Food + Wine

Beach Food for Hungry Surfers

by Cathay Che

Teahupoo and Snack Maui, Tahiti, French Polynesia

Ride the waves: Between April and September, the surf at Teahupoo can rise to 40 feet tall and 40 feet wide before breaking onto dry reef (all of the water is sucked up into the wave). Just watching daredevil experts tangle with the most dangerous wave in the world will get your blood pumping. On the drive out to this sleepy village on the southwest corner of Tahiti Iti, watch out for dogs, goats, and local children playing in the middle of the road—this isn't the Tahiti of private island resorts and overwater bungalows.

Tide your appetite: French Polynesia's fast-food joints, or "snacks," are a delicious, belly-filling way to beat the brutal exchange rate with the French Polynesian franc. Snack Maui, on the white sands of Plage de Maui in the village of Vairoa (ten minutes by car from Teahupoo), serves fresh seafood such as Tahitian fish ceviche marinated in coconut milk and lime and mahimahi in a salty, aromatic vanilla sauce with a generous dollop of rice. Add a cold Hinano beer and you've got a vastly satisfying, uniquely French Polynesian meal that just might be the highlight of your honeymoon.

Snack Maui (a.k.a. La Plage de Maui)
PK 6, South Coastal Road
Vairoa, Tahiti, French Polynesia
Tel: 689 74 71 74
Entrees $10–$15

Next: The top surf spot and tapas in the Caribbean >

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Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.

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