensive prices, unless we can figure something else out. Theresa had a big list of foods to buy, and we made sure to pack an insulated bag to carry all our treats in the hot sun. 

No large bags allowed inside the store, so I waited with the luggage while Theresa went shopping. 
Here's something we've been looking forward to. Their freshly baked baguettes! Only 60 Francs ($0.54) for a whole loaf! 

All the fruits and veggies. 

And some meats and cheeses. I think we can put together a few good meals with all the things we're finding. 

From the grocery store, it was about a mile walk along Namuu Bay to our next stop.

Some of the Christmas decorations haven't come down yet. I love tree!

It was a warm walk with all our luggage and groceries for the week, but we've been sitting for hours. Some exercise will be good for us. 

To get to the island of Moorea, we'll be taking a ferry. T getting our tickets. 

And we'll enjoy a tasty crepe while we wait! 

The weather for the week we're here. Pleasant temperatures (considering it's January), but storms daily. We'll see how that goes. 

Here's our ferry. 

Ready to go with our luggage and food! Watch out for any seagulls! 

Goodbye Tahiti. 

Next stop, Moorea. 

Grabbing a forward facing seat for our bumpy journey across the water. 

T doesn't love ferries. Her motion sickness gets to her. 
Instead of using the local bus service like last time (lots of fun getting all the luggage plus 2 folding bikes into a crowded bus), we hopped in a waiting taxi to get to our hotel. 

Being a small island, there's not too many roads. Just the main one that encircles the entire island, plus a few offshoots to go slightly inland. 

Ha! I remember this snack shack! T and I road our bikes here a few times to get grilled cheese sandwiches and fries on our last trip. 

But here we are! Our home for the next week. The Hilton Moorea Lagoon Resort!

Just a little construction at the entrance while they build a new place to store luggage, but it's looking beautiful. 

Another Christmas tree in their lobby. 

Always love how you're welcomed on these tropical islands. A beautiful lei and a refreshing fruit juice. 
Since it's still pretty early, being only 11am, our room isn't quite ready yet. We're welcome to leave our luggage and hang out anywhere we'd like. 

Either by the pool. 

Or the gorgeous turquoise water. 


And since we've got cold groceries, we made sure to fill our cooler bags with ice. 

We opted to find a place in the shade. 

And get a little rest after that red-eye flight and early morning. 

At 1pm (still an hour before normal check-in) our room was ready. 
Not exactly what we were hoping for, but things will get better. 

The whole resort is made up of multiple over-water bungalows, plus a smattering of rooms on the land. 

Ours happens to be a room with a wall that is shared by a neighbor, right beside the road. Not exactly ideal. 

But the inside of the room looks nice. 

We have our own private pool. 

And a large bathroom. 

A mini-fridge that comes stocked each day with water, sodas, juices, and beers. Every day they will replace whatever you drink, which is great! 

But I'm really looking forward to this bread and French butter! 

Exploring the resort, we headed to the walkway that would take us out over the ocean. 


And fortunately, there are plenty of open chairs and umbrellas on the beach for those who aren't lucky enough to have a place over the water. 

We'd spend the rest of our day relaxing here. 

Ah, an island kitty. 

One great benefit to Theresa's hotel status is that we get a free breakfast included with our room. Normally just the cold breakfast, we can pay $10 to upgrade to the hot breakfast. We've had some really good breakfasts at resort hotels, and this is one of the best. 

Omelet stations, plus miso soup and lots of toppings. 

A large bread selection. 

Including banana cake (good). 

And coconut bread (needed more coconut flavor). 

Along with lots of hot dishes. 

My first two plates.. 

Since it's all-you-can-eat, breakfast was our main meal of the day. 

We've got to get some time over the water, right? 

Oh my. All the birds. Alli, this one is for you.

At the end of the pier were a few chairs to relax in. 

Can't get tired of this view. 
And while it's nice, that sun is intense! 

Back to the land to hang out in the shade. 

One of the reasons we don't love the rooms on the land are these guys. Wild chickens roam around everywhere, and when it's morning, they let everyone know! Good luck sleeping in! The other reason being that since there's only 1 road around the island, all the cars are going by outside all the time. 

Yet another island cat coming over to say hi. 

Hello there. 

No extra bread today. Sorry. 

That evening after the sun went down, we'd head back to the room and sit on the porch, enjoying the pool. 

The next day, time to head over to breakfast. 

Lots of fresh fruits and veggies, plus cold cuts and cheese. 

Gotta say, I've not used to seeing cottage cheese without some type of curd in it. Still tasted like cottage cheese, just a different texture than I'm used to. 

Love all the foods that had that weren't typical breakfast foods. 
Those hash browns somehow stayed crispy for a long time after being cooked. Some kind of island magic. 

Mmm, fresh donuts. 

Eh, no thank you. 

I don't think so. 

But I loaded up on all the other good stuff. I was always stuffed coming away from breakfast. 

Time to head to the beach and hang out in the shade! 

Despite the sunblock and being in the shade yesterday, I still got a little toasty. 

Ah. What could be better. 

1 comment:

  1. BEAUTIFUL views...the clear turquoise water, sunshine (bit warm at times :-) ), waving palm trees, sandy beach....what more can you ask for when serene, relaxation is the goal? Couple of favorite photos: 1) In the taxi ride to the hotel really liked that view of "the palm tree in the foreground w/ the water and small mountains in the background" and 2) The panoramic view capturing the bungalows & walkways over the water while Theresa is peering down in the clear water from the left. Even during your plane's arrival you were greeted w/ a beautiful sunrise welcoming you to a taste of paradise (also like how the live music sets a festive welcome to Tahiti) Breakfast as a main meal is wise because it allows you to work off all those delicious calories throughout the day :-)...that bread station would drive me crazy (what is it about flavored breads that taste so good?)...lots of other delicious food (all the bacon you can eat!) to make up for the presence of the seafood :-) Having your own private pool and porch to retreat and relax is such a great amenity. Can see Moorea casting its spell on you and Theresa again (belated 23rd anniversary and #24 for this year!...time flies) P.S. At least Alli & Ian got double grandparents time and love! EOM