If you have been following me for a while on the Facebook group or on this blog, you know that I always recommend at least three activities to fully enjoy what Bora Bora has to offer: one underwater, one on water, and one on land.
But have you ever thought about combining both land and water activities into one exciting day of adventure? Trust me, it's totally worth it!
I had the chance to try a full day of quad biking and jet skiing, and let me tell you, it was an amazing experience. Here are the details of my adventure:
Table of Contents
The pick up
The meeting point for this activity is located in Faanui, at the activity base in the north of the island. If you are staying in a hotel, don't worry, the pick-up from your hotel's base is included, and the tour schedule will be adjusted according to your shuttle schedule.
Good to know : Please note that the team is in the process of ordering a boat that should be available May 1st (2023) in order to offer free pick-ups by boat, which is more convenient and avoids the need to take the shuttle to get to the main island, which can sometimes be costly depending on where you are staying.
If you book a full day, the ATV tour is done in the morning and the jet ski tour is done in the afternoon. However, it is possible to book only the ATV tour or only the jet ski tour if you don't want to do both activities on the same day.
ATV Tour in Bora Bora
Upon arriving at the base, your guide will greet you and lead you through your experience. Before starting, you will need to sign a liability waiver to ensure your safety and that of others.
You will then be able to choose a helmet from a wide selection. The helmets provided are meticulously maintained and disinfected after each use to ensure a safe and hygienic experience. Additionally, you will be given a cap for hygiene purposes.
Your instructor, Manu (who is also the owner of the company), will then introduce you to the ATV’s. Although I do not have much experience with quads, they seemed almost new and well-maintained to me. Manu will take the time to explain in detail how to operate the machine, which is very simple and accessible to all, even newbies like me.
If you have any belongings with you, a small box is available at the back of the quad for safe storage. If your belongings are larger, you can strap them to the front, but be careful of the mud that can be thrown on them during the ride. If your stuffs are too big, you can also leave them at the base.
Once the briefing is complete, let's go on a 3 hour ATV tour on Bora Bora on & off roads!
The tour starts with about 15 minutes on the Bora Bora’s main road. No difficulty here (and minimum trafic) which allows you to get acclimatized to the Quad before starting the serious stuff.
Good to know : If the guide notices that you are in trouble or if you don't feel comfortable driving the ATV, a second guide will be called to the rescue to drive in your place. This way, you can still enjoy your ATV tour while remaining safe and comfortable.
Driving the vehicle was initially unsettling for me as a newbie. The throttle is extremely sensitive, and the first few turns can feel scary. I was hesitant to turn at first, but after a few minutes and getting used to it, I found the ride to be very pleasant and safe. The ride is smooth and comfortable for both the driver and the passenger, who sits higher and has a great views. The passenger will also have a back seat for confort.
The first stop is on the north side of the island, at the remains of World War II cannons. This is where the serious stuff starts and by "serious stuff" I mean a steep climb right next to a cliff edge. 😱
The guide will ask you to shift gears and then open the lane to show you exactly where to pass, but I must admit that the drivers all exchanged slightly panicked looks at this point. But don't worry, Manu is stationed at the critical spot to grab the front of your quad if anything goes wrong.
Once at the top, the reward is a spectacular panoramic view of the lagoon of Bora Bora and Mount Otemanu. The 50 shades of blue are beautiful in the morning. In the distance, we can see the St. Regis and the Thalasso. A little lower, we can see one of the cannons, a reminder of the US Navy's occupation of the island.
Manu will tell you more about the island's history, the mountain, and so on. He is an island native and will gladly answer all of your questions. He also keeps fresh water on hand, which you can request at any time if you are thirsty. After a few minutes of taking nice pictures, it's time to go down and continue our journey.
Insider tip : It is also possible to access this spot without booking an ATV tour. You will have to park your car at the entrance of the road, pay the 500XPF entrance fee, then walk up to the viewpoint.
