Escape to a Remote Island – Fakarava Atoll FAQ

Fakarava Atoll, a stunning island in French Polynesia’s Tuamotu Archipelago, calls adventurers with its pristine lagoon, white and pink sand beaches, vibrant marine life, and untouched natural beauty. It’s a photographer’s paradise, especially during the golden hours around sunrise and sunset. Prepare to be captivated by this remote island’s off-the-beaten-path allure…

Location: French Polynesia | Fakarava Atoll
Accommodation Type: Overwater and Beach | Remote Island
Bookings to: Expedia

Fakarava Atoll


Fakarava is an atoll in the Tuamotu archipelago, approximately 490 km northeast of Tahiti.

It consists of tiny reef islands (motus) stretched in a single line, surrounded by one of the largest lagoons in Polynesia, measuring 60 km long and 25 km wide.

The atoll is a UNESCO biosphere reserve, protecting its exceptional ecological value.

Fakarava Map – zoom in to see accommodation, eateries, and activities…

Getting There and Around

Fakarava is accessible via the Garuae Pass in the north and the Tumakohuna Pass in the south. An airport opened in 1995, with regular flights from Tahiti, making it easier for tourists to explore this paradise. You can also reach the island by boat from nearby atolls like Apataki and Toau.

Bicycles are the most popular mode of transport, allowing visitors to easily explore the main motus (islets) at a leisurely pace while taking in the scenery. Most pensions, hotels, and local shops rent out bicycles for reasonable daily/weekly rates.

Walking is an option for shorter distances between accommodations, beaches, and villages along the sandy roads and paths.

Small outboard motor boats are essential for accessing the outer motus, lagoon areas, and prime snorkeling/diving spots not reachable by land.

Some larger resorts provide golf carts for guests to use within the property grounds.

With no cars or major roads, getting around Fakarava is a laidback, eco-friendly experience suited to the atoll’s remote and naturalistic charm.


Fakarava enjoys a warm tropical climate year-round with temperatures of 75°F-88°F. The drier season from April to October is most popular for visitors.

November- March is the wetter season with brief showers. Trade winds provide a pleasant breeze. Lagoon waters average 80°F, ideal for water activities. The consistently warm weather and calm waters make Fakarava perfect for outdoor adventures.

Fakarava Atoll French Polynesia Reef Sharks

Underwater Paradise

Fakarava’s lagoon boasts incredible biodiversity, making it a dream for snorkelling and diving enthusiasts.

The lagoon is home to a vast array of marine life, including rays, dolphins, turtles, and countless species of fish.

The famous Tumakohuna Pass (also called “Passe Sud” or South Pass) gained fame through a documentary showing a wall of hundreds of sharks hunting at night.

This Pass and the Garuae Pass offer dramatic drift dives along walls and coral gardens, with chances to see sharks, rays, dolphins, and vibrant fish.

Fakarava Atoll Pink Sand

Pink Sand Beaches

Fakarava offers secluded beaches with white and pink sands, formed by crushed coral mixed with calcium deposits from tiny marine creatures. The soft pink hues create a mesmerizing contrast against the turquoise waters.

The peaceful beaches are perfect for relaxation, disconnecting, and beachcombing.

Fakarava Atoll French Polynesia

Sunsets and Starry Skies

Enjoy breathtaking sunsets over the lagoon, painting the sky with vivid oranges and reds. Marvel at the clear, star-filled skies at night, away from light pollution. It’s just you and the universe!

Fakarava Atoll French Polynesia Church

Friendly Locals

The people of Fakarava are warm and welcoming, adding to the island’s charm. Immerse yourself in the laid-back Polynesian culture and way of life.

Fresh Coconuts and Pearl Farms

Sip on fresh coconut water, a refreshing treat readily available on the island. Explore pearl farms, where you can learn about the fascinating process of pearl cultivation, a significant industry in French Polynesia.

Fakarava Atoll French Polynesia


  • Remember to bring enough cash with you, as no ATMs or banks are on the island.
  • You can easily explore Fakarava by renting a bike and riding along the entire island, from the airport to the narrow land area.

Fakarava Island Hotels and Accommodation

Accommodation options on Fakarava Atoll are limited but offer a range of experiences to suit different budgets and preferences. Advanced booking is highly recommended, especially during peak season. See the latest list of accommodation at Expedia.

Family Pensions/Guest Houses – small, locally-run pensions offer an authentic taste of Polynesian hospitality and culture. Rooms are basic but clean and meals are often included.

Beach Bungalows – a more upscale experience, these bungalow resorts are located right on the beach. They offer more privacy and amenities like air-conditioning.

Camping – there are two campgrounds: Relais Marama and Camping Tekopa Village. You’ll need to be self-sufficient with supplies and follow eco-friendly practices. The Relais is closer to ‘town’, you can hire bikes from them, free WIFI, and breakfast is included.

Liveaboard Boats – Diving enthusiasts can choose to stay on a liveaboard boat, which provides access to the best dive sites around the atoll. See Polynesian Liveaboard Diving.

Whether you’re a sea-life fan, a beach lover, or seeking tranquility, Fakarava offers an incredible experience.


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