Hiva Oa Island Travel Guide and Deals

Famous for being the final resting place of the French painter Paul Gauguin and the Belgian singer and poet Jacques Brel.

Fun Facts About Hiva Oa

Hiva Oa’s beauty lies in the unique features of its glorious landscapes. Upon setting foot on this South Pacific island, you’ll be surrounded by sublime indigo waters punctuated by seaside cliffs and volcanic rock. Hiva Oa also brings a rich cultural experience and unmatched wilderness together, making travellers wish they’d stayed longer.

Located about 1,184 km northeast of Tahiti, flights to Hiva Oa take about 3 hours and 20 minutes from Tahiti. The island is famous for being the final resting place of the French painter Paul Gauguin and the Belgian singer and poet Jacques Brel. Located on the side of the Calvary cemetery, with views across the bay below, the graves are a pilgrimage for many visitors to this remote island.

Those that make the journey are rewarded with two small but informative museums about each of these famous residents. The Gauguin Museum displays copies of his work and several items related to the painter’s stay during the beginning of the 20th century.

Like all Marquesan islands, Hiva Oa’s fauna and flora are varied, exotic, and magnificent! If you’re looking for wild, untamed landscape and breathtaking scenery with rich cultural and artistic heritage, Hiva Oa is definitively an island to visit.

Hiva Oa FAQs

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Where is Hiva Oa located?

Hiva Oa is located in the Marquesas Islands. These two volcanic archipelagoes are 740 miles (1,200 kilometres) northeast of Tahiti.

How do I get to Hiva Oa?

Most visitors travel to the Marquesas on cruise ships, like the Paul Gauguin and the Aranui. But if you prefer to arrive by plane, flights depart from Faa’a International Airport in Papeete.

How long will a flight from Tahiti to Hiva Oa take?

You’ll land at Hiva Oa’s airport after three hours and 15 minutes.

How do I travel around the island?

You can ride a rented car or scooter, taxi or boat. Boats can bring you to some of the valleys and other islands.

Where can I stay in Hiva Oa?

The Hanakee Pearl Lodge near Atuona is Hiva Oa’s main accommodation. You can board a shuttle to get there.

Which attractions should I visit?

Consider taking a trip to these Hiva Oa attractions.

  • The Les Petroglyphes de Tehueto trail near Atuona
  • The Jacques Brel Museum
  • The Paul Gauguin Cultural Centre

Do you have any tips for visiting Hiva Oa?

Be sure to pack insect repellent to avoid mosquito bites. You can also wear long, loose pants and sleeves.

Finally, watch out for the nono, a type of black fly. While repellents won’t ward them off, monoi oil may get the job done.

Does Hiva Oa have banks?

You can find banks on the island. If you’re island-hopping, it is best to bring enough cash.

How many people live on the island?

2,243 residents make up Hiva Oa’s total population.

Can I buy souvenirs?

Atuona has stores that sell carved tiki and bowls, bone and feather jewelry, delightful Marquesan honey and other souvenirs.

Helpful Information

When to visit

You’ll find Hiva Oa in the Marquesas Islands. Warmer temperatures surround the archipelago from August to December, making these months the perfect time to travel there.

When experience matters