Our time at the Hotel Kia Ora Resort was two days of pure relaxing bliss. Nearing the end of our two month French Polynesia camping adventure, Emma decided to splurge and treat us with this once in a lifetime getaway.
Coming off of long weeks island hopping and living out of our MSR tent Emma kept hinting that we were in the honeymoon capital of the world and how nice it would be to experience a resort in paradise. She eventually realized that, I being dense and cheap when it comes to travel accommodation, was not going initiate us staying at a resort.
We were having such a horrible camping experience on Rangiroa that Emma decided to take initiative and book us a two night stay at the Hotel Kia Ora Resort before going to our next island destination.
It was surreal coming from our camping hostel to the luxury of Hotel Kia Ora. We were handed flower lays as we were picked up in an air-con vehicle and whisked across the atoll to the resort. Once at the resort we were immediately handed juice refreshments and damp towels as the staff took our backpacks to our bungalow.
After going over the basics on what Hotel Kia Ora offers its guests, Emma and I were transported to our bungalow with instructions that if we needed anything to make sure and let somebody know.
Even though I am a broke backpacker, I’ve stayed in a few resorts before, but nothing came close to the luxury I felt when stepping into our air cooled room after almost two months of living in a tent. Emma and I were like little kids with new toys, excited about everything. “Look how big that bed is!” “Ooo we have slippers and robes!” “This room is massive and oh we have our own pool!” Everything was so nice and tidy, we did not want to touch anything, mess it up or make it dirty.
Following our initial wave of awe and must have photos, of the undisturbed room, we popped open our complimentary bottle of local Rangiroa coral wine and hopped into our private pool. It seemed like months of unseen weight was immediately lifted off of my shoulders as I relaxed in the sunshine of our private bungalow.
That first afternoon we enjoyed our bungalow before joining the Hotel Kia Ora evening dolphin watching tour. Us along with a few other guests received a ride to the Tiputa Pass, were during most sunsets you might catch a glimpse of dolphins playing.
The dolphins did not feel like playing that evening but Emma and I did met a nice couple from the US. They have stayed at Hotel Kia Ora before and they gave us tips to walk down the road if we wanted to buy cheap snacks or booze instead of spending money on the resort. With cheap beer on my mind, I left Emma to chat, while I went to find the store for some drinks.
We returned to our room from dolphin watching for a drink. After, Emma and I went down to the resort’s main restaurant and had the best food we had tasted in months. Camping these last few weeks, we have been living off of a very limited die. Being able to order certain things that we had been craving was phenomenal. We savored our food and a few cocktails, feeling delectably spoiled.
That night we turned on the AC, piled on our blankets and slept as far apart from each other as we could, spreading out for the first time in weeks. It was a fantastic night of sleep.
The next day Emma and I got up for another phenomenal meal before wandering around and exploring more of Hotel Kia Ora. We took quite a few pictures of the grounds, some drone videos and made an afternoon relaxing in the resort pool.
I went for a snorkel around the over water bungalows and enjoyed sunshine on the beach. Emma and I went for a walk before sunset, wanting to see more of this part of the atoll and hoping to see the dolphins in the pass.
Emma and I had one more fantastic dinner, another great night of sleep and a quick breakfast before our resort time was up, the fantasy was over and next we were on a plane to Tikehau, back to tenting life.
Staying at the Hotel Kia Ora Resort was nothing short of magical, being at a proper resort in one of the most beautiful and remote places on the planet became the highlight of our time spent in French Polynesia.
If you are planning a trip to French Polynesia make sure to visit the Destination French Polynesia page for more travel information to this sunning destination. If resorts and scuba diving are you thing make sure to check out the Hotel Kia Ora Resort!
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