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“Wilfred is the man!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Lagoonarium

Lagoonarium
Afareaitu pk 8.5, Cote mer, French Polynesia
+689 87783115
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Top Rated
$139*
and up
Bora Bora Snorkel, Sharkfeeding and Lagoonarium...
Ranked #1 of 15 Attractions in Moorea
Attraction details
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
50 reviews 50 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
“Wilfred is the man!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2014

Instead of paying for tours that take you on sting ray and shark feedings, I highly recommend going to the Lagoonraium instead and doing things at your own pace for however long you want!
You will need to rent a car for the day - get an early start so you can secure one of the cute little huts on the little island Wilfred takes you. He is such a nice and knowledgable man - truly passionate about his way of life. The sting rays have had their tails cut off (or however you would say it) so they're not dangerous at all. There are two feedings Wilfred does during the day - one is at 11 am and one is at 2 pm. Make sure you take your snorkeling gear! We forgot ours and ended up missing the first feeding. He brings a little boat from his island to pick you up and drops you off whenever you want to. He only has tea, coffee and hot chocolate so its best to pack your snacks and go there with food beforehand. You can easily leave your belongings in the little huts he has made.
The feeding was amazing. He basically grabs onto the fish and let them swim him around - it's completely out of this world! There's a huge eel too that he plays around with. Luckily he has ropes set up so as long as you cling onto those the current won't drift you away. This is a MUST! This takes up almost half of your day so I wouldn't recommend planning anything else after this for the day - the last boat leaves his little island around 4:30 so you can easily spend the entire day here. I forgot what the entrance fee was per person but it was totally worth it - nothing that will break your bank.
Make sure you take an underwater camera and your snorkeling gear! He speaks english fluently and is so friendly and hospitable it'll blow you away. The guy has no idea what TripAdvisor is or how popular he is on here…truly amazing!

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Chicago, Illinois
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
10 attraction reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“Fantastic Moorea snorkeling experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2014

My wife and I read that this was the best snorkeling on Moorea, so we had to check it out. It's a pretty small operation so they don't offer a shuttle, as some other activities/restaurants around the island do. We arrived and paid the nice lady (cash only), who called over to the motu for us to be picked up. Wilfred, the man who runs the Lagoonarium, picked us up in a small boat and brought us to his island. He was very friendly (starting every sentence with "My friend") taking time to explain and answer questions in both French and English, for both us and another family. He gave us a tour of the motu, showed us a private hut we could change and leave our items in, showed us an example of a Scorpion Fish to avoid, and pointed out the snorkeling routes. These routes consist of a series of buoys and ropes tied together and anchored into the coral at various locations. They're designed in such a way that you can pull yourself along the rope paths out to the reef and back. They're good guidelines when swimming close to the motu and are especially useful closer to the reef, where the currents are a little stronger.

The snorkeling was amazing! We saw black-tipped sharks, sting rays, a huge moray eel, and a ton of beautiful fish. At 11:30 a.m., there was a scheduled feeding in which Wilfred invited everyone to get in the water as he fed the rays and sharks. He does it right in front of your face and puts on quite a show! While he's feeding, he brings the rays close and lets you pet them. We were surprised how silky smooth they were. Truly a great experience!

Wilfred said he's been doing this for over a decade and a half and assured us the rays, sharks, and eels are not dangerous; the barbs on the ray tails have been removed and as long as he continues to feed the sharks and eels, they will not bite anyone. However, I wouldn't try to grab any shark fins or pet the eels.

I agree with the reviews that recommend bringing food for a picnic, as there isn't a restaurant or anything on the island. There was a "chef" on the island who would cook up some barbecue if you needed, but there weren't any clear prices. Also, there was a nice little eating area where Wilfred kept a supply of hot water and containers of various mixes for hot drinks. We thought that was a nice touch.

When we were ready to leave, we hopped back in the boat and Wilfred brought us back to the main island of Moorea. Before we said our goodbyes he taught us a few phrases in Tahitian and French, then we got in our taxi and headed back to the resort.

If there was one bad thing about the experience, it was the taxi. As the taxi driver dropped us off, we asked how much we owed. He said 2000 CFP one way, but 5000 CFP for pick-up at a time of our choosing and return. I said "OK" without thinking about it and later regretted it. I recommend negotiating this ahead of time, or get a one-way trip there and have the lady call you one for the way back; this might save you some cash. 5000 CFP ($56) for about 20 minutes of total driving is a bit ridiculous. I understand that this is not related to the Lagoonarium, and it does not affect my review, I just wanted to let you all know so you can hopefully save a little money.

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Top Contributor
76 reviews 76 reviews
20 attraction reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
“Great sea life viewing but questionable practices.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

Its pretty reasonably priced for a French Polynesian tourist attraction (3200CPF pp). The owner has also obviously made a big effort to make it a pleasureable on land experience with huts, a cafeteria, misc shell decorations etc etc given all he is working with is a coral atoll and presumably doesn't have multinational financial backing. The reef is is in quite good condition cf some parts of French Polynesia; perhaps as most of tourists don't venture far from shore. There are also kayaks people can use for free. Feel they should tell tourists not to climb on the coral as it kills it - something people generally don't realise and which quite a few people were doing whilst we were there.

The sealife - good variety of reef fish and towards feeding time a whole bunch of larger fish, rays and reef sharks turn up for a free feed. Feeding time of the rays is a bit a la chimpanzees tea party with the rays virtually begging for scraps. The sharks are more sympatheically dealt with having fish thrown to them from distance and not been corralled by onlookers. My wife said cutting off the rays barbs was part of the show (missed this as was off observing sharks waiting their turn) which is a bit barbaric and definitely taking liberties with nature.

All in all great to see these creatures in their natural environment but the feeding time "show" itself left a bit of a bad taste in the mouth.

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Coronado, California
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“Excellent way to spend a day in paradise”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2013

They feed the fish twice a day and have a rope strung throughout the lagoon for the snorkelers to hang onto if the current is strong. There is also a shallow area for those who may not want to venture too far from the little island. Not for those who cannot walk on their own. You must go down steps and walk through the water to get to the boat which takes you out to the little motu. They have created a cute Gilligan's Island type of place and sell meals. You can also take your own food and they provide a little A frame hut for you to change in and rest on a mat out of the sun. Very cute!

Visited May 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Queen Creek, Az
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Awesome experience!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 17, 2013

If you visit Moorea, I would say this is the #1 thing to do!
The lagoonarium is a small motu encircled by crystal clear waters filled with abundant coral and sea life. When you arrive, you feel as though you are on your own personal island! A small boat transports you to the motu which has a few simple but appreciated amenities…covered huts to put your belongings while you enjoy the water and to get out of the sun if you want, a bathroom w/ toilet and enclosed fresh water shower and a small eating area with tables to eat a packed lunch or purchase one prepared for you on the motu. We shared a meal (2000 cpf) and the food was good. There are two feedings at 11:00 and 2:00 where you will see a ton of beautiful fish, stingrays and black tip reef sharks up close and personal….I mean inches away! There is a grid of ropes to hold and move around the area if needed. We found a little current in areas but if you are a good swimmer you can easily swim without using them. One thing to note however, the lagoonarium does not provide transport to/from your hotel so you will have to find your own transportation to get there. We rented a car for the day with another couple and explored around the island afterwards. I believe the lagoonarium is open from 9:00-4:00 so you can make it a full day if you’d like. Enjoy the view!

Visited November 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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