Known for its luxurious overwater bungalows and stunning lagoon, Bora Bora is a tropical paradise in the middle of the South Pacific that will make you never want to leave. But before you go, it’s essential to know what items you should add to your Bora Bora packing list.
There are so many things to do on this tropical island, from swimming in the crystal clear lagoon to exploring lush jungles, that it can be hard to know what to pack for Bora Bora.
But don’t worry! We’ll tell you exactly what to bring to Bora Bora and what not to bring and provide helpful packing tips.
With the help of our detailed packing list for Bora Bora, you’ll be ready in no time to jet set to the island of luxury and fancy resorts!
But before we go over what to pack for a Bora Bora vacation, let’s quickly spend a few minutes going over some basic information you’ll need to know regarding this packing guide.
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Planning a last-minute trip to Bora Bora? Here are a few items you can’t forget to pack:
🧴 Reef safe sunscreen: Protect your skin from harmful UV rays while protecting the coral reefs
⛵️ Travel Insurance: Make sure your trip is protected in case of any unexpected mishaps. Being prepared will give you peace of mind.
🕶 Polarized sunglasses: Shield your eyes from the sun and keep a lookout for dolphins and turtles
🔌 Universal travel adapter: Make sure you can plug in all your electronic devices no matter where you are
📸 GoPro/underwater camera: Capture gorgeous shots of the amazing views and aquatic life
🎒 Daypack: Carrying snacks, water, and other items can make days out much more enjoyable
About This Bora Bora Packing List
As you go through this blog post, you’ll see we didn’t include basics like toothpaste, hand sanitizer, or underwear.
These Bora Bora packing list items are common sense, and you’ll want to bring these along with any other items related to your personal hygiene and medication needs.
This list focuses more on the Bora Bora-specific items you’ll want to bring along for your trip, which you didn’t necessarily think of.
You can also use this packing list as an Islands of Tahiti packing list, a Bora Bora honeymoon packing list, or a Moorea packing list since they’re all part of the Society Islands of French Polynesia and have similar packing needs.
Bora Bora Packing List: Clothing and Accessories
Now let’s get on to the good stuff — exactly what clothing items and accessories to add to your Bora Bora packing list!
When packing for a tropical getaway, sun dresses and rompers are must-haves!
Soft, lightweight fabrics will help keep you cool in the heat, while floral and cute patterns give a cheerful touch.
Sundresses and rompers are great to wear to breakfast, lunch, and dinner, or even to the beach!
Plus, they pair perfectly with sandals, and you can dress them up or down depending on the occasion.
A sunhat is a must for any Bora Bora packing list because it’ll protect your face from the sun’s harmful UV rays.
The rays can get pretty strong in Bora Bora, so you’ll want to make sure your head is covered during any outdoor activities.
Look for a sun hat that’s breathable and comfortable and has a wide brim that covers your face, neck, and ears.
Trust us — sunburns on the face are a whole new level of pain!
Bringing a lightweight rain jacket’s always a good idea, no matter what destination you visit, and Bora Bora is no exception!
The rainy season in Bora Bora typically runs from November through April, so you’ll want to be prepared if you get caught in heavy rain.
Remember that a quick, unexpected rain shower can occur during the dry season, too, so it’s a good idea to be prepared with a light waterproof jacket that’ll keep you dry while also allowing you to remain cool and comfortable.
Next up on this Bora Bora packing list are flip-flops! Because how can you enjoy the beach without a pair of comfy footwear to slip on?
Flip-flops are lightweight and easy to pack, and you don’t have to get your nice shoes sandy at the beach.
You’ll also keep the soles of your feet protected from the hot sand, which is great when you go for a long walk at the beach.
Our tried and true pro tip: Buy a cheap pair and toss them before you head home.
Swimsuit cover-ups are an essential item on any packing list for Bora Bora.
A cover-up is perfect for throwing on while walking from your villa to the beach or grabbing a quick bite to eat at the on-site restaurant after a day in the sun.
We recommend choosing between an airy dress, a flowy kimono, or even a long sarong; make sure it’s light and breathable so you won’t overheat!
We suggest packing a few different options so you can mix and match for any occasion.
If you plan on swimming or doing any water activity in Bora Bora, it’s important to bring a pair of water shoes with you.
Water shoes protect your feet from sharp rocks and coral while allowing you to move around freely in the water.
