France · Bora Bora
Undoubtedly the most celebrated island in the South Pacific, Bora Bora is French Polynesia’s leading lady. Her beauty is unrivaled and her fame, unwavering. Bora Bora is one of the few places on earth that everyone hopes to witness in their lifetime—and once you see it, you are forever enamored.
Bora Bora is a volcanic island in the Leeward group of the Society Islands of French Polynesia, an “Overseas Country” financially assisted by France in the Pacific Ocean. The island, located about 230 kilometers northwest of Papeete, is surrounded by a lagoon and a barrier reef. In the center of the island are the remnants of an extinct volcano rising to two peaks, Mount Pahia and Mount Otemanu, the highest point at 727 meters. The original name of the island in the Tahitian language might be better rendered as Pora Pora, meaning “First Born”; an early transcription found in 18th and 19th century accounts, is Bolabolla or Bollabolla.
Bora Bora is perfectly possible to spoil oneself in one of the incredibly luxurious high-class resorts and spend the savings of a lifetime in a few days. Nonetheless, a bit of planning ahead can allow enjoyment of the majestic scenery with a tighter budget. Keep in mind that in any case Bora Bora is a tremendously pricey destination. Everything (catering and activities) ranges from “expensive” to “indescribably expensive”.
In ancient times the island was called “Pora pora mai te pora”, meaning “created by the gods” in the local Tahitian dialect. This was often abbreviated Pora Pora meaning simply first born. Because of ambiguities in the phonemes of the Tahitian language, this could also be pronounced Bola Bola or Bora Bora. When explorer Jacob Roggeveen first landed on the island, he and his crew adopted the name Bora Bora which has stood ever since.