Sunset beach view of Mount Otemanu from the InterContinental Bora Bora Resort and Thalasso Spa, seen on a 2007 BigDay site inspection. What better way to celebrate your love than on a warm, sunny beach in Tahiti surrounded by family and friends? Or, if you prefer a big wedding closer to home, why not reward yourself with a second, intimate, personal ceremony on a sunset beach?
Tahiti is an island of romance and it’s hard to find somewhere more spectacular to celebrate the start of a new life together.
Ceremonial Polynesian weddings
A traditional Polynesian wedding varies from resort to resort and can be as unique as you!
Typically, beachside ceremonies incorporate a blessing from a Tahitian priest over the couple, donned in traditional pareos (sarongs) or with the Tahitian tiare (gardenia) lei. Couples can also choose to have Polynesian musicians and dancers involved in the blessing, who sing love songs after the ceremony.
Many times, the ceremonies include the traditional wedding gift of a tifaifai (quilt) or a certificate produced on tapa, made from bark. Back in your bungalow, decorations, fruit, or champagne await.
Here is a partial list of resorts that offer traditional Polynesian beach ceremonies. Speak with your BigDay travel expert about arranging a ceremony at any of these resorts, or at one not on the list. Prices are as low as $1,000!
Intercontinental Bora Bora Le Moana
Sheraton Moorea Lagoon Resort & Spa
Bora Bora Lagoon Resort & Spa
Hotel Bora Bora
Bora Bora Pearl Beach Resort
Bora Bora Nui Resort & Spa
Legal weddings in Tahiti
For those wanting a quickie legal wedding, it’s best to head to Las Vegas. Residency requirements for marriage in Tahiti are one month. Couples must also submit their birth certificates and a host of other paperwork for the legal recognition to take place.
Additionally, legal marriages that occur in Tahiti are not recognized by the USA and other governments.
There is nothing, however, that stands in your way of doing the paperwork back home and celebrating the wedding with your friends and family in Tahiti!
Suggestions for a wedding in Tahiti
As fish are my witness… InterContinental Bora Bora Resort and Thalasso Spa Overwater wedding chapel. Picture taken during a 2007 TheBigDay site inspection. The Big Day recommends, “Get legally married in your home country and then have a traditional ceremony in Tahiti. It’s ok to separate your government paperwork from your wedding celebration!” Not only does this alleviate the pressure – and expense – of meeting French Polynesian legal requirements, but it can reward you in other ways.
In order to entice the newly wed, a number of resorts in Tahiti offer ‘honeymooners only’ packages – which require a copy of your recent marriage certificate in order to get the special deal.
Plus, if you get legally married at home, you’ll be certain that your bride or groom will show up for your traditional ceremony!
Finally, if you are insistent upon an official wedding in an island paradise that will be legally acknowledged back home, consider Fiji, where a number of resorts also offer beachside ceremonies.
Just because you are in Polynesia, it doesn’t mean you have to celebrate the Tahitian way! Numerous couples choose to be wed in formal wedding dresses and tuxedos in a variety of locations both indoors and out.