Additionally, water shoes provide superior traction on wet and slippery surfaces, so you won’t have to worry about slipping and falling.
Finally, make sure the shoes are lightweight, comfortable, and made with breathable fabric.
What’s a beach vacation without a few cute swimsuits?
Swimsuits are one of the most important items on this Bora Bora packing list, and we suggest packing a few different options.
We recommend wearing a one-piece while snorkeling or diving, as it will provide more coverage and stay put as you explore the waters.
On the other hand, bikinis are always a great option for lounging at the beach and taking a dip in the pool.
Go for bright colors and fun patterns if you want to take some amazing Instagram shots!
They can be worn alone for a casual beach look, or you can dress them up with fun accessories like hats and jewelry.
Pack at least two or three t-shirts or tank tops in different colors and styles to easily switch up your look without too much fuss.
Being in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, Bora Bora is hot and humid, so it’s important to pack lightweight shorts and skirts that won’t feel too heavy on your skin.
We recommend bringing each item in neutral colors like black and white, as they can easily be dressed up or down depending on the occasion.
A long flowy skirt is also a great option for days when you want to feel extra fancy without sacrificing comfort, and it pairs perfectly with t-shirts and tank tops.
Don’t forget to pack some comfy shorts for lounging around your villa after a long day at the beach!
A pair of nice sandals are the perfect way to glam up your dinner look without worrying about uncomfortable heels.
Can you imagine wearing high heels through the sand on the way to dinner? Yeah, we can’t, either.
Whether you choose gladiator sandals, strappy sandals, or platform sandals, make sure they’re lightweight and comfortable.
You’ll thank us later when you can slip them off and not worry about sore and tired feet!
Some of us go to Bora Bora to be beach bums, while some of us like a little bit of adventure along with our beach days.
Hiking in Bora Bora is an unforgettable experience providing spectacular views of the turquoise lagoon, making you feel like you’ve stepped into paradise.
You’ll want to add hiking shoes to your Bora Bora packing list so your feet stay protected while exploring the beautiful trails.
Look for sturdy hiking shoes that have good traction and provide cushioning to avoid blisters after a long hike.
What to pack for Bora Bora for a nice evening out or dinner? A maxi dress, of course!
Flowy maxi dresses are a fun and easy way to show off your style while staying cool and comfortable.
We suggest bringing dresses in neutral colors like white, black, or navy blue so you can easily accessorize them with an eye-catching necklace or statement earrings.
Let’s face it: Bora Bora is an absolute paradise, and you’ll spend most of your time outdoors.
We suggest packing a pair of polarized sunglasses to protect your eyes from the sun’s harsh UV rays, so you can enjoy all the beauty Bora Bora has to offer without worrying about eye strain.
We’re emphasizing polarized sunglasses with this Bora Bora packing list, as they provide better protection against glare and reflections.
What to Pack for Bora Bora: Beach Essentials
Now that we’ve covered what to wear in Bora Bora, let’s move on to the beach essentials.
With its crystal clear waters, white sand beaches, and colorful coral reef, Bora Bora is a mecca for snorkeling enthusiasts.
Luxury hotels such as St Regis typically provide free snorkel gear for their guests, but if you’re staying at a smaller property, you should double-check with them to see if they offer snorkel gear.
If you have to bring your own gear, ensure you have a snorkel, mask, and fins.
A lightweight daypack is an important Bora Bora packing list item, as it helps you carry all your main essentials in one convenient bag.
Whether you’re taking a tour of the island or going on a boat trip to a nearby island, you’ll want to bring a small daypack that can fit all your essentials, like sunscreen, spare clothes, phone, and wallet.
Look for one that’s lightweight but durable enough to hold all your items and has padded straps for maximum comfort.
Waterproof Phone Pouch
If there’s one item to bring to Bora Bora that most people forget, it’s a waterproof phone pouch.
Whether you’re swimming, kayaking, jet skiing, or taking a dip in the sea, you’ll want to ensure your phone is safe and dry from the salt water.
If you don’t want to carry around a phone pouch, an OtterBox or LifeProof case is a great alternative.
If you plan on doing any water activities, such as kayaking, sailing, going on a boat ride, or stand-up paddle boarding, you’ll benefit from using a dry bag to keep your items safe and dry.
Some of them can be bulky, so choose the size of your dry bag depending on what items you want to store inside.
Look for a dry bag with reinforced waterproof seams, and check whether or not it comes with straps so you can attach it to your paddleboard or carry it as a backpack.
