We all think that we know everything about Bora Bora based on the things we’ve read or heard. However, that’s barely scratching the surface of this marvelous island. There are so many things that make it unique and special in comparison to the other places in the world. Interested to find out which they are? Follow me as I’ll show you all compelling Bora Bora facts.
Vital Fast Facts About Bora Bora
Bora Bora is a part of the Society Islands of French Polynesia. Located in the Pacific Ocean it has become one of the most famous tourist destinations and a place everyone dream of visiting. In fact, there are a lot of things that contribute to that reputation, so let’s observe this overview of the basic facts about the island:
- Bora Bora covers an area of 29.3 km2
- It’s a part of the Leeward Group of islands
- It’s halfway between Australia and the U.S.
- It lies 230 km northwest of Papeete – the capital city of Tahiti
- In the center of it, there are remains of an extinct volcano separated in two peaks – Mount Pahia and Mount Otemanu
- Its highest point is Mount Otemanu at 727 meters
- It is surrounded by a coral reef and a wonderful lagoon
- The population is permanent since 2008 and consists of 8.880 residents
- It is famous for the numerous luxurious resorts
- Vaitape is the major settlement, located on the western side of the main island
- The island is completely pest free without any poisonous snakes or insects in sight
- It’s one of the most secluded islands on Earth
- Bora Bora has small islets around it such as Motu Ahuna, Motu Tapu, Motu Mute, Motu Tafari, Toopuaiti and several more.
- It’s well-known for the dark pearls that are a special gift to bring home as a reminder of the awesome holiday.
Other than all that, Bora Bora has a tremendous history since the times it was inhabited by warriors up to now when it serves as the most attractive tropical destination. Most of the couples dream about spending their honeymoon in the bungalows floating above the blue waters. Others can’t wait to experience the species of underwater animals and drink a cocktail on the mesmerizing beaches. In any case, Bora bora is a paradise for everyone. And here’s how to get to it from anywhere in the world.
Bora Bora Island History Facts
The island is full of interesting historical moments. They give an in-depth look at what Bora Bora truly is. Also, it helps you to get to know the culture and tradition of the place better. Here are the top history facts so that you can explore a different side of the loving island.
Volcanic eruption – Over 4 million years ago the island was formed by a volcanic eruption. For a time, it was uninhabited and desolate, until people from the Tongan island came. They are believed to be the first people to lie foot on the island after the volcanic eruption. At that time, the island was known as Vava’u.
Pora Pora – As in the Tahitian language the letter ‘B’ doesn’t exist, the island was originally called Pora Pora. When translated, it means ‘the first born’ referring to the grave importance of the island or the son of King Hiro of Raiatea, who ruled it. Later on, when English settlers arrived, they misheard the name as ‘Bora Bora’. Since then the name remained as we know it today.
Captain James Cook – Bora Bora was discovered by Captain James Cook in 1769. That was the first time the island was actually recognized as an existing one. Cook was on a mission in the area as a British explorer when he came upon the island. That was a beginning of the missionaries, which were established there in 1820. Their main purpose was to convert Polynesians into Christianity. You can see that the importance of the island only grew with the years. Find out more about the captain here.
World War II – Believe it or not, Bora Bora was an American supply base during World War II in 1940’s. The island was a perfect sanctuary for more than 6.000 US soldiers. Having said that, the islet Motu Mute was the main gateway for supplies to and from the island, making it a key location. For protection, 8 cannons were situated on different sides of the island. Out of them all, only one remains today as a reminder of the battle. Explore the role of Bora Bora in World War II further with Viator.
Cool Bora Bora Fun Facts
Now let’s jump to the cool and exciting side of the island. I offer you some of the most interesting and exciting facts you might or might not have heard of before.