On our way to the next spot we will pass in front of Matira beach, considered as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and its magnificent views on the lagoon before starting a new climb, this time just before the village of Vaitape, at the level of the telephone antenna of the island. The ascent is steep but easier than the first one (maybe also because we begin slowly to master the machine).
Once arrived at the top, we are rewarded by a view just as beautiful. We can see the bay of Povai and the resorts on the other side. From this point of view, we realize that the island is really very small, a very small pebble in the middle of the Pacific. It is really fascinating to see the immensity of the ocean and to feel so small beside. Our guide, Manu, tells us about the island's legends, which help us understand its history and traditions. After this break, it's time to go back down. While the ascent went smoothly, the descent was a little more difficult, even frightening.
We then return to the base for the best part of the morning: Manu and his family have created quad biking trails just above his base. Climbs, descents, small paths winding through lush vegetation and the rainforest, mud puddles, in short, everything to have fun. And the best part? Manu is the only one who has access to this spot - he owns the land.
Where other spots can get very crowded in the morning, here you are sure to be the only group.
At the top, two other canons will be waiting for you to get a closer look. Manu will be able to answer all your questions about them.
This is also the time for a little refreshment/snack. Manu will offer you a local fruit juice and a snack made of seasonal fruits (mango and banana for us) with grated coconut on top. Simple but really delicious it will give you the energy to continue your adventure!
After enjoying this well deserved break, you can have one last fun in the mud before going back down. This one-of-a-kind experience will live on in your memory forever!
Overall, I loved my ATV tour in Bora Bora.
What I liked best was that we were in a small group of up to four machines. Throughout the day, this created a friendly and convivial atmosphere. Manu, our instructor, also impressed me with all of his stories. He knows the island inside and out as a native and can answer any questions you may have. He was also very funny and always very caring with his clients.
I also want to emphasize that having access to this exclusive location is a huge plus. We had the opportunity to discover this incredible location, off the beaten path and away from the usual (and crowded) quad spots in Bora Bora.
However, it's important to note that the roads can be bumpy, muddy, and wet (especially during the rainy season), which adds to the excitement and adventure. Although not recommended for the elderly, pregnant women, or people with back problems, this activity is perfectly safe for healthy people.
Quality safety equipment and experienced guides ensure your safety throughout the trip. It is also possible to get splashed with mud during the ride, but this only adds to the fun and memorable experience. I recommend wearing a casual, comfortable outfit that you don't mind getting dirty in so that you can fully enjoy the adventure. You should also bring a pair of sturdy, closed-toe shoes.
Jet ski tour in Bora Bora
After resting and refreshing at the base, it's time to move on to the second part of the day: the jet ski tour. The jet skis are moored directly in front of the base; all you have to do is walk in the water to get to them.
Good to know : It's worth noting that Manu's jet skis are classified as "ride" jet skis. So they are not the most powerful or fast, but they are extremely stable and pleasant to ride. They also have a large trunk where you can safely store your belongings, which was especially useful since I was carrying a large backpack and camera gear.
The tour is divided into two sections, with a lunch stop in the middle. During the first part of the tour, Manu took us to various locations where we stopped to take pictures of the breathtaking scenery. The crystal-clear water and the lush tropical landscape on the background are a feast for the eyes.
However, the real highlight of the tour was when we reached the pass where dozens of dolphins awaited us. As someone who has lived in Bora Bora for 5 years, I can attest that dolphin sightings are rare. Therefore, I was thrilled that our guide took the time to bring us to see them. This was the first time I have gone on a jet ski tour where the guide took the time to show us dolphins. Usually, it is not on the itinerary. We stayed there for several minutes, awestruck as the dolphins gracefully moved around our jet skis. It was an unforgettable experience, and I will always be grateful to Manu for making it happen. In fact, it was the most memorable moment of my entire jet ski tour, and something that I will cherish for the rest of my life
Insider tip : That being said, always keep in mind that the wildlife in Bora Bora is not a zoo. Therefore, it is never guaranteed that you will see animals during a tour. This applies to dolphins, sharks, rays, whales, turtles, and so on.
Manu then took us to the motu where lunch is served.