A good option is to check with your hotel beforehand to see if they provide any dry bags for their guests.
If your hotel provides dry bags, they’ll likely provide wet bags.
A wet bag comes in handy when you want to store your wet clothes, swimwear, or beach towel without having to worry about your other items getting wet.
They’re especially helpful if you plan on island hopping or doing any water activities and want a separate bag to store all your wet items when you’re done.
What to Bring to Bora Bora When It Comes to Travel Documents
We know you’re excited to get to Bora Bora, and you want to start packing right away, but don’t forget these travel documents!
We know, we know. A passport is given regarding what to bring to Bora Bora.
You’ll be surprised at how many travelers forget their passports when packing because they get caught up in packing all the fun items.
You’ll also want to ensure that your passport is up to date and has at least six months’ validity beyond your return date.
It’s always a good idea to make extra copies of your passport in case anything happens to your original passport.
Leave one at home with a trusted family member or friend, and place one in the safe in your hotel room when you get to Bora Bora.
If you plan on renting a car or scooter while in Bora Bora, bring your driver’s license as well.
You’ll be required to present it to the rental company before they let you rent any vehicles.
Credit Card/Debit Card
Another no-brainer on this Bora Bora packing list is your credit card and debit card.
You’ll want to bring at least one credit and debit card with you if one doesn’t work or gets lost.
It’s also always a good idea to notify your bank and credit card company before you travel so they don’t block any transactions while you’re away.
Although it’s not a tangible item, don’t forget to get travel insurance before you go to Bora Bora because it’ll give you peace of mind if anything happens during your trip.
From medical emergencies and trip cancellations to lost luggage and more, travel insurance can come in handy if anything unexpected happens.
Our personal favorite travel insurance company is SafetyWing because they offer the best coverage at an affordable price, and their customer service is top-notch.
Depending on what country you’re from, you may need a visa before entering Bora Bora.
If you’re American, you don’t need a visa as long as you’re not staying more than 90 days.
However, if you’re from a different country, this might not be the case.
Be sure to check the Bora Bora immigration and government website for any visa requirements before traveling.
PADI Card (If You’re Diving)
Scuba diving in Bora Bora is a surreal experience, and if you’re planning on doing it, make sure to bring your PADI card.
You’ll be asked to present it before any dive activity, and some dive shops may also require proof of an advanced open-water certification.
Bora Bora Packing List: Electronics
Besides your phone, laptop, and camera, there are some other electronics you may want to consider for your Bora Bora packing list.
Go Pro/Underwater Camera
With its vibrant marine life and clear turquoise waters, we can’t think of a more beautiful place to take amazing underwater photos and videos than Bora Bora!
Packing a GoPro or an underwater camera is a must because it’ll help you capture memories of your time in Bora Bora that you can share with friends and family back home.
And don’t forget to pack enough memory cards to get you through your tropical vacation!
A portable charger is something you’ll want to put on your Bora Bora packing list because it can save you from a lot of stress and frustration.
If you’re on an excursion or away from your resort, and your phone dies, a portable charger can be a real lifesaver!
We recommend bringing a small, lightweight one that’s powerful enough to charge your phone at least a few times.
These days, most five-star hotels and resorts in Bora Bora are compatible with American plugs, but it’s still a good idea to bring an electrical converter and adapter, just in case.
For reference, Bora Bora uses type A, B, and E sockets. The standard voltage is 110/220 V, and the standard frequency is 60/50 Hz.
Aside from debit and credit cards, you’ll also want to bring some cash.
Cash is especially valuable when you want to tip the hotel staff, buy souvenirs, or take a taxi.
Some hotels will exchange your currency for the local currency, the French Pacific Franc (XPF).
You’ll also find ATMs scattered around the island, so don’t worry about getting your cash exchanged at the airport.
What to Pack for a Bora Bora Vacation: Medications, Toiletries, and Other Essential Items
We’ll wrap up this packing list for Bora Bora with toiletries, medications, and other personal items you didn’t think of.
There’s a likely chance that you’ll get a sunburn on your getaway, so be sure to pack some aloe vera.
It’ll help soothe your skin and relieve the burning sensation caused by sunburns and even jellyfish stings.
If you’re taking any prescription medications, bring enough of them with you on your trip.
You’ll also want to bring some basic over-the-counter medicines like ibuprofen, antihistamines, and Pepto Bismol, just in case.
