Welcome back to Tahiti Times! We are kicking everything off with the first part of our new series, the Twelve Secrets of Tahiti. When most people think of Tahiti, the first image that comes to mind are the overwater bungalows in Bora Bora looking out onto Mount Otemanu. However, our first secret is located on the small atoll of Tetiaroa, just 30 miles northeast of Tahiti. This atoll was the preferred and exclusive retreat of the Tahitian royal family for generations until the 1960s. In 1965, Marlon Brando filmed “Mutiny on the Bounty” in the South Pacific and discovered this hidden gem. He promptly purchased and fell in love with Tetiaroa, stating that “My mind is always soothed when I imagine myself sitting on my South Sea island at night.”
Brando used this tropical sanctuary as his own retreat for years, wanting to maintain Tetiaroa in its purest condition as a sustainable, ecological habitat where people, plants, and wildlife could all reside in harmony. Thus, The Brando was created; a luxury, eco-friendly, all-inclusive resort. This resort – which is expected to be the world’s first resort to achieve LEED Platinum certification – has only 35 villas that are all self-sustaining with renewable forms of non-fossil fuel energy, providing an ultra-exclusive experience for all guests.
Of interest to most travelers, Tetiaroa is actually one of the few places in the world without mosquitoes – even though it is a tropical island! A French biologist and his team have been releasing sterile male mosquitoes for the past six months and have virtually depleted the mosquito population on the island. So far there is no downside to this experiment as there are no animals or insects on the atoll that consume mosquitoes. And the upside, is that travelers now have somewhere to escape the mosquitoes this summer!
So now you know secret #1: The only tropical destination in the world with no mosquitoes is in Tahiti!