The view from the motu is very beautiful, although spoiled by the lagoonarium cages right next to it. I'll never understand the need for this activity when it's possible to easily see marine animals in their natural habitat without locking them up, but that's another subject…
Lunch was served by the plate, rather than a buffet. On the menu were Polynesian specialties: grilled fish and chicken, small raw fish salad, rice salad, local dessert "Poe" and fresh tropical fruits. After lunch, Manu demonstrated how to open a coconut.
If I had to find a negative point, it would be the lunch, which was not the best I've ever had on this type of tour. It was okay, but not exceptional. However, I truly appreciated the intimate atmosphere, where at some motu there can be a large crowd during lunchtime. Overall, everything else more than makes up for this minor issue.
After lunch, we took the jet ski out again, but only for a few minutes, to reach a sandbank and enjoy the view. We spent almost an hour swimming, chatting with the other participants, and having a great time. It was a wonderful way to end the day before heading back to the base.
Compared to other jet ski experiences I've had, this one was much more relaxed. We were able to take our time, enjoy the scenery, take pictures, and swim on the sandbar. Other tours in Bora Bora often have every minute scheduled, but this one allowed us to truly unwind and enjoy the moment.
Combo ATV + Jet Ski in Bora Bora : Pros & Cons
Here is a small sum up of the things to keep in mind if you are thinking of booking this full day ATV + Jet Ski in Bora Bora.
👍 The pros
- Free pick up from base / drop off
- Small, intimate groups (for both ATV and jet ski & lunch)
- Exclusive spot for ATV
- Native, funny & caring guide + Friendly staff
- Well maintained machines
- Chill tour, we never felt rushed
👎 The cons
- Food for lunch was not amazing
- Jet skis are not the most powerful / fast (but once again very stable)
❤️ And, as a final anecdote, how can I not thank Manu, his wife Vaipoe, and the entire team? When we arrived at the base at the end of the day, my husband Marc realized he had lost his phone (which contained all the photos of our wedding - obviously not saved ). Not knowing when he might have lost it, the team kindly offered to take him back to the last quad spot (the most bumpy one). Unfortunately, they discovered nothing. We attempted to contact the motu but were unsuccessful. Manu seeing how sad we were to have lost those pictures then went to the motu first thing the next day to search everywhere... and found the phone! We are eternally grateful to this incredible team for providing ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ service!
In conclusion, if you are looking for a unique and memorable experience in Bora Bora, I highly recommend booking a quad and jet ski tour with them!
Combo ATV + Jet Ski in Bora Bora : Frequently asked questions
I’m pregnant, can I still ride a quad or a jet ski?
No, these activities are not recommended for pregnant women as they can very bumpy.
Do I need a driving license to ride an ATV in Bora Bora?
Yes, during the tour you will ride on Bora Bora's main road, so a driving license is mandatory.
Can a child take the tour?
The minimum age for riding (with an adult driving) is 4 years old for the ATV and 6 years old for the jet ski. Good to know: Babysitting services are available for children under 4 years old. Prices: 2500 XPF per child.
What is the minimum age to drive a jet ski in Bora Bora? Do you need a licence?
You don't need a license to drive a jet ski, but you have to be at least 15 years old.
🛍️ Essential items to bring to your combo ATV + Jet Ski in Bora Bora
- Water resistant sunscreen : Alba Botanica Sunscreen for Face and Body SPF 50
- DEET mosquitoes repellent : Repel 100 Insect Repellent - 10-Hour Protection
- Action waterproof camera : GoPro Hero11 Black + Floating handle
- Rain compact jacket : Avoogue Raincoat
- Travel towel : Compact Quick Dry Microfiber Towel
- Rashguard : Roxy Women's Long Sleeve UPF 50 Rashguard
- Water shoes : VIFUUR Water Sports Unisex Shoes Black
- Dry bag : Amazon Waterproof Dry Bag + Phone Pouch
Book your ATV + Jet Ski tour in Bora Bora
To book your tour you can use the links below or get in touch via the form below (especially if you want a private tour)!