Small First Aid Kit
You should always pack a small first aid kit for any trip you go on.
It can come in handy if you get cuts, scrapes, or bumps while exploring Bora Bora and its surroundings.
You don’t need to pack a massive kit with endless supplies; a few bandages, antibiotic ointment, and antiseptic wipes will do the trick.
In Bora Bora, you’ll find plenty of mosquitoes and other insects, and trust us, they’ll definitely bite if you don’t take the necessary precautions.
Pack a reliable insect repellent that’s strong enough to keep them away from your skin.
We’re fans of all-natural, DEET-free insect repellent because it’s safer for the environment and your skin.
A Good Book (Or Kindle)
Whether you’re in the mood for some light beach reading or you want to get lost in a good book, Bora Bora is the perfect destination.
Imagine lounging in your beach chair or hammock while reading your favorite book or magazine while hearing the waves crash in the background; it doesn’t get much better!
Pack a book or two or your Kindle, and you’ll be all set for the perfect relaxing beach day.
Reusable Water Bottle
Not only is bringing your own reusable water bottle environmentally friendly, but it can also help you save a lot of money.
Bringing an insulated water bottle with you will allow you to fill it up at any time so that you can have cold water on hand while exploring Bora Bora.
If you’re staying at a luxury resort, you’ll probably be provided with bottled water, but you’ll appreciate an insulated water bottle when hiking or adventuring in the hot sun.
Protecting your skin from the blazing sun on French Polynesian islands is crucial, which means sunscreen is a non-negotiable item on this Bora Bora packing list.
Make sure you reapply it throughout the day, especially if you’re swimming or snorkeling, and cloudy days under the palm trees are no exception because UV rays can still damage your skin.
Hot tip: Please be sure to pack reef-safe sunscreen free from harmful chemicals that can hurt Bora Bora’s delicate ecosystems and corals.
If you’re staying in an overwater villa with your own pool, you can bring some inflatable rafts for added fun in the sun.
They don’t take up much space and can be a great way to relax in the ocean or pool.
Some people think bringing floaties is a bit much, but we say, why not have some fun?
Ladies, your hair will inevitably get tangled after you spend a day in the ocean, and nobody wants to deal with that.
Add some hair detangler or leave-in conditioner along with some hair ties to your Bora Bora packing list so you can brush through your locks after a swim without much pain.
It’s not just your skin that needs protection from the sun in Bora Bora.
Your lips are equally sensitive, so pack a chapstick with SPF that will help keep them moisturized and protected from UV rays.
We suggest bringing one of those tinted versions for added skin benefits and a subtle color boost.
What Not to Pack for Bora Bora
When packing for Bora Bora, it’s important to remember that there are some items you should leave behind, including:
- Heels/Dress Shoes: Heels, dress shoes, and sand don’t really go together, so leave these behind.
- Fine Jewelry: You’ll be spending a lot of time in and around the ocean, so it’s best to leave your fine jewelry at home. You don’t want a Kim Kardashian situation where she lost her $75,000 diamond earring in the ocean.
- Heavy Makeup: Bora Bora is all about letting your natural beauty shine, so keep your makeup routine simple with light concealer and lip gloss. Better yet, go makeup free and embrace your vacation glow!
- Hair Dryer/Hair Straightener: Bora Bora’s humidity can wreak havoc on your hair, so leave the styling tools at home. Plus, most hotels will provide a hair dryer in your room.
- Flashlight: Some people say to bring a flashlight because the islands can be pretty dark at night. We say save space and just use the flashlight on your phone.
- Beach Towel: Bora Bora’s beaches are mostly private, and the hotels provide complimentary beach towels, so there’s no need to bring your own.
Bora Bora Packing List FAQ
These are some of the most common Bora Bora packing list questions that you may need to consider before your trip:
What Do You Need to Pack for Bora Bora?
This mega Bora Bora packing list guide covers everything you’ll need to bring, including clothing and accessories, beach essentials, electronics, medications, toiletries, and other essential items.
You’ll also want to consider the Bora Bora packing tips and what not to bring, as well as carry-on and checked baggage policies for your airline.
What Snacks Should I Bring to Bring to Bora Bora?
Food can get pricey in Bora Bora, so it can be beneficial to bring some snacks of your own, such as protein and nutrition bars, trail mix, dried fruit, or nuts.
