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Bora Bora Culture

Bora Bora Culture
Nearly 5,800 people live on Bora Bora and most still embrace the culture of myths and legends that have been handed down from the Polynesian gods.
This ancient folklore influences the traditional song and dance of the island’s people and they love to share these celebrations with visitors. During festivals especially, women are adorned with leis and hei (crowns) of tropical flowers- the desire for beauty is anchored in the Polynesian culture.

Protestant missionaries arrived on the island in the 19th century and destroyed a large number of the ancient marae (sacred stone temples) in an effort to convert the natives. Though more than 150 years have passed since the conversion, many people still maintain their Christian beliefs and are considered to be very religious and pious. You may even notice family gravesites in the front yards of the local’s homes.

The pace of the people of Bora Bora is slow and relaxed and they live by the philosophy, “aita pea pea,” which means “not to worry.” A good way to see first-hand how Bora Borans live is to take a walk through the main settlement of Vaitape Village, which sits at the base of Mount Pahia.

The main languages of the island are French and Tahitian, but English is spoken at many of the hotels, shops, restaurants and other tourist attractions.