Romantic island – Most people call Bora Bora a romantic island. That’s mainly because it’s a perfect place for couples and honeymooners to crown their love. Starting from the bungalows, private beaches up to the Motus and the lagoon, it’s the kingdom of love. Moreover, there’s Motu Iti just 19 kilometers north. The coral reef formation that resembles a heart is another reason that justifies the ‘romantic island’ title. After this, you’re surely eager to surprise your loved one with a romantic tour, so here are some.
The meaning of flowers – In Bora Bora, everything has a meaning. That includes flowers, too. Most importantly, the flowers placed on women’s ears. Having said that, a flower on the woman’s left ear indicates that she’s taken and has someone she loves in her life. Whereas, a flower on the right ear is a green light for the men to approach her knowing that she’s single and ready to mingle. The beaches are full of young and beautiful people, so this a nice way to flirt a little and have some fun both with the natives and the tourists.
Tattoos – It’s a bit strange, but tattooing has a sacred meaning in Bora Bora. The locals believe that it derives from the two sons of Ta’aroa – the God of creation. The drawings on your skin are also observed as a sign of beauty. Despite that, in the past, they were a way to show your position in society. So, cool, right? Definitely, get a tattoo once you visit the island. For more information visit this site.
Bora Bora in movies – Among other things, this island seems to be an exciting location for shooting movies. To prove that, we have the romantic movie Couples Retreat. It was filmed at St. Regis Resort in 2009. Through the scenes on the island, the viewers get to see the beauty from their TVs, so it’s a win-win situation. Among other movies that have scenes shot in Bora Bora are XXX, Island Fever, Hurricane, Sky Pirates and even the reality show “Keeping Up With The Kardashians”.
Bora Bora’s youngins – Another cool information among the Bora Bora facts, lies in the youngins. They are young people under the age of 20. And half of Bora Bora’s population are youngins. I know it sounds incredible, but that’s the truth. What’s awesome is that these young people fill the beaches during the day and during the night organize exciting parties. That means that you’ll have a blast on the island.
Bora Bora Tourism Facts
If you’re convinced to spend your holiday on this magnificent island, then the following Bora Bora facts are just for you. They’re connected to tourism and show the unforgettable things Bora Bora has to offer to all the visitors.
The most beautiful beaches – The first on the ‘tourism Bora Bora facts’ list are the beaches. The island has one of the most amazing beaches in the whole world. According to CNN’s piece on the World’s 100 best beaches, Bora Bora’s Matira Beach found its place among the top 10. It was described as too perfect to be believable and that’s everything you need to convince yourself of the beauty of this place.
No public transit – As a tourist you must be aware that Bora Bora doesn’t have any public transit. It’s one more on the list of Bora Bora facts connected to tourism because of that. However, it doesn’t need it anyway. Everything on the island is accessible. Plus, you can take tours, which usually have transportation included or climb a boat that will take you anywhere you want to go. What is even more, renting a car, walking, biking or taking a two-seater buggy are always an option.
Animals in the waters – If there’s anything Bora Bora is rich with, it’s the animal world underneath the clear waters. With hundreds of species swimming in the reefs and lagoon, you’ll have a breathtaking experience. Go snorkeling or scuba diving to see the most out of these creatures. Some animals you’ll likely encounter up close are reef fish, sharks, manta rays, sea turtles, starfish and so much more.
Coconuts – Coconuts are included among the Bora Bora facts for the simple reason that they’re the main produce of the island. You’ll see that they’re almost in every activity on the island. From valuable ingredients in the traditional Tahitian meals to the tours where you can learn how to actually open one, they’re everywhere. There are even legends associated with the island’s coconut palms, once again pronouncing their importance for the natives.
Activities and attractions – While you’re there, you’ll surely want to explore the most thrilling activities and attractions in Bora Bora. After all, it’s not like you come there every day. Well, my friends, there are a bunch of stuff that can occupy your whole time besides the bungalows, of course 😉 You can discover the depths of the lagoon by snorkeling, diving, jet skiing and swimming or go on land and explore the forests and islets. The choice is yours. Head on to this post to read everything you can do and see during your visit to Bora Bora.