Remember that you are not allowed to bring fresh fruit and vegetables into Bora Bora.
What Should I Wear to Bora Bora at Night?
Nighttime attire in Bora Bora is casual, so you can still go with the beachy vibe.
For women, a floral maxi dress or romper is a great option. For men, lightweight trousers or khaki shorts with a polo shirt and perfect.
Do I Need a Sweater in Bora Bora?
It cools down a tad at night, but not enough for you to bring a sweater.
A light pashmina or wrap is all you need if the evening air feels a bit chilly to you.
Do I Need to Wear Traditional Clothing in Bora Bora?
As a visitor, you are not expected or required to wear traditional French Polynesian clothing.
Ladies, if you really want to look like a local, you can buy a Pareo, a traditional skirt woven from light or printed fabric identical to a sarong.
Can I Bring Alcohol to Bora Bora?
Alcohol, especially at resorts, comes with a hefty price tag, so if you want to save money, bring unopened booze from the duty-free store in the airport before you depart the States. You can bring two liters of liquor or wine per person.
It’s always a good idea to check with your airline for specific guidelines concerning liquid cargo and don’t forget to pack a Yeti cup to keep your drinks nice and cool.
What Do I Wear to Dinner in Bora Bora?
When dining out in Bora Bora, you should dress appropriately according to your resort rules and dress code. Some resorts may require men to wear collared shirts and trousers or nice shorts for dinner, while ladies can opt for a nice sundress or blouse with pants.
The good news is that if you’re staying at a more casual place, men will probably get away with wearing shorts and a T-shirt, and women can opt for a tank top or T-shirt and shorts.
Whatever you decide to wear to dinner in Bora Bora, make sure it’s light and breathable because the climate is usually quite hot and humid.
Bora Bora Packing List Helpful Tips
Now that we’ve covered the Bora Bora packing list essentials and what not to bring, here are a few helpful tips for making your packing easy and efficient:
- As we’ve stated, Bora Bora has a tropical climate, so plan your wardrobe accordingly.
- Even though Bora Bora is considered one of the most exclusive islands in the world and has a sophisticated atmosphere, you can still leave your little black dress or tie at home.
- Don’t wait until the last minute to start packing for Bora Bora. Give yourself some time to get organized and make sure you don’t forget anything important.
- Don’t overpack because you’ll want to save space to bring home souvenirs.
Important Baggage Information for Bora Bora
One major factor to consider when packing for Bora Bora and finalizing your travel plans is airline luggage policies.
When initially flying to French Polynesia, you’ll want to check with your airline of choice, as each carrier has rules regarding carry-on and checked baggage, size limits, and weight restrictions.
To get to Bora Bora, you’ll fly into Tahiti, the main island. From there, there are inter-island flights via Air Tahiti that’ll take you to Bora Bora Airport (Motu Mute Airport).
Below are the carry-on and checked baggage policies for Air Tahiti. For more detailed information, visit Air Tahiti’s website.
Carry-On Baggage Policies for Air Tahiti
Per Air Tahiti’s website, each passenger can have one hand luggage and a personal item, and the total weight for both carry-on items must not exceed 11 pounds.
Checked Baggage Policies for Air Tahiti
Each passenger with a standard ticket is allowed one checked bag with a maximum weight of 50 pounds. Bags that exceed this weight limit will have an additional charge.
Quick Facts About Bora Bora
- Currency: French Pacific Franc (XPF)
- Main languages: The official language of French Polynesia is French, and Tahitian is still commonly used. Don’t worry if you don’t speak either of these languages because English is widely spoken.
- Best time to visit: Bora Bora is a year-round destination that can be enjoyed at any time of the year. The rainy season is from November to April, while the dry season (AKA the high season) runs from May to October.
- Time Zone: Bora Bora and Hawaii are in the same time zone.
What to Pack for Bora Bora Checklist
Now that you know what to pack for Bora Bora, it’s time to make sure everything is on your Bora Bora packing list. Use this checklist as a general reference:
Final Thoughts About This Bora Bora Packing List
Simply put, the island of Bora Bora is a slice of paradise, and we can’t think of a better place for you to spend your vacation.
This complete Bora Bora packing list guide covers everything you need to bring and what not to bring, as well as our best tips for making the most out of your Bora Bora trip.
With these pieces of advice and suggestions in mind, you will be ready to enjoy Bora Bora in comfort and style. Bon Voyage!
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