Teahupo’o in Tahiti is renowned for its legendary wave, often described as one of the heaviest and most powerful in the world. Teahupo’o  has become synonymous with power and perfection in the world of surfing, is a must-visit destination for surf enthusiasts and adventurers alike. Located on the island of Tahiti in French Polynesia, Teahupo’o is not just a surf spot; it’s an icon of the sport, attracting surfers from around the globe to test their skills on its monstrous waves. It is also a peaceful tiny haven at the end of the road, with a magic vibe. And this year, it will host the Paris Olympics 2024 Surfing competition.

Teahupo’o: A Surfing Icon

With wave faces reaching up to 7 to 10 feet on average and occasionally soaring to 20 feet or more, Teahupo’o demands exceptional skill and courage from surfers. It is a regular host for major surfing competitions, including the Olympics surfing contest in 2024, scheduled on a 10 days window from July 27 to August 8 (schedule here). This wave’s sheer force and beauty draw surfers and spectators alike, creating an electrifying atmosphere during competitions that showcase the pinnacle of wave riding expertise.

Visiting Teahupo’o beyond the Olympics

Visiting Teahupo’o before or after the Olympics might be more convenient. Start your journey by flying into Tahiti directly from San Francisco (or Los Angeles) with Frenchbee . If you don’t intend to stay there, a day trip also works perfectly. The drive to the Teahupo’o village from Papeete takes approximately 1h1/2 and is an easy ride, and this feeling of the end of the road is precious. The main activity if you don’t surf, is to go and see the wave, and you need someone to take you there.

We had the best experience with Teahupoo Excursion Taxi Boat led by Michael Vautor who is quite a character: owner of Teahupoo Excursion, he is a local surfer and has lived in Teahupoo for the last 25 years.  And he is also an actor! Two years ago he left his end-of-the road paradise to attend Cannes Film Festival alongside Benoit Magimel for the movie Pacifiction in which he has a part. He also recently was featured in a series on the Olympics that will air on French TV in September!

We embarked on a boat with around ten other guests to get a close-up view of the wave. On that day, some Olympic contestants were training despite the less-than-ideal weather; at one stage, it even poured rain. Nevertheless, it was truly remarkable to witness one of the largest surf waves in the world. Observing it from the side offered a direct perspective on the barrel, yet we felt

Cannes Festival 2022

completely secure throughout the experience.

We only went to see the wave, but Teahupoo Excursion has a lot more tours to offer. They offer various tours, including half-day, full-day, mixed surf, and explore tours, allowing you to experience the beauty of Tahiti’s wild coastlines and indulge in snorkeling or swimming in the lagoon. They regularly take photo and video crews on board to film and photograph, as well as towing services for advanced surfers and competitors. And icing on the cake : you get a ton of anecdotes, and a good insight of who is in the water. Michael knows everybody and everybody knows him!

Visiting Teahupo’o During the Olympics

Visiting Teahupo’o during the Olympics requires careful planning, especially for spectators. Since spectators are not allowed on the water during the competition, the best vantage point will be from the shore. The schedule is on a 10 days window from July 27 to August 8 (schedule here). Here’s a guide on how to make the most of your Teahupo’o experience:

  • During the Olympics :  The drive to the village Teahupo’o from Papeete takes approximately 1h1/2 but during the Olympics, spectators will not be allowed to reach the end of the road directly, they will need to stop in Taravao and then catch a bus to the village of Teahupo’o.
  • Watching the Competition: During the Olympics, spectators can gather in Teahupo’o village to watch the surf contest unfold from the shore. The viewing point is a short walk from the parking lot, walking over the brand new pedestrian bridge. Enjoy the thrill of witnessing world-class surfers take on the legendary waves of Teahupo’o.
  • We wish good luck to the 4 French competitors Vahine Fierro, Johanne Defay (women) and Kauli Vaast, Joan Duru (Men), may the Mana be with them!

Experiencing Teahupo’o during the Olympics presents a rare chance to witness the creation of surfing history alongside top-tier surfers. Beyond the Olympic fervor, whether you are an avid surfer or simply captivated by nature’s wonders, Teahupo’o’s stunning beauty and exhilarating waves promise an unforgettable journey in Tahiti. Prepare for your adventure by packing your bags and scheduling a trip to this surfing haven at Teahupo’o, famously known as the end-of-the-road.

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