Macro Diving in French Polynesia

The islands of French Polynesia may be on the other side of the planet, but don’t let the fear of jet lag put you off visiting this idyllic group of Pacific islands. After a good night’s sleep, you can blow the morning cobwebs of jet lag away with a high-adrenaline, shark-filled dive through the passes, before enjoying a gentle meander in the shallow lagoons to take in the relaxed macro diving. French Polynesia is a shark diving dream, and while you will definitely be bringing your wide-angle lens, if you don’t also make room for your close-up lens, you may regret it once you sample the macro diving in French Polynesia...

The South Pacific has captivated the imagination ever since Rogers and Hammersmith penned their infamous hit musical, and by the time Jacques Cousteau described the lagoon at Tikehau as being one of the richest in fish life in the world, French Polynesia already had divers figuring out how to reach these remote paradise islands.

At Original Diving, we have already dispatched our dive experts to wander the islets and dive the passes and lagoons, so you have no need to scratch your head over the planning. Sit back and allow us to put together the ultimate French Polynesian itinerary to ensure you enjoy the best shark dives and the cream of the macro diving on offer.

Bora Bora

Known for its shark dives around Teavanui Pass, Bora Bora also gives you the chance to get in the water with your macro lens. Toopua and The Aquarium are both located within the lagoon, and the shallow water, with plenty of ambient light, lends itself well to shooting some excellent macro shots. The dive site Anau also provides a good opportunity for macro photography, as long as you don't get distracted by the manta rays...


The pass diving around Rangiroa can be problematic for photographers; wide-angle is perfect for the sharks and rays in the passes, but the inner lagoons at the end of the dives throw up an array of macro subjects too. Octopus, scorpionfish, nudibranchs and a variety of shrimp will reward those who opted for a macro set-up, and forgoing the wide-angle means you get to enjoy the sharks without constantly needing to fiddle with your aperture and shutter speeds.


The fish life at Rangiroa's neighbouring atoll, Tikehau, left an impression on Jacques Cousteau, and you can sleep directly above it in an over-the-water bungalow. Tuheiava Pass is the perfect wake-up dive, and the inner-lagoon sites such as Aramu Ramu will drain your camera's battery as you endlessly zoom in on the macro critters.

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Emily C and Eleanor are our 'Macro Diving in French Polynesia' experts and as seasoned travellers they have the inside track on the most memorable adventures.

Call us on 1-800-652-1972