The Best Oceanside Restaurants in Bora Bora

Explore the rich world beneath the surface in Bora Bora
Explore the rich world beneath the surface in Bora Bora | © Nicole Tessieri / Alamy
Sadie Whitelocks

It might be small, but the appeal of Bora Bora is mighty. This tiny island in the South Pacific boasts lush jungle, peaceful lagoons, healthy coral reefs and a rich culture. The cherry on top is its fine selection of luxury hotel offerings, accompanied by a list of noteworthy restaurants overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Here’s our pick of the best.

Enjoy your oceanside meal in Bora Bora after hiring a boat.

Otemanu Restaurant at Le Bora Bora by Pearl Resorts

Named after the highest point in Bora Bora, this restaurant is perched up high at Le Bora Bora by Pearl Resorts and provides peaceful views of the shimmering lagoon below. It offers breakfast and dinner options; the morning meal is served buffet-style, and come evening there’s the opportunity to dine under the stars. Dip into the restaurant on a Monday evening and you’ll be treated to a Polynesian show. On the food front, the menu features international cuisine with a Tahitian twist.

Iriatai French Restaurant at the Conrad Bora Bora Nui

Sit back and soak up the refined setting of this open-air restaurant which affords fine views of the lagoon and the hotel’s dreamy overwater bungalows. The restaurant serves a well-curated menu of French-inspired dishes, with herbs from the on-site garden and fish from the lagoon. On the dessert front, the French toast brioche with caramelised pecan nuts and salted butter caramel breadfruit ice cream is not to be missed. Wash it all down with a tipple from the extensive wine list.

Sands Restaurant at the InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa

As the name of this restaurant suggests, it sits on the white sand beach of the five-star InterContinental overlooking the bobbing blue and the summit of Mount Otemanu beyond. Pop in for lunch or an evening meal, when flickering torchlight adds to the romance. The traditional poisson cru, a Polynesian dish of raw fish marinated in citrus juice and coconut milk, gets top marks.

Lagoon Restaurant by Jean-Georges at The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort

Elevate your Bora Bora dining game with a trip to the Lagoon Restaurant by Jean-Georges at the ultra-luxe St. Regis resort. The fine-dining spot features a menu masterminded by the world-famous French chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Try the uravena, a fish that is very difficult to catch, as it’s found between 200-400m (650-1,300ft) deep. The restaurant prides itself on being the only restaurant in Polynesia to offer it. The views here are as appetising as the artfully presented dishes – the main dining room looks over the aquamarine waters and has glass panels in the floor, so you can watch what’s happening below.

Vaimiti at the Four Seasons Resort Bora Bora

If you’re a fan of Asian food then you can get your fix at Vaimiti. This photogenic overwater dining venue at the island’s Four Seasons property offers a mouthwatering meze inspired by the East, with everything from pork belly spring rolls to kung pao chicken. Kick the evening off with a couple of quaffable cocktails or a slug of sake before digging into your feast.

Bloody Mary’s

Follow in the footsteps of Pierce Brosnan, Buzz Aldrin and a string of other famous faces with a trip to this old island favourite. Keeping guests happy since 1979, the beach bar and restaurant is part of the neighbouring yacht club, so you can roll out of your boat straight to your dining table. There’s a lunch and dinner menu, with house specials including the mahi-mahi reuben sandwich. And, of course, you can’t leave without trying a bloody mary.

Bora Bora Yacht Club

Mingle with other sailors at this popular restaurant that sits on the waterfront as part of the island’s yacht club. The mahi-mahi, succulent steak and carpaccio are some of the top-rated dishes, while the chocolate lava cake is a great way to round things off. The kitchen is open for lunch and dinner, with sunset one of the popular times to visit. Be sure to arrive early to get a good seat and settle in with a well-made piña colada.

Restaurant St James

Lap up prime views of the lagoon at this characterful open-air restaurant, which serves an all-day dining menu combining French and Polynesian flavours. The home-made fish stew makes use of local ingredients including mahi-mahi and shrimps, while the lagoon fish baked in salt crust is another winning dish. If you’re looking for something lighter, a tantalising tapas menu can be enjoyed at the bar, with salmon and snails among the pickings. Fancy pairing it with some bubbles? There’s a great selection of champagne to sample.

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