Papeete: what to do and see in the city capital of French Polynesia

papeete market
papeete market

What to see in Papeete, where it is, places to visit, attractions, market and museum pearl.

Guide Papeete

Capital and main urban center of the overseas territory of French Polynesia, Papeete is a bustling port city on the island of Tahiti. In the small town, not far from the waterfront, it is the structure that houses the picturesque market of Papeete. The market is on two floors with stands full of various food products, meat, fish, fruit, and craft products, including the famous sarongs.

The current complex dates back to 1987, the former buildings were destroyed, first by the bombs dropped by the big warship German and later by cyclones. Pearl cultivation, particularly the black pearl of Tahiti, is a major economic activity of the island, so it is very interesting to visit the small Museum of Pearl, set up by Robert Van, a rich farmer of pearls, which he created with the aim of attracting customers in his shop.

Parc Bougainville, named French explorer Louis Antoine de Bougainville, is located in the city center and, with its lussuoreggiante vegetation, is a haven of peace and tranquility. Moving inland we reach the Bain Loti, the heavenly place where, in the novel The Marriage of Loti, written by Pierre Loti in 1880, he was encountered between Loti and beautiful Polynesian rarahu.

Continuing on foot is possible, with access permission, you can go hiking in the Vallée de Fautaua reaching a magnificent panorama over the waterfall Fautaua and, going to the top of the waterfall, take a refreshing swim. There are high mountains, including Mount Orohena (2,241 m), there are plateaus, waterfalls and archaeological sites, very beautiful places within walking distance.