Eating in Bora Bora is known to be expensive, and yes, the imported foods can be pricier than back in your own country.
Make the most of the fresh local Polynesian food and visit a local grocery store. Combine that with a dining plan at your
Bora Bora resort, and you will save money, as well as have the best eating. We cover all the best places to eat and ways to save in our How to Save in Bora Bora Ebook.
If you are worried about the Bora Bora food costs, consider buying a meal plan at your Bora Bora resort.
Here's an example: For $150/person on top of the room rate, we could have breakfast included for the week. The breakfast buffet alone was $70/day. At the very least, get a deal including breakfast. You will spend most of your Bora Bora vacation at your resort and will eat there often.
If your resort is on a motu, getting to Bora Bora restaurants, cafes, or mini-marts includes a boat ride across the lagoon (plus a bus or a van ride for some). You won't want to be doing it every day.
If you find a good deal, I recommend buying breakfast and diner when booking your Bora Bora vacation at a resort. Then if you want to eat out a couple of times, at restaurants of your choice, you can, and still be ahead. Be prepared to spend $300/day on food at your resort If you don't buy the meal plan. Pre-purchasing the meal plan may cost $300/week instead! So check out the options.
Resorts within walking distance to a variety of Bora Bora restaurants and cafes are the Sofitel Marara, Intercontinental Le Moana, and the Maitai Hotel.
The Bora Bora restaurants are located on the main island of Bora Bora. Most offer free transport from your resort or shuttle boat dock. Some have an island ambiance that's fun to experience, and if you're staying at a motu resort you have a moonlight boat ride back. One of the most popular Bora Bora restaurants only has 7 tables. To eat there it's wise to book ahead. We also enjoy lunching at the Bora Bora Yacht Club.
There's cheaper eating in Bora Bora (for breakfast, lunch, or dinner) at the interesting Bora Bora cafes sprinkled around the main island between Vaitape Village and Matira Beach.
To find one in French Polynesia, look for the sign, 'Magasin'. You can purchase grocery items for eating during the day and save on meal expenses. Fresh, crunchy baguettes are popular island fare and can be bought for about 60 cents. You can buy salami, colds meats, French cheeses (my favorite is the garlic Boursin) and fresh fruit; and have a tasty feast for a good price. This is a convenient lunch when you are exploring the main island and it is also useful to buy these items to take back to your fridge for snacks. You'll save $$ if you know where to find Bora Bora supermarkets. This is a convenient lunch when you are exploring the main island, but it is also useful to buy these items to take back to your fridge for snacks. See our Bora Bora map for the locations of the mini marts on Bora Bora.
You're on an exotic Bora Bora vacation, so eat as the locals do. For an authentic Tahitian dining experience eat at the small roadside 'snacks' and roulottes on the side of the road. They offer tasty, inexpensive meals.
When eating in Bora Bora, at your resort or a restaurant, choose the most 'local' ingredients to have the freshest, tastiest meals. The fish in French Polynesia is so good. Go for ocean fish, rather than lagoon fish. Poisson Cru is a favorite Polynesian dish of tuna marinated in lime and coconut. It's delicious and healthy. The 'fish of the gods' is up there with the best fish I have ever eaten. Its name in French is saumon des diex, and it's taste and texture is like a combination of tuna and salmon.
If you want meat, the lamb is usually good. It will have come from the closest meat producing country, New Zealand. Even though I'm Australian, I have to say that New Zealand lamb is better!
Tahiti imports much of its food as they don't have sufficient flat land for producing vegetables and meat. And while this can be a good thing - amazing French delicacies - choosing the local Polynesian ingredients will usually give you a higher quality meal.
Want to save in other ways? Due to popular demand we've written an e-book focused on how to save thousands on your Bora Bora travel, which covers every aspect of